Comcast (Xfinity) CableCard Price Increase?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by lickwid, Nov 26, 2018.

  1. lickwid

    lickwid Member

    102
    1
    Oct 2, 2005
    SF Bay Area, CA

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    I'm in the SF Bay Area. I own 3 Tivo boxes. For as long as I can remember, probably last 10 years, I've always gotten my first cablecard free as part of my TV package, and any additional cablecard was about $1.50-$2.00. As of the last 2 years (as far back as I can review online bills), I've paid $3.00 total for 2 additional cablecards. This latest bill, They are now charging me $9.95 per CableCard for a grand total of $29.85. No longer providing a free cablecard as part of my TV package. Has anyone else experienced something like this recently?

    Might vary from market to market, just checking. Thank you.
     
  2. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

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    sweet home, al
    do you have any comcast equipment, or do you only use 3 cablecards? if only cablecards, they've likely coded your outlets incorrectly (possibly failing to designate one as your primary device), because you're correct, without comcast equipment, the primary outlet/cablecard is generally included with your package.

    as far as the cost of the two additional outlets/cablecards, it's been $9.95 each in our market for quite a while, less a $2.50 customer owned equipment credit. comcast has been working to re-align billing across different markets for a couple of years, in hopes of providing more consistent billing practices nationwide.

    bottom line, though, it still can vary between markets - i'd call and ask for a billing supervisor.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
  3. kokishin

    kokishin Active Member

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    Silicon Valley
    I live in San Jose. Just checked my Oct comcast bill. I have one cable card for my Roamio Pro. Still free. I also get a $2.50 monthly credit for owning my own equipment (my Tivos).
     
  4. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo Active Member

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    Dec 18, 2002
    I had this happen to me. It was one of the things that tipped me over the edge about Comcast. They market at a national level packages where the first outlet is free, but then the local operations just make stuff up. Don't try to fix it by phone: this just takes you to a national call center who won't be able to fix it. Best to go to the local store and see if they can fix it. Or pray. Or just say goodbye to Comcast and don't look back.
     
  5. krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    Nov 25, 2003

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    There used to be a “ComcastCares” email address that was helpful. Maybe check Twitter for the same.

    Normal pricing is closer to what you’re now experiencing. The $1.50 price for additional CableCARDs was supposedly only for additional CableCARDs within the same device (such as for older TiVos and before M-Cards). A separate $2.50 Customer-owned equipment credit should be registered on your bill for each TiVo DVR used in place of a Comcast-supplied box included with your service package (whether the primary outlet for your TV package or the “Additional Outlet” service). So the net costs should be:

    -$2.50 - TiVo DVR at primary outlet
    $7.45 - each additional TiVO DVR
     
  6. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

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    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    it sounds as if the op's bill may have been computer audited. when it happened to me, i received duplicate equipment credits for a couple of years (until the next audit). :)

    the local office used to be the best way to correct billing code errors in our market, until they launched the "experience" store (next to apple). now, they're only staffed with sales reps who can do very little, other than lease equipment, sell packages, and add a la carte services, with 2 atm's to take payments (they will sometimes walk with you to the atm and tap the touch screen for you :rolleyes: ).

    if the call is placed during regular business hours, and is routed to a domestic call center, the reps are very capable, and have the ability to quickly address and correct billing issues, even considering differences between local markets. i needed to call this morning, and was off the phone in 5 minutes.

    when i hear a filipino or mexican accent when calling for billing issues, i hang up and try later. not only are they usually a waste of time, they sometimes end up making matters much worse.
     
  7. lickwid

    lickwid Member

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    Oct 2, 2005
    SF Bay Area, CA
    I appreciate everyone's response. I actually currently have a promotion X1 box, so that might be coded as the primary box, even though that box is supposed to be completely free. It appears I was audited and been converted to the new billing system, unfortunately. Owning a Tivo used to worth it as I was paying a minimal cost per month for each additional box, but if I'm paying $7.45 a month for each box (on top of the cost of the Tivo + lifetime), might not be worth it moving forward.
     
  8. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

    11,958
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    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    are you using hd equipment? to be fair to tivo, remember - if you replaced each cablecard with an x1, your comcast charges could skyrocket. here, it's around $30 each for each hd x1 above the included box (last time i checked). also, with comcast hd equipment on your account, you could also be paying the $9.95 monthly hd access fee that many customers in other markets avoid with only tivo equipment.

    if any of your tivo's have 4 or more tuners, you could look into returning the x1, dropping the $9.95 hd access fee, selling 2 of your lifetimed tivo's, then replace them with 2 networked tivo mini's (the number depending how many tivo's might be used simultaneously, and the number of tuners needed to record content for everyone in the home).

    having a dedicated dvr on each outlet is expensive either way, tivo or comcast, most lifetimed hd tivo's series 4 and higher have a reasonable resell value, and tivo still could be the better value.
     
