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Old 06-10-2014, 06:31 AM   #9001
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How about going to the local Comcast office and see if they can help?

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Old 06-10-2014, 02:48 PM   #9002
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Local Comcast office is basically a place to drop off payments and exchange equipment. Anything else requires calling "Comcast". Their online chat is manned by Comcast employees so that might work.
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:45 PM   #9003
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Well Comcast apparently removed the two outlet fees by removing the two TiVo boxes from my account since two of my three boxes are reporting I'm not authorized to receive any channels.

Edit:

I called the phone number on the screen for my Roamio, which was apparently TiVo customer support which was closed. I then called Comcast and after mentioning TiVo, they transferred me to the same TiVo's support line.

I called Comcast back and this time didn't mention TiVo. Surprisingly, Gail, was able to fix one box nearly instantly after I provided the cable card serial number. The other box took about 5 minutes to fix. Both boxes remained paired since they didn't need any pairing info. Apparently both cards had been removed from the system. My theory is that Comcast removed the outlet fees and by doing so, the cards got removed from the billing system as well, which deactivated all channels. Once I provided the card serial numbers Gail simply added them back in and everything worked again. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised, especially considering all the horrible support agents I've been getting recently.

Last edited by morac : 06-13-2014 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 06-23-2014, 11:27 AM   #9004
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So did they add the outlet fees or bogus HD tech fee back, or are you waiting on the next bill to see?
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Old 06-23-2014, 04:10 PM   #9005
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Waiting for the next bill. I guess I could call them and ask them what's happening, but I don't need the migraine. The last person I spoke to (who fixed my cards) seem to indicate there was no outlet fees, but she wasn't a billing person.

On a side note, I was in Philly near the Comcast tower the other day, so I wandered by to see the lobby and where all my money was going.
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Old 06-28-2014, 11:48 AM   #9006
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On a side note, I was in Philly near the Comcast tower the other day, so I wandered by to see the lobby and where all my money was going.
Not to mention their billionaire CEO's (disclosed) pay package of over $30,000,000 last year alone.
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Old 06-28-2014, 11:58 AM   #9007
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One of my parents' neighbors' wireless networks is named "Comcast is the worst ISP". :-D
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Old 06-30-2014, 05:59 PM   #9008
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I got a letter today from Comcast dated June 23 stating that during a recent review of my account they determined I wasn't be billed for 2 outlets so they are adding them. They included a new pricing guide from June 2014. That guide lists the outlet fee (and HD tech fee) under service as opposed to equipment like the old price guide.

I guess that means even if they got removed, they were added back. They claim my new bill will be $191.70 ($19.90 increase) which it better not since I'm on a promotion.

Considering I only have 2 TV's I could probably argue the "outlet" terminology, but I'll just return 1 card and switch my Premiere to antenna only. I may also drop blast since regular internet is now 50 Mbps.
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Old 06-30-2014, 07:30 PM   #9009
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I got a letter today from Comcast dated June 23 stating that during a recent review of my account they determined I wasn't be billed for 2 outlets so they are adding them. They included a new pricing guide from June 2014. That guide lists the outlet fee (and HD tech fee) under service as opposed to equipment like the old price guide.
Having 5 cablecards, I live in constant fear of this happening....

During my last Pairing of one, they mentioned they "Corrected some things on my account", which has me worried.
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Old 06-30-2014, 07:39 PM   #9010
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If you have two TVs do you have more than 2 devices, like 3 TiVos or 2 TiVos and a STB?

If there's only 2 devices connected to the 2 TVs you shouldn't have to pay for both outlets since the first is included in the service.
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Old 06-30-2014, 11:02 PM   #9011
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I got a letter today from Comcast dated June 23 stating that during a recent review of my account they determined I wasn't be billed for 2 outlets so they are adding them. They included a new pricing guide from June 2014. That guide lists the outlet fee (and HD tech fee) under service as opposed to equipment like the old price guide.

I guess that means even if they got removed, they were added back. They claim my new bill will be $191.70 ($19.90 increase) which it better not since I'm on a promotion.

Considering I only have 2 TV's I could probably argue the "outlet" terminology, but I'll just return 1 card and switch my Premiere to antenna only. I may also drop blast since regular internet is now 50 Mbps.
If they try to add an "HD Technology Fee" to my account, I'll tell then to disable the HD channels that aren't included w/o the fee. I'd be willing to bet that they have no way to do that.
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Old 07-01-2014, 12:45 PM   #9012
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I got a letter today from Comcast dated June 23 stating that during a recent review of my account they determined I wasn't be billed for 2 outlets so they are adding them. They included a new pricing guide from June 2014. That guide lists the outlet fee (and HD tech fee) under service as opposed to equipment like the old price guide.
I got one of those "review notes" a while back to say they noticed I wasn't paying for my cable modem, so they added it on. Problem is I own my modem and don't have one of theirs. Multiple phone calls later and it got removed.
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Old 07-01-2014, 06:18 PM   #9013
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If you have two TVs do you have more than 2 devices, like 3 TiVos or 2 TiVos and a STB?

