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Time Warner Cable: No Consumer Demand For Gigabit Internet

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the give-the-people-what-we-have dept.

The Internet 573

Freshly Exhumed writes "Chris Welch at The Verge tells us: 'Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology Conference moments ago, Time Warner Cable's Chief Financial Officer Irene Esteves seemed dismissive of the impact Google Fiber is having on consumers. "We're in the business of delivering what consumers want, and to stay a little ahead of what we think they will want," she said when asked about the breakneck internet speeds delivered by Google's young Kansas City network. "We just don't see the need of delivering that to consumers."' The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

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Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (4, Interesting)

crazyjj (2598719) | about a year ago | (#43033507)

Just a play from the classic Apple playbook: Any feature that our competitor has that we don't is something customers don't want or need--until we do have it, and then it's awesome.

Actually, in all fairness, it's a play from pretty much everyone's playbook. I mean what do you expect him to say, "Well, the truth is we're jealous"?

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033557)

If it was capped at 10GB per month, I wouldn't see a need either tbh. Thank Christ I live in a country where capping is unheard of. That's what actual free markets do for you.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033643)

Thank Christ I live in a country where capping is unheard of.

I'm pretty sure zombie sun lords have nothing to do with your internet service.

Is TWC still capping bandwidth? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033697)

Right - if your gigabit connection is capped at something like 30GB, then you could only back up a quarter of your TB HD every month, and provided your remote backup site has the bandwidth so that TWC's connection is the limiter, it should take you far less than an hour to do it. Why would you pay $100+ a month when you could get greater capacity AND higher average throughput from mailing TB HDDs through the USPS?

Hah, captcha was "clipped"!

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (-1, Offtopic)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year ago | (#43033587)

Dear God. Not every article is about Apple. Like this one. The Apple hater hysteria is getting old.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | about a year ago | (#43033665)

So Apple users don't want gigabit internet?

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033787)

They don't need it. HTML5 is better.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Funny)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#43033591)

yeah.. I could think of lots of people who would like a gigabit internet connection.

however if it comes with rules I'd think TWC to put on it then whats the point. you get like 5 minutes of service per month so what's the point?

How about the price? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033599)

How about the price?

in rotterdam you can get 200 mbit for 30 euro's, 600 mbit for 37 euro's and 1Gbit for a few hundred euro's more...

I love to have 1Gbit, but I guess 600mbit is okay for now, well hell I would be happy if I could get 200 mbit at all...

It's just how much people are willing to pay for it. I think it still costs far too much....

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#43033661)

Just a play from the classic Apple playbook: Any feature that our competitor has that we don't is something customers don't want or need--until we do have it, and then it's awesome.

Yep. It's called "timing".

A year or two from now the equipment will be cheaper and there might be enough potential customers to make a business case for installing it. Hell, you might even get 10Gbit hardware for the same price as this year's 1Gbit.

Buying before then, just to keep up with a potential competitor's experiment, would be a silly move.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033675)

Urm, if you think someone referred to as "Irene" and "she" is a "him", then we can safely discard the rest of your post.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

alen (225700) | about a year ago | (#43033713)

which competitor sells gigabit ethernet in the USA?
Google? they only have it in a few neighborhoods in one of the smallest cities in america

google is just trying to create some hype hoping someone else ponies up the cash to build out a new network for them to make money on

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033715)

3dfx: 32bit colors are completely unneccessary.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Insightful)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about a year ago | (#43033751)

Time Warner is doing a variation on it though. What the guy really said was:

"We offer high-bandwidth service in some markets, but people don't subscribe to it"

What he's not expanding on, is the reason why they don't subscribe. Is it because people don't want it, or is it because they've made is so damn expensive that people don't see value in it compared to the lower-bandwidth service?

