As most tech people have heard, Time Warner Cable has raised its modem lease fees from $4 per month to $6 per month. While I think that is steep, I don’t really have a problem with it as it doesn’t affect me. When they started charging the modem lease, I spent $25 for a used cable modem (I have a standard Internet package, so a DOCIS 2.0 modem works fine). My father has been paying the lease fee and asked me about it now that it is going up. The difference with him is that he has telephone service through Time Warner as well. Instead of a standard cable modem, he has an MTA which handles both phone and Internet in one box.
Time Warner doesn’t charge a lease fee for the phone part of the box, but charges a fee for the Internet part of the box. Yes, you read that correctly; my dad is only leasing part of the box and the other part is free. If he doesn’t want to pay the lease fee for the Internet part, he has to buy a separate cable modem (currently around $17 used on eBay), put in a splitter and hook it up. He does NOT return any equipment to Time Warner Cable. So if he does that, he would own his own Internet cable modem, and have a free telephone cable modem, but only use half of it.
This is absolutely insane; someone in corporate said that they must charge a lease fee for all Internet customers that use Time Warner Cable equipment. This makes sense except for telephone customers that don’t have a choice, but to use the TWC supplied MTA. It is quite unfortunate that there is such a monopoly on high speed Internet; AT&T U-verse is an option, but their speeds and prices don’t compare well to cable. We don’t have FIOS in our area, so we’re pretty stuck.