If there's only 2 devices connected to the 2 TVs you shouldn't have to pay for both outlets since the first is included in the service.
I have 3 devices connected to 2 TVs, so there are 3 devices, but technically only 2 wall outlets. It will be interesting to see my new bill since the bill already listed 3 outlets at $0 on it plus another 2 outlets at $9.95 each. I'd love to have a talk with billing about that except when I called I got someone in India who wasn't in the billing department. I think they are only open M-F 9 to 5. I plan to have a chat with Comcast when my next bill comes. I'd go over to the Comcast Tower in Philly as I don't work that far from it, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't get past the front desk.

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If they try to add an "HD Technology Fee" to my account, I'll tell then to disable the HD channels that aren't included w/o the fee. I'd be willing to bet that they have no way to do that.
They have the ability to remove channels. It's part of the billing system. That's how they can have tiers. Whether they would or not is another matter.

I've gotten that "outlet fee" letter before and contested it and got it removed, but this time I had already contested it prior to receiving the letter, so I'm guessing my contention led to the letter.
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Old 07-01-2014, 09:39 PM   #9014
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Consensus around here is that the HD technology fee is a hardware rental fee; e.g., it's the added fee for renting an HD-capable STB. You shouldn't be charged it if all you're renting is the CableCards to go into your own hardware.
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Old 07-01-2014, 10:15 PM   #9015
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They have the ability to remove channels. It's part of the billing system. That's how they can have tiers. Whether they would or not is another matter.
Unless you have certain knowledge to the contrary, I will continue to believe that what they have is a set of billing codes that are tied to packages, premium channels and equipment. There is absolutely no reason for the system to even have the capability to remove individual channels on an account basis.

Is anyone reading this thread incurring this charge from Comcast w/o having any Comcast HD equipment or at least knows someone who is?
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:15 PM   #9016
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Consensus around here is that the HD technology fee is a hardware rental fee; e.g., it's the added fee for renting an HD-capable STB. You shouldn't be charged it if all you're renting is the CableCards to go into your own hardware.
I don't think Comcast has that high regard for the consensus of TiVo Community forum users.

Like I've said, I've had this argument with Comcast a few times and they won't remove the HD Technology fee. The latest pricing guide they sent me, puts it under the services section (same as the outlet fee and things like adding Spanish channels) as opposed to the equipment section.

What's really out of whack and what the FCC should look into is Comcast saying the equipment rental fee is $1.50 for a cable box with the service fee being $9.95.

Quote:
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Unless you have certain knowledge to the contrary, I will continue to believe that what they have is a set of billing codes that are tied to packages, premium channels and equipment. There is absolutely no reason for the system to even have the capability to remove individual channels on an account basis.

Is anyone reading this thread incurring this charge from Comcast w/o having any Comcast HD equipment or at least knows someone who is?
They wouldn't put individual channels on the billing codes, but they could have two codes for each package: one with HD channels and one without.
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:44 PM   #9017
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They wouldn't put individual channels on the billing codes, but they could have two codes for each package: one with HD channels and one without.
I thought of that. If they try it with me, I'll tell them that I want the customer owned equipment credits to reflect the cost of their HD DVR. If they refuse to either do that or rescind the new charge, I'll switch to "Digital Economy", replace the full SD cable box (it's feeding my Series 2) with a DTA and make one of CableCARDed TiVos the primary.

Either that or drop cable entirely and go OTA. Retaining that option is one of the reasons I went with the base Roamio
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Old 07-03-2014, 07:31 AM   #9018
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On a lesser note, has anyone seen the $1.50 "Broadcast TV Fee" added to their bill yet? It was announced effective 1Jan14 but was waived for certain customers until 1Jun14.

Just curious.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:08 AM   #9019
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The $1.50 fee started appearing on my bill in March. The good news is my franchise fee dropped from $3.46 to $1.76 at the same time.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:37 AM   #9020
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The price list included with my latest bill has the fee under "Basic Services" and seems to apply only to the "Limited Basic" package. It hasn't (yet) been added to my bill. I have the "Digital Starter" package.
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Old 07-03-2014, 03:36 PM   #9021
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Broadcast TV Fee was supposed to have started July 1st in the Seattle area.

There are some other fee changes at the same time including Additional Outlet going from from $9.25 to $9.95.