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Informative)

characterZer0 (138196) | about a year ago | (#43033823)

In my case, it is because although down speed is higher, up speed and latency are no better.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

DizTorDed (164355) | about a year ago | (#43033881)

Exactly! I want faster internet. I would use faster internet. I cannot afford their faster internet.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033973)

Precisely. If I recall correctly, Comcasst offers 100 MB connectivity in my area for around $300 per month. Google's 1 GB fiber connectivity is somewhere between $70 and $80 per month. Do I want 100 MB, or even 1 GB? Oh, hell yeah. But can I pay more than around $100 per month for an überfast connection? Unfortunately, no. It's not lack of desire.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

SoothingMist (1517119) | about a year ago | (#43033775)

My personal opinion is that Time Warner's statement may well be far more telling than "our customers don't want it". My experience has been that it is common practice in the automation world to challenge a requirement if the purveyor can not meet the requirement. It seems to me that cable companies in general are behind the power curve. Their mantra that their cost per channel delivered keeps dropping is no longer perceived as a meaningful value statement in the face of constantly rising consumer cost for what the consumer actually wants.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (1)

FuzzNugget (2840687) | about a year ago | (#43033859)

It's probably more like: we don't want to actually spend the money to build out the infrastructure, we'd rather just keep providing service that's as piss-poor as we can get away with while continuing to jack the rates and bitch at the government for more handouts.

that's great! let them! (1)

poetmatt (793785) | about a year ago | (#43033913)

That's as explicit an acknowledgement that google fiber is. Let them deny it in this way as much as they want. They may as well have said the 640k is enough for anyone, line. Please, let them continue the road to denial and obsolescence, as they have been clearly panicking.

Re:Translation: We Don't Have Gigabit Fiber (5, Insightful)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about a year ago | (#43033915)

It's not that.

It's that if they offered gigabit Internet, then they'd have to upgrade all that other stuff to handle the bandwidth. That's why they put caps on, that's why they overcharge. It's because they can make tons of money now for the shareholders.

They're a US utility. They don't upgrade. They wait until it falls apart and then they replace as little as possible.

I speed up my internet using a HOSTS file (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033535)

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You can see my dilemma. What if this is merely a ruse by an APK impostor to try and get people to delete APK's messages, perhaps all over the web? I can't be a party to such an event! My involvement with APK began at a very late stage in the game. While APK has made a career of trolling popular online forums since at least the year 2000 (newsgroups and IRC channels before that)- my involvement with APK did not begin until early 2005 . OSY is one of the many forums that APK once frequented before the sane people there grew tired of his garbage and banned him. APK was banned from OSY back in 2001. 3.5 years after his banning he begins to send a variety of abusive emails to the operator of OSY, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke threatening to sue him for libel, claiming that the APK on OSY was fake.

My reputation as a professional in this field clearly shows in multiple publications in this field in written print, & also online in various GOOD capacities since 1996 to present day. This has happened since I was first published in Playgirl Magazine in 1996 & others to present day, with helpful tools online in programs, & professionally sold warez that were finalists @ Westminster Dog Show 2000-2002.

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FROM -> Man - how many times have I dusted you in tech debates that you have decided to troll me by ac posts for MONTHS now, OR IMPERSONATING ME AS YOU DID HERE and you were caught in it by myself & others here, only to fail each time as you have here?)...

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I can think of a few rea$on$ (5, Insightful)

radiumsoup (741987) | about a year ago | (#43033541)

The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

Um, yeah - that's because it's waaaaaaaay overpriced.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (3, Funny)

pinfall (2430412) | about a year ago | (#43033595)

The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

Um, yeah - that's because it's waaaaaaaay overpriced.

I think $20 more per month is a fair price for any extra 1mb, and with the top tier at 35mb its faster than any consumer will ever need! I love my triple lock-in play!

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (5, Insightful)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | about a year ago | (#43033641)

35mb its faster than any consumer will ever need!

Can I quote you on that in 10 years? I remember when 756 kbps was faster than any consumer would ever need. It didn't last long.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (4, Funny)

crazyjj (2598719) | about a year ago | (#43033719)

I can remember telling a friend about ISDN and having him respond with "My god, what would you even *DO* with 128 kbit/s?"

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (1)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | about a year ago | (#43033763)

I was pretty seriously looking into ISDN, but the #!$( telco charged way too much. I always figured it should be competitively priced with a second phone line and an ISP fees. ATT didn't agree with me.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (2)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about a year ago | (#43033969)

Yeah man, I remember getting one of the first 1MB/s (8Mb/s) connections up here back in 1998. Playing UO and being able to outrun people on horses was pretty cool.

My now-ex-wife and I picked places to move based on where the service was available.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (4, Informative)

NettiWelho (1147351) | about a year ago | (#43033707)

The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

Um, yeah - that's because it's waaaaaaaay overpriced.