  9. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

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    Staunton, VA
    Same happened here 2 years ago when the local franchise (ex-Adelphia), upgraded their billing system to what's apparently the Comcast standard. Although we had moved to a Roamio Pro and a Mini, we still had CableCARDS in our old 2 old S3 OLEDs that we were not really recording with which I promptly turned in after checking in at the local office to make sure they couldn't do anything about it.

    I would also recommend turning the X1 in so one of your TiVo's with CableCARD is your primary device with no outlet charge (and free CableCARD) and getting Mini's for the other 2 locations. What models of TiVo's do you have and is there a reason that you need to have 3?

    Scott
     
  10. lickwid

    lickwid Member

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    Oct 2, 2005
    SF Bay Area, CA
    We have a Roamio Plus, Roamio and an old Premiere. I looked into the Tivo Minis, but I can't remember why I didn't go that route. I may have to re-visit that if it makes sense. Is it pretty simple plug and play if I have existing coaxial connections at each of the current Tivo locations in my home?
     
    PSU_Sudzi likes this.
  11. tommage1

    tommage1 Well-Known Member

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    Around Chicago it goes like this. The first cable card is free, in fact you get a 2.50 customer equipment credit since you don't use a box. Any others are charged 9.95 a month as an "additional" outlet, but you get the 2.50 each credit on those too. So basically each additional cable card costs about 7.50. Not sure how you were getting it so "cheap" before but adding that X1 probably gummed up the works. Relative of mine, I got them Minis (they were using those digital adapters for other rooms, Comcast started charging too much for those..............) It IS nice to have multiple Tivos as you can stream/transfer between them (at least on TE3) but if you have to pay another 7.50 a month each have to think about it. I use one cable Tivo, others are OTA, can stream/transfer between all (all on TE3).

    Minis, not exactly plug and play, you'd need to check how to setup here, a lot of variables.
     
  12. krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    I’m another vote for reducing Comcast “Additional Outlet” charges through the use of TiVo Minis. We have 2 CableCARD’d Pros, a 4-tuner Roamio tuning from OTA, and 7 Minis. We simply couldn’t/wouldn’t have this flexible of a setup with Comcast gear.

    And, yeah, you could drop ALL charges and net just the single $2.50 credit by dropping to a single DVR and returning the X1 box. The only potential drawback that I see in returning your Comcast X1 box is if you were leaning on Comcast for free Netflix (and soon Amazon Prime). Well, some have also complained of Comcast refusing to accept the return of boxes and threaten promo pricing when doing so. YMMV.

    Yes, Mini setup is relatively simple, even more if you already know all the relevant coax outlets are working and interconnected — though possibly requiring the addition of a MoCA adapter depending on where you have Ethernet connectivity.

    How are your current DVRs networked?
     
  13. mazman

    mazman Member

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    Nov 13, 2002
    Alamo, CA
    I'm also in the SF Bay Area and have two TiVo boxes and 2 mini's. Yesterday, after having service at my address for six years, Comcast charged me for an additional outlet ($9.95) and gave me two $2.50 credits for the two cablecards I have. As someone mentioned in this thread, Comcast must have computer audited the bill. The $9.95 charge is pure BS, but not much I can do about it. It was fun while it lasted.
     
  14. krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    To be unnecessarily clear, the credit is for each TiVo box (the “customer-owned device”) used in place of a Comcast-supplied box included with the associated service — the main TV package’s primary outlet and the $9.95/mo “Additional Outlet” service. The first CableCARD for each device is also included free as part of each service where a Comcast-supplied digital STB has been supplanted, for use in the customer-owned equipment. If there’s some TiVo box in use that doesn’t work with Multistream CableCARDs, any additional CableCARDs for that device would be charged at the $1.50/mo rate.
     
    HerronScott likes this.
  15. lickwid

    lickwid Member

    102
    1
    Oct 2, 2005
    SF Bay Area, CA
    It looks like the Bay Area market may have been one of the lucky markets that didn't switch over to the new billing system. I'm surprised there hasn't been more uproar here or on Reddit or similar communities. Possibly, people haven't gotten their latest bills yet, but who knows. I'm more irked as I just re-upped my contract. Was paying about $140 a month and it jumped up to close to $170 with all these price hikes. So now I'm stuck in contract for 22 more months at the additional cost (which I wasn't expecting), else pay the ETF fee and cut the cord.
     
  16. shannon94188

    shannon94188 New Member

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    Apr 7, 2005
    Ouch, we are in the bay area and just got hit with this today too - $19.90 in extra charges. Ugh!
     
  17. mazman

    mazman Member

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    Nov 13, 2002
    Alamo, CA
    Ok. This is weird. When Comcast processed the automatic payment for my bill, they reversed the additional outlet charge. It's also not showing up on the next bill. My guess is either they charged people that shouldn't have been charged so they reversed the charges for everyone, or perhaps they need to provide notification of the new additional outlet charge.

    Anyone else seeing this?
     

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