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Most Bright House Customers Unaffected By Price Increase

Hernando Today
Published:   |   Updated: May 13, 2013 at 05:58 PM
TAMPA -

More than 60 percent of Bright House users pay for two or more services, so they will avoid paying a $3 per month increase for cable or high-speed Internet, a company spokesman said.

The cable company announced this week it would raise prices for cable customers starting in March. The basic rates would jump from $49.49 to $52.49.

Bright House spokesman Joe Durkin said the costs for digital video recording and hi-definition technology keep escalating, as well as prices imposed by the networks.

Those who pay for "bundles" of service will not be affected.

"The majority of customers in Tampa are double play or triple play customers," Durkin said. "They are realizing the cost savings of all three of our services."

High-speed Internet customers also will see their rates increase by $3 per month. Phone-only customers will not see an increase.

Durkin said next month's increase in high-speed services will be the first in four or five years.

The increases prompted county commissioners to fire off a letter to Bright House informing them of their displeasure.

The county attorney told the board the company had a right to increase rates because there is "effective competition" from satellite providers, such as DirecTV and DISH Network.

"We do hear those complaints and they're understandable," said Durkin.

He argued Bright House still offers "great value" for home entertainment. He pointed out that a pay-per-view movie costs $1.99 through Bright House and it can be viewed any time in the 24 hours after the order is made.

By comparison, a family of four would have to pay more than $50 at a movie theater if they were to buy popcorn and/or drinks, he said.

Verizon FiOS, another cable, Internet and digital phone provider, is available in Pasco and Hillsborough counties, but not in Hernando County.

Anyone in Hernando who wants digital cable service can only order it through Bright House.

"What we at Bright House are seeing during these tough economic times is customers taking advantage of the significant savings by bundling their services," Durkin said.

The cable company has more than 1 million subscribers in the Tampa market.

How Bright House bundle package (cable, Internet, digital phone) stacks up against other companies in other markets:

Bright House (Tampa) - $109.95.

Cox (Gainesville/Ocala) - $110.25.

Verizon FiOS (Tampa) - $99.99 (first-year special).


Reporter Tony Holt can be reached at 352-544-5283 or wholt@hernandotoday.com.

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