I think $20 more per month is a fair price for any extra 1mb, and with the top tier at 35mb its faster than any consumer will ever need! I love my triple lock-in play!

Meh, here in Finland I pay 29e/month for this [imgur.com] (uncapped) and I live in a town of 10k people. If they tried to raise their prices they'd lose my business to any of the 4 competing ISP's.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033817)

30 bucks for that is awesome, assuming you aren't trolling.

I remember setting up a myfi for a client that came with an ugly orange piece of paper that said in some countries you can be charged $24.48 per MB for mobile data usage there. I was personally wondering, this side of the moon where it could possibly be that expensive to run a network, as I could pay a courier with a hard drive to fly around the world for much cheaper than that.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (1)

firex726 (1188453) | about a year ago | (#43033985)

Exactly, you have competing service providers.

Here in the US something like 90% of the people have one or two options. Where I live I only have one local provider who is exclusive, if i want cable TV or internet I have to go with them or move out. I pay $80/mth for 5mbps, which even then goes out about once a day at peak times. (officially I pay for 20mbps, but have never seen half of that)

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033721)

My problem is I had the second lowest tier, I dropped to the lowest tier and never saw a difference (not just perception, but in any of the bandwidth tests I performed). The other big problem I have is I'm paying for two tiers above what they claim they're delivering; when I complain they make excuses and promise to look into it. When they look into it they claim to have tried to call me to resolve it but couldn't reach me and close the ticket.

I work for a large employer who contracts out our primary internet connection; my cable company got it lost go round so they're supposed to give us a discount. Between charging me for more than they provide (and not just measured but my bill says I am now on the lowest tier) and not applying the discount, I should half my bill so I've filed a complaint with my employer hoping that will finally get it resolved.

Charge people a reasonable price, charge them what you say you'll charge them, charge them what you advertise you charge, and actually deliver more when people pay more, and they might be interested. I trust Google to do that a lot more than I do Time Warner

Just for the record, the company I'm having issues with is not Time Warner.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033907)

I should add, I pay less and get better bandwidth on my cell phone (including all minutes, texts, tethering fees etc), so I frequently end up teathering to my cell phone even when at home since its cheaper and faster.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (4, Funny)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | about a year ago | (#43033619)

You think that $100 a month for 50mbps is overpriced? Well sir, you must not be part of their target audience, and thus are irrelevant. Your criticism has been disregarded. Thank you, and have a nice day.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (4, Informative)

radiumsoup (741987) | about a year ago | (#43033739)

my sarcasometer is out for repair, so I'm unsure if serious... but I *am* a TWC customer, and I pay for their top residential tier, because I require it for my home business (IT consulting). It's stupid expensive for the upload speeds that I'm offered, which is really what I need the top tier for. I most certainly *am* their target audience, I get no less than two pieces of physical mail per month asking me to go for their TV and phone bundle. They LOVE the fact that they can charge me as much as they do, because I have no viable alternative right now, at least not until I can move to the next town over (Verizon FiOS) or into an office with a fiber provider. The woes of living in the 'burbs.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (2)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#43033673)

They should lose money just because a few geeks are ranting in a forum?

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033771)

$100 for 50mb is horribly overpriced. In Europe you get 200mb fibre connections for that.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (5, Insightful)

AikonMGB (1013995) | about a year ago | (#43033683)

Precisely; her comments have absolutely nothing to do with the demand of higher speeds and quality service, but rather the supply. Her argument is circular -- we don't offer good options, so customers don't choose good options, therefore customers don't want good options, thus there's no need for us to offer good options. That's an awesome flow chart you got there, TWC.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (5, Interesting)

Marcus Erroneous (11660) | about a year ago | (#43033685)

That's my take on it as well. You can kill the demand for any product by pricing it high enough.

Most of these providers are run by folks with the old time telephone company mind set: if it's more than tip and ring, charge for it. The less it's like tip and ring, the more you charge for it. To them, that much bandwidth must be for business use, so charge'em business rates.

In the 90s, GTE was thinking about offering the ability to check your account and pay your bill online. They had the ability but were stumped about how much to charge the customer to do so. They were thinking about charging the customer $8.95 a month for the privilege of checking and paying for their account online. They finally dropped the idea as their studies showed no interest in accessing accounts online for that price. It never occurred to them to offer it as a benefit of being a GTE customer.

