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Your Time Warner Bill May Cost You A Lot More Soon

By April 2, 2009

Bad news for customers of Time Warner's RoadRunner Internet service. According to Business Week magazine, Rochester, NY, Austin and San Antonio, Texas, and Greensboro, North Carolina will be the next 'test markets' for a bandwidth cap.

The news was broken online yesterday and unfortunately, was NOT an April Fool's joke. The report says that the cap will be around 40GB with a much more expensive 'super tier' cap of 100GB.

Now, let's put this all into perspective. If you are a family with multiple computer users, one family of four doing research for homework, watching a few YouTube videos or playing x-Box Live or other online gaming services will easily blow through 40GB. Which means that for every GB you use after, you will be paying $1 on top of your base monthly fee.

Call to Time Warner's customer service line brought about a lot of confused people, most of whom had no idea that San Antonio was about to become a market for this, and those who did had no idea when the test run might be implemented. I called the number (210) 244-0500 several times, talked to more than one person and generally there was just confusion and no new information.

Time Warner says that infrastructure upgrades are too expensive as-is, even though no upgrades have been done in some time, and none have been announced. So where is the money going, since the service itself will not improve?

Two more questions for Time Warner - those who use less than 40GB, will they get a refund or lower price of some sort? If you are going to ask customers to pay per gigabyte, it seems only fair that those using less than 40 per month should also pay per gigabyte, meaning less. And what about people who are locked into price guarantees of one or two years? Are they going to be subjected to this test, in breach of their contract?

Time Warner needs to figure out these questions, and let their ill-informed customer service team in on the information. This surely won't go over well with most customers, many of which may switch to ATT, who currently has no limits in San Antonio, and has tested 150GB limits in other markets, almost 4x what Time Warner allows.


June 4, 2009 at 2:46 am
(1) San Antonio Internet says:

I think this is a bad move on Time Warner’s part as the masses are going to shift over to ATT and may even partake in the ATT Uverse package which would effectively making ATT their all-in-one package for cable, phone, and Internet.

I completely agree with you that if they’re going to charge for going over they need to refund when you go under. Of course, they probably wouldn’t want to entertain any discussion on this aspect.

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