I just returned a DTA I was no longer using so it will probably be a wash or slight increase for me on the next bill.
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Old 07-04-2014, 08:22 AM   #9022
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I got my July bill and I'm not sure what to make of it. Comcast removed the two outlet fees (and 3 valued customer outlets???), but they did so by removing 2 cable cards (a loss of $5 credit) and adding a HD digital converter ($0 charge). The HD Technology fee is still there ($9.95), so all in all I'm paying $5 more than I had been and $14.95 that I should from what I've been told.

I'm a bit hesitant to rock the boat and try to get the HD converter and tech fee removed since Comcast could decide to tack the $19.90 (2 x $9.95) outlet fee charges back on which would be a net $15 per month assuming they added my 2 cable cards back on.

It would be easier if I could actually deal with their billing department and not India phone support.
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Old 07-04-2014, 09:27 AM   #9023
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The $1.50 fee started appearing on my bill in March. The good news is my franchise fee dropped from $3.46 to $1.76 at the same time.
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The price list included with my latest bill has the fee under "Basic Services" and seems to apply only to the "Limited Basic" package. It hasn't (yet) been added to my bill. I have the "Digital Starter" package.
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Broadcast TV Fee was supposed to have started July 1st in the Seattle area.

There are some other fee changes at the same time including Additional Outlet going from from $9.25 to $9.95.

I just returned a DTA I was no longer using so it will probably be a wash or slight increase for me on the next bill.
Boy, Comcast's billing procedures really are--both literally and figuratively--"all over the map!"

I was responsible for negotiating a bulk services agreement for Comcast CTV on behalf of my condominium HOA and was concerned that Comcast would try to pass this fee on to our homeowners. Our MDU account exec assured us that this would not be the case and it hasn't occurred so far to the best of my knowledge.

Quote:
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I got my July bill and I'm not sure what to make of it. Comcast removed the two outlet fees (and 3 valued customer outlets???), but they did so by removing 2 cable cards (a loss of $5 credit) and adding a HD digital converter ($0 charge). The HD Technology fee is still there ($9.95), so all in all I'm paying $5 more than I had been and $14.95 that I should from what I've been told.

I'm a bit hesitant to rock the boat and try to get the HD converter and tech fee removed since Comcast could decide to tack the $19.90 (2 x $9.95) outlet fee charges back on which would be a net $15 per month assuming they added my 2 cable cards back on.

It would be easier if I could actually deal with their billing department and not India phone support.
It's shocking (or should be, anyway) how much they are charging for these services. Just know, for your background information and negotiating position, that there is a lot of price inflation built into those fees. For example, our per-unit monthly charge for Digital Starter (one tier below your Digital Preferred service) is about one-third what you are paying. Even allowing for the multi-unit incentive and the slightly smaller range of programming, that's a whopping discount from the street pricing. And we are receiving other discounts and freebies to boot.

If I were an individual customer I would keep this in mind when pushing back against all those tack-on charges. For example, in your case, I would try to get that HBO $10 "promotion" for free at least for a 4 to 6-month promotional period (and then keep asking to get it renewed each time the promotional period is about to end). I believe the "retention specialists" have the authority to exercise this code freely. That alone would save you $120 per year over what you're currently paying and about $200 over the street price for HBO.

N.B. I myself have no Comcast equipment on my individual account other than two CableCARDs and am not paying the HD Technology fee, just $9.95 for "Digital Service" (ADO) minus $5.00 COE credit for a monthly total of $5.07 including taxes.

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Old 07-05-2014, 06:37 PM   #9024
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I've already gotten a $15 per month credit from the retention department. I think that's what triggered the audit in the first place.

I just realized that I should probably straighten this out with Comcast since if their billing system thinks I only have 1 card they could periodically deactivate my 2 other cards like they did earlier this month.

I could ask them to remove the HD fee just to see what happens, but billing is only around during the day so I'd have to call from work and wouldn't see the results of what they are doing.
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Old 07-06-2014, 03:02 PM   #9025
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The worst they did to me was charge 2 outlet fees and 2 HD fees for one series three that I had. All because I had 2 cable cards in it.
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Old 07-07-2014, 04:02 PM   #9026
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Okay I called Comcast and spoke with billing. I had the person remove the HD converter on my account and also had him remove the HD Technology Fee (or at least he said he did). He had me test my HD channels (thank you TiVo iOS app) and they still worked.

I didn't push for adding the two extra cable cards to back onto my bill to get the $2.50 per card credit since I'm not currently being charged the additional outlet fee for them, so technically I shouldn't have been getting a credit for them in the first place. I was using the extra credits as an offset of the HD Tech fee.