Most of those folks are still running the industry in that manner: everything not basic should be offered as a premier option.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | about a year ago | (#43033755)

As I am currently checking out the available options from the 2 providers in my area price does pay a big part in it as well as caps. As I do consume a lot of bandwidth I know in advance to ask about caps and because of this I have been getting a business class connection. I would make use of a faster connection if I could get one but the top speed in my area is 100 mbit/s and is available as a business class connection for the low low price of $250 per month plus what ever dodgy fees, taxes, and service charges they tack on from the cable company. From the phone company I can get a 7mbit/s connection from $160 for an uncapped business class connection or $40 for a residential one capped at 250BG/month.

Re:I can think of a few rea$on$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033875)

And then it only takes 10 minutes of use to blow the cap, after which they charge you *more* per GB than the GBs inside the cap cost.

This last part is what boggles my mind. I mean other than using more than your cap is meant to be punitive.

Little interest? (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033569)

The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

Because you're GOUGING us for them, you whore.

Re:Little interest? (1)

phil_aychio (2438214) | about a year ago | (#43033723)

I spend over $50 per month for what is considered the standard offering...15M down, 1M up. I could spend $50 more to get 50/5, but it really isn't worth it. So, yeah, what she says is probably correct - "We're in the business of delivering what consumers want". Translation: Not too many people are willing to pay twice as much for our fastest offering. ...but at least it isn't capped

Re:Little interest? (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year ago | (#43033959)

I spend over $50 per month for what is considered the standard offering...15M down, 1M up. I could spend $50 more to get 50/5, but it really isn't worth it. So, yeah, what she says is probably correct - "We're in the business of delivering what consumers want". Translation: Not too many people are willing to pay twice as much for our fastest offering. ...but at least it isn't capped

The bottom line is that, for the average user, how many simultaneous netflix streams do you need to be able to watch? I have 6 mbit service and as long as browsing is smooth, and netflix/hulu/whatever streams OK, I could care less if it's rated at 6 mbit, 15 mbit, or 500 mbit. It works for the current use case, so why pay any more? When streaming media is affordable (without pirating it) that requires more than 3-5 mbit to watch, maybe consumers will start to see the benefit of faster services.

Dial up providers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033573)

- "There is no demand for Time Warner internet, We just don't see the need of delivering that kind of breakneck internet speeds to consumers."'

Stating the obvious (4, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year ago | (#43033577)

"We just don't see the need of delivering that to consumers."

That is the core problem. Thanks to TWC for stating it so well.

Translation: We won't improve our infrastructure.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033583)

Until forced to by congress or act of god....

Why should we have enough bandwidth to fulfill our contractual obligations when we can fend off the big users with threats of disconnect simply by accusing them of downloading copyrighted content via p2p?

Hah hah hah (skipping merrily as depositing bags of cash from the customers we are screwing left and right) why would we indeed?

Well maybe... (4, Interesting)

DnemoniX (31461) | about a year ago | (#43033585)

This is because you price it out of reach for your average customers and only those willing to pay your ridiculous fees for it purchase it....
I would absolutely pay for a Gig connection to my home if it had a sane price tag!

Re:Well maybe... (2)

SailorSpork (1080153) | about a year ago | (#43033783)

TWC has a *near* monopoly on my area (Cincinnati), so it is what I use. The moment Cincinnati Bell Fioptics or Verizon FIOS is available on my street, I'm outs.

they have a point of sorts (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033605)

They (currently) have a point. Slashdot crowd aside perhaps, most normal users don't actively need or use more download bandwidth than required for a few incoming video streams, say 10 megabits assuming 2 megabits or so per stream. Yes, there are bandwidth heavy consumer applications -- e.g. remote backup services. Most people currently don't use them, or stress their existing bandwidth for that matter...

Of course, if you build it the applicaitions will eventually come. NOBODY will ever need more than 512K of RAM. Right? Right?

It's all about cost (2)

DigitalSorceress (156609) | about a year ago | (#43033611)

If I had an option for GigaBit, I'd take it - but only if it was priced correctly and was free of onerous TOS. There is most certainly a demand for fast, free (as in speech) Internet connections - and a willingness to pay for them, but not $$stupid$$ amounts and not with a zillion strings attached.

