Time Warners Timing is Everything

Eric Massa held a town hall meeting in Pittsford NY today which some Time Warner representatitves attended.

We couldn’t have a better representative than Eric Massa gunning for us against Time Warner.  He really understand the issue and he seems well informed.  He brought several new pieces of information to light, for example, the federal government subsidizes a large portion of any internet infrastructure enhancement work, also billions of dollars in the economic stimulus plan have been dedicated to projects just like that.

Ironically enough about 20 minutes after the meeting began Time Warner released a new press release containing new/different tier information.  The following is a breakdown of the new plans.

Plan Name Cap Price Speed Overage Charges Current Equivalent
Lowest Tier 1Gb $15 768Kbps Down, 128Kbps Up $2/Gb NONE
Lite 10Gb $30 ?? $1/Gb NONE
Basic 20Gb $40 ?? $1/Gb NONE
Standard 40Gb $50 ?? $1/Gb NONE
Turbo 60Gb $55 ?? $1/Gb NONE
Turbo XL 100Gb $75 10Mbps Down, 1Mbps Up $1/Gb RoadRunner – $40/Month, Unlimited, 10Mbps Down 380Kbps Up
?? ?? ?? ?? ?? RoadRunner TURBO – $50/Month, Unlimited, 15Mbps Down 1Mbps Up

Their new plan does offer unlimited service but for a hefty price.

Overage charges will be capped at $75 per month. That means that for $150 per month customers could have virtually unlimited usage at Turbo speeds.

This means that for the Low Low Price of $150/month you can have exactly the same as what you get for $40/month right now.  That’s right, their TURBO speed is slower AND you’ll be paying almost 4x as much as you do right now.

My friend Dean threw together a great graph illustrating the Monthly Cost vs Bandwidth used per plan.


From the graph it would appear that the lowest tier would always be the best, but we know that the lowest tier is crippled (most experts agree that 768Kbps shouldn’t be considered broadband at all).  We really need to get speed information regarding these plans but they have yet to release those figures.  Given that TURBO appears to be crippled according to their current speeds, don’t hold your breath for good numbers.

massaThe feeling couldn’t be scrubbed that the new press released was perfectly timed with the town hall meeting and Time Warner did it this way in order to claim during the meeting that “We just recently released a new press release which has a drastically different pricing scheme and which you may be happy with.”  They did say this and I suspect they timed it this way to quiet some of the more vocal people in the town hall.  Luckily, some of those who had mobile devices had already read the new proposal by the time they announced it in the meeting and they were quite vocal that the new plan did nothing for anyone (I also spoke up to that effect).

Eric Massa suggested we convene at a latter date to discuss the Time Warner issue specifically.  It was interesting to see because it felt like Massa was throwing down and challenging Time Warner to just try to cross his line in the sand.  The Time Warner representatives seemed to agree to this on the spot (whether they have the authority to do so is still to be determined so time will tell) so I suspect we’ll be seeing another event soon.

In summary, it’s great to have Eric Massa with us but Time Warner’s new proposal is laughable at best.

Your move TWC!

7 thoughts on “Time Warners Timing is Everything

  1. Nice writeup Randy and it is much appreciated as I was unable to attend last night. Two items I’d like to add:

    1) I have unlimited internet on my phone that I can use through my laptop at a speed of 1.7 Mbps down and 380 Kbps up (those are from actual speedtest results). This costs me a mere $10 a month on top of my regular cell phone plan and I can take it anywhere. It already beats TWC lowest tier hands down.

    2) While talking with an employee of Frontier on the bus last night he enlightened me to what Frontier and others he have talked to feel the *real* reason for TWC’s new plan. It is not to cover their internet/bandwidth costs but rather make internet video content more expensive than watching it on their cable channels. Their pulling the distraction and look over here trick.


  2. Hey, I take exception to the bald head thing :)….. Time warner clarified caps later as saying that the maximum amount you would pay is $150 NOT $75 over your plan. That means that the 1gb/$15 model turns out to meet it’s maximum payment cap at just under 74gb of usage. Seems like a lot, until you realize that the poor person is going to be paying over $2/gb (what a great deal) after they pay $15/gb for the first one (discrimination against the low-end user). These sort of “non-technical” users are the ones that typically don’t secure their wireless routers, or end up getting a virus or trojan. Any of those things could easily eat bandwidth at a tremendous rate as their neighbors or criminals from overseas reuse their system. Imagine the surprise of Grandma when she’s been paying $15 and get a bill for $150. 1GB isn’t even enough to download Windows updates and virus updates for a month, muchless actually USE the internet.

    Feel free to visit http://www.verizonfiber.com (not sponsored by verizon) to try to bring competition to this region.


  3. Lee,

    Thanks for stopping by. I was unaware of the $150 total bill cap (as opposed to $75 in overage cap) this is even more ridiculous than I previously thought.

    All the more reason to keep up the fight!

    I like the idea of bringing competition into the area (as opposed to directly fighting Time Warner) as I think it means more in the long term. However; from my understanding Verizon does not have a tap into the main Internet lines (OC1 at this time i believe?) it would cost them an extraordinary amount of up front cash to get started. Since they haven’t rolled fiber out to everyone in their own networks, this is likely a long time off. Also since this is Frontier territory, there are unions blocking the usage of Frontiers own tap to get Verizon started. Sad but true reality.

    Personally, I think where we should concentrate the most of our efforts is on the local government to set up municipal connections like that found in Wilson NC (http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=14934).

    Again, Thanks for stopping by, I look forward to further discussions!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s