Big cable operators really have it in for their loyal customers. Here are three ways that Cox, the third largest cable company in the United States, is shortchanging their users.
Overage Fees for Internet Use
Cox is telling its customers how much they can use the internet. Last year, Cox started charging overage fees to the tune of $50 per month. The standard plan gives customers 1 terabyte per month. Going over that allotment now costs customers $10 for 50 gigabytes. For customers who want more data, Cox offers a $30-per-month fee that adds 500GB to their standard 1TB plan. Cox tried to minimize the impact by announcing that this data cap will only affect 2% of its users. However, consumers who use multiple connected devices in their homes can get to that cap pretty quickly. This feels more like a penalty than a way to mitigate costs. Cable companies don’t regulate how much cable television a consumer watches. So why are they trying to regulate how much internet a customer uses? Some believe that this may be an effort to keep consumers from cutting the cord. If they can’t switch to online video, they’re stuck subscribing to cable TV.
Other Hidden Fees
Customers think they’re getting a great deal on their cable subscription but their bills don’t reflect that. This is because Cox is opaque with their pricing. A new customer may get what seems like a great deal when they first sign up, but many new customer promotions expire. Customers, without realizing it, start paying a much higher monthly rate than they anticipated. For example, if a customer signs up for Contour TV (140+ channels), they can have it for $64.00/month for 12 months. After that, it’s $84.99. This is true of all their packages. Cox also charges fees and taxes that customers don’t expect or even know about. While taxes are mandatory, other types of fees are not. Cox lays it all out in the fine print: “Additional jacks, inside wiring, reconnection, activation, taxes, franchise fees, and surcharges (including a video Broadcast Surcharge of up to $10.00 and Regional Sports Surcharge (up to $9.00, depending on Cox market)) are additional.” Furthermore, customers get screwed with equipment fees and service installation fees. When the bill comes, the final monthly rate is typically quite different than what the customer agreed to.
Whether it’s opaque pricing, hidden fees, or just terrible service, one look at customer reviews tells you everything you need to know about how Cox treats its customers.
Don’t let the corporate giants dictate the terms. Billshark is ready to take a bite out of consumers’ monthly bills. We’re really good at it and we’re going to make sure that our cable company doesn’t take advantage of you.