I love how the cable cos were advertising things like "your speed is X which means you could download Y whole movies in Z time" but if you actually USE the bandwidth, they cap you... and maybe even send you sharing violation notices or whatever... and they tell you you can't "run any kind of server"

I pay several hundred dollars a month for a dedicated physical server at a commercial datacenter hosting a number of VPS instances for my web hosting needs... the right "business level" connectivity for my home might tempt me, but not with all the strings that local ISPs seem to have. (also, I don't have N+1 Power redundancy at home, so maybe it's not really such a good idea) /meh //but I want GigabitInternet ///just not enough to be willing to move for it

Why does no one choose those speeds? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033613)

Because Time Warner charges an arm and a leg, and their customer service sucks.

Charge a reasonable price, don't lie to your customers every time they call, and send your technicians on time, and people will buy.

too expensive (3, Informative)

dywolf (2673597) | about a year ago | (#43033623)

" The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers"

Ya. Cause you charge too damn much for it. You priced it out of reach of most people. It's not that there isn't demand for it.

Not at the prices they're charging (3, Insightful)

TrekkieGod (627867) | about a year ago | (#43033627)

There are two factors involved in a customer's decision. That which they get, and the price at which they get it. What's going on here is that most customers are not willing to shell out $50-$70 for Time Warner's top tiers, as the extra speed doesn't justify the cost over the lower tiers. On the surface, this would seem to back up Time Warner's assertion that customers don't want faster speeds for the most part. The analysis is missing one important factor, however: Time Warner has no real competition in most markets. As a result, they get to set the prices to dictate customer demand, not the other way around. To maximize their profit, Time Warner has chosen a price point at which most people will want to purchase the tier they're willing to provide minimizing the amount of investment in their infrastructure they would have to provide to support more people at higher tiers.

In a more competitive environment, other ISPs would compete by offering lower prices and faster tiers. Then we would see whether customers chose to pay less for the same speeds or get a faster internet for the same price.

Re:Not at the prices they're charging (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033873)

Ever thought about why there is no competition?

It's because the big corporations strike a deal with the local government to get their infrastructure in at a cheaper price, and then in turn give a cut of their "profits" back to the city/county. That way they have a de facto monopoly since they own the infrastructure, got it at in at a discount, and no competitor can come in and try to match prices without taking a huge hit in the wallet. They are really a lot like any local utility provider, there's no competition because they own all the hardware to every house. Unlike a utility provider, they aren't under as strict of regulation to limit the gouging of customers.

Ever wonder what that local surcharge/fee is on your bill? That's the money you are sending your government via your provider.

No competition = slow speeds (4, Informative)

sjbe (173966) | about a year ago | (#43033631)

"We just don't see the need of delivering that to consumers."' The article goes on to quote her: '...residential customers have thus far shown little interest in TWC's top internet tiers. "A very small fraction of our customer base" ultimately choose those options.'"

Translation: "We have a near monopoly and don't want to spend the money to do the upgrade because we don't have to"

I pay for 50Mb/s access and my ISP offers 100Mb/s. Why don't I pick 100Mb/s? Because it costs $200/month versus the $80/month I'm already paying. Huge diminishing returns. The expensive bit is running the cable to my house. After any arguments against offering the fastest possible speed for a reasonable price are pretty weak.

not like google is doing it either (1)

alen (225700) | about a year ago | (#43033635)

i don't see google committing the $100 or $140 BILLION its estimated to cost to roll out fiber nationwide

when google announces a plan to sell bonds at 7% or whatever the prevailing rate is to build out a nationwide gigabit or higher to the home network call me

because TWC is right. most people don't care to pay more $$$ for the higher speeds. i have time warner 20/1 service for $50 a month. i would like a faster upload but don't want to pay for it. FIOS is coming in a few months to where i like for $70 for 15/5 and i don't plan on switching

Re:not like google is doing it either (2)

Farmer Pete (1350093) | about a year ago | (#43033731)

Apple could foot that bill in cash. Their sitting on more dough than Pillsbury. Maybe we should all write a petition to Apple asking them to create a free fiber network for everyone.

Re:not like google is doing it either (1)

PartyBoy!911 (611650) | about a year ago | (#43033849)

And I pay $40 for 50/50 fibre, I had 100/100 fibre for $60 but tuned it down to save some money.

