We've received more phone calls and emails about the upcoming Time Warner Cable change in the Triangle than anything in my history of this industry, even more than HD! TWC is even calling, mailing, and emailing customers who only have internet service through them.
What's the deal?
It's really pretty simple. If you live in the Triangle and have a TV that is NOT using a cable box, you will need one of their adapters to get any TV signal AT ALL after May 5th. Time Warner is going full digital then.
While they have an official reason, here is what I suspect is the reason. First - they can get a lot more channels on the digital band. Using digital they also do not have to send all channels if you never watch them. This saves bandwidth. The background reason is probably Google Fiber on the horizon. This is going to be disruptive to their business model. Having additional bandwidth will let them speed up their internet service.
So, how do you hook the adapter up?
The digital adapter is a fairly small box, but bigger than an Apple TV. (It's closer to the size of the first Apple TVs.) It needs AC power.
- You will need to remove the coax cable from the back of your TV and connect it to the adapter.
- If your TV is fairly new and has an HDMI connection, you will connect the HDMI from the box to the HDMI input on your TV.
- If your TV does not have an HDMI connection, you will have to use a short coax cable and assign a channel.
- You then have to install the remote eye pick up so the supplied remote control will be able to talk to the adapter box. (You can program the remote to operate your TV.)
- Finally, you have to activate the adapter.
The adapter will give you much better picture and sound than you were getting with the analog feed. The adapter is free through June 30, 2016. After that the cost will be “the prevailing rate” per month per box depending on where you are. Of course, this pricing is up to Time Warner: right now they say it's $2.75 + tax per month.
On their website, it does look like you can get more channels with the new box if you pay for extended service. This would save a few bucks per month over their standard cable box. If you are just getting basic service at the TV, you will get all the channels you used to according to their info. I think we will know more after they make the switch.
If you are uncomfortable installing the adapter yourself, we can come and do it for you. Just call us and we will schedule a time. We can give you estimated pricing based upon how many TVs you have, but the actual cost will depend on TV location and how difficult it is to find a spot for the adapter. We will do our best to get to you as fast as possible. However, we do anticipate a huge spike in demand for our service techs as May 5th approaches.
The Bottom Line
If you have a TV without a cable box and you are getting your TV service from Time Warner, that TV is going to be a boat anchor after May 5th without an adapter box attached to it!
To start the process, you need to call Time Warner and order as many boxes as you need.