So basically I lost an extra $5 credit a month, but the removal of the HD Tech fee ($9.95) more than offsets that. That's assuming the guy did what he said he did. He said there were a lot of changes to my account last month when they were cleaning up my bill.

The only thing that worries me is that the person said my two other cablecards on my account were listed as "placeholders" which he said are for cards that are "not in use". He said Comcast has the ability to see what cablecards are in use, which I know is not true, so I'm not sure what problems will be caused by having them show as "not in use" when they are actively being used in my TiVo boxes. I don't want them to get automatically deactivated again like they were a few weeks ago.
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Old 07-08-2014, 06:39 AM   #9027
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The only thing that worries me is that the person said my two other cablecards on my account were listed as "placeholders" which he said are for cards that are "not in use". He said Comcast has the ability to see what cablecards are in use, which I know is not true, so I'm not sure what problems will be caused by having them show as "not in use" when they are actively being used in my TiVo boxes. I don't want them to get automatically deactivated again like they were a few weeks ago.
I would also be concerned that "not in use" means that at some point they will stop working in the next week or so.

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Old 07-08-2014, 07:08 AM   #9028
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MDU contracts

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I was responsible for negotiating a bulk services agreement for Comcast CTV on behalf of my condominium HOA and was concerned that Comcast would try to pass this fee on to our homeowners. Our MDU account exec assured us that this would not be the case and it hasn't occurred so far to the best of my knowledge.

N.B. I myself have no Comcast equipment on my individual account other than two CableCARDs and am not paying the HD Technology fee, just $9.95 for "Digital Service" (ADO) minus $5.00 COE credit for a monthly total of $5.07 including taxes.
I'd like to hear from more HOA residents. I've seen some webpages rally against renewing master contracts. Some MDU differences can be great, but there are a few simple things that become a pain.

Like adding a Cable Modem, there are no bundles available and the stand alone pricing can be absurdly high if there's no specials running.

It's impossible to tell if we're getting the services the master contract pays for because we don't know what was promised when it was negotiated.

Related, the lineup we would get was not digital starter, and was not digital preferred. Nobody could tell me if this was right or wrong, but it seemed clear even if it was wrong, they were powerless to ever fix it.
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Old 07-08-2014, 08:51 AM   #9029
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I'd like to hear from more HOA residents. I've seen some webpages rally against renewing master contracts. Some MDU differences can be great, but there are a few simple things that become a pain.
We signed a 10-year contract in 2011 which we can opt out of after the first five years without penalty. It has a clause limiting annual increases and included a sizable signing bonus. Obviously, when you sign a contract you (and the service provider) are incurring a certain number of obligations; there will be drawbacks, but the advantages--even beyond discounted pricing--are very attractive. It's advisable that your community, either as a group or via your board of directors, carefully weigh the pros and cons and establish a well defined position before entering into contract negotiations.

For example, we could have negotiated for inclusion of internet and/or voice communications but elected to allow our over 300 residents the option of choosing to add these services on their own--whether from Comcast or another provider. Otherwise, the HOA dues would have increased substantially at the expense of the many residents who either didn't want the additional services or were already receiving them from another provider and didn't wish to change. CTV was an overwhelming desire for our owners (and for prospective buyers in our community), and the discounts available via a BSA made it a no-brainer in spite of the relatively few owners who either didn't want CTV or preferred a different provider. Besides, omitting CTV from the HOA would have put us at a disadvantage vis-a-vis most other comparable condominium complexes in our area in terms of real-estate marketability.

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Like adding a Cable Modem, there are no bundles available and the stand alone pricing can be absurdly high if there's no specials running.
Our residents who wish to add additional services from Comcast, such as premium CTV channels or internet, have access to discounted pricing relative to published street prices.

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It's impossible to tell if we're getting the services the master contract pays for because we don't know what was promised when it was negotiated.

Related, the lineup we would get was not digital starter, and was not digital preferred. Nobody could tell me if this was right or wrong, but it seemed clear even if it was wrong, they were powerless to ever fix it.
Any services, costs, or stipulations that were "promised" in the negotiations are written into the contract; if it's not in the contract, then any "promises" are pretty much meaningless and unenforceable.

If you are in doubt, check the contract your HOA rep signed. If you don't have access to the contract, your property manager or MDU account exec should be able to provide a copy or at least quote from it.
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Old 07-15-2014, 05:28 PM   #9030
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Looks like they're pushing out PKEY1.5.3_F.p.1201 in Houston. I came home and all the channels were scrambled, but a restart cleared it up. On a whim I checked the diagnostics screen and voila!

I had previously gotten them to upgrade me to 1101, but this just appeared on its own.
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