Cable Prices Too High, Consumers Threaten To Switch Providers


Satisfaction among cable TV program retailers when it comes to pricing continues to drop. But telco providers AT&T's U-Verse and Verizon's FiOS still earn the best overall results.

Consumer researcher J.D. Power and Associates says customer satisfaction is down versus a year ago, with consumers particularly upset with the cost or service from cable operators. It says based on a 1,000 point scale, customer satisfaction of the cost of television service is down 14 points to 541.

J.D. Power says "fairness of prices" satisfaction from cable programming packages is 22% lower than telco providers and 18% lower than satellite companies, such as DirecTV and Dish.

But overall consumers do give the thumbs up -- more than a year ago -- to specific services, such as DVRs and video-on-demand.



Frank Perazzini, director of telecommunications at J.D. Power and Associates, stated: "It's apparent, however, that TV providers must better communicate their price-value proposition, as customers are increasingly voicing irritation with the amount of their monthly bill. 74% of customers who say they definitely or probably will change TV providers in the next year cite price as a major reason to switch."

The company's survey says overall customer satisfaction -- among all television service providers -- really hasn't changed much from a year ago, down just three points to 629 in 2010. (The survey rates on a 1,000 point scale.)

The good news for cable operators: digital service. The study says digital cable customers that subscribe to "basic-only" service has increased to 44% in 2010 from 40% in 2009.

For a third consecutive year, AT&T U-verse ranks highest in the West (with an index score of 698) and South (732) regions. AT&T U-verse also ranks highest in the North Central region (728). In the East region, Verizon FiOS ranks highest for a third consecutive year with a score of 679.

1 comment about "Cable Prices Too High, Consumers Threaten To Switch Providers".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. James Smith from J. R. Smith Group, October 8, 2010 at 4:46 a.m.

    MSOs need to circle some wagons around the much feared concept of "ala carte" if they are ultimately going to save their video service sub counts. Consumers are sending the clear message...tiers aren't working any more. Constantly increasing network sub fees are not going to "play-in-Peoria."

    We see market conditions as clear indicators of the looming change in video business models for both network providers and MSOs. Both sides must give a little to save the ship.

Next story loading loading..