This is in europe though

Re:not like google is doing it either (1)

PartyBoy!911 (611650) | about a year ago | (#43033879)

And this is without a data cap because even the ISP's here know it's stupid to have a cap on broadband.

Same reasoning will be used for ala carte TV (4, Insightful)

Jason Levine (196982) | about a year ago | (#43033653)

When they price a service out of reach of the average consumer, of course few will take it. The same will be done if they ever offer ala carte TV. You will be given a "cable connection" for a base fee and then each channel will be a certain amount more. Of course, the way it will be priced, you will quickly top the bill for regular, bundled cable TV if you add even a handful of channels. Then, when few people take them up on this "deal", they will declare that there is no demand for it and kill the project.

Pfft. (3, Informative)

Chas (5144) | about a year ago | (#43033655)

Of COURSE they're going to say this.

Invest millions or billions into infrastructure? Why would they want to do something like that when they can just sit back and milk profits on what they have now?

The thing is, there IS a call for this kind of connection. But not when:

A: They want to charge $200 for a 50 megabit connections as-is.
B: They're capping data either way.
C: They're forcing you to pay even MORE by bundling their TV and phone service in. Look at the prices for their bundles. Now try to find the prices for the stand-alone internet.
D: Their customer and technical service is, even at it's most kindly-description, shit-tastic.

With the kind of pricing scheme they have now, they'd want $500-600/month MINIMUM for gig service.

At that kind of price point, yeah. There's no demand. Nobody's stupid enough to pay that.

I would just like to say... (1)

sudden.zero (981475) | about a year ago | (#43033663)

...a huge thanks to Time Warner for blowing up JJ's Restaurant on the Plaza in down town Kansas City, KS. Fuck you ass holes! Next time make sure you don't pick shyster, low dollar contractors, with no digging permits that don't know what they are doing!

Why is this not surprising? (2)

erp_consultant (2614861) | about a year ago | (#43033667)

This is coming from a cable company. Their primary product is television. If ever there was an industry stuck in the dark ages it's television.

"We're in the business of delivering what consumers want..." - That is laughable to say the least. What they are really in the business of is extracting every last dime from consumers that they can get away with. Cable companies are in a semi-monopoly position and the service shows it. As better entertainment options continue to surface, cable cutting continues.

Google is the Steam Engine, Time Warner is the horse and buggy. TW is stubbornly clinging to yesterday's cash cow while Google continues to explore the future.

If I had the option of gigabit internet in my neighborhood I would jump on it in an instant. So would many other people I suspect.

Cable Replacement (5, Insightful)

pellik (193063) | about a year ago | (#43033669)

Of course TWC customers don't need that much bandwidth. Right now the amount of bandwidth they'll give you is generally not enough to stream HD video reliably. This would be a problem for many people, but since their customers all subscribe to cable it clearly doesn't affect them. Streaming 1080p video to multiple devices simultaneously over the internet would kill their core business. Bias is expected.

Value vs Price (1)

Lost2Home (674278) | about a year ago | (#43033687)

I had the option of upgrading to Time Warner's new top tier of 50Gbit download speed and passed. Of course, they wanted an additional $50/month for the upgrade, so roughly a total of $100/month for the service.

At that price it wasn't worth it. If the upgrade were more reasonably priced, I would consider it.

Re:Value vs Price (1)

PartyBoy!911 (611650) | about a year ago | (#43033901)

I guess this shoud be 50Mbit? Otherwise I would take the offer and provide internet to my whole neighbourhood.

Google Fiber (1)

Organic Brain Damage (863655) | about a year ago | (#43033689)

What does Google's 1 gbps service in KC cost? $70 / month? I'd pay that $70 and throw all cable executives' and their offspring to the wolves in about ... well, there I did it while you were reading.

the real reason, seriously (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#43033693)

I'm a residential and business customer of theirs. I have 10x1Mbps at my apartment for around $30/mo. At my business I have 7x0.75Mbps for $69/mo. A business 10x2Mbps is $270. That's why there's no demand for gigabit. It would be like $10,000/mo at their ridiculous prices and I really don't need it at my house.

As a Kansas Citian (5, Interesting)

gameboyhippo (827141) | about a year ago | (#43033695)

As a Kansas Citian, I will say that that she is dead wrong. I already told AT&T that if they can't compete, they won't have me as a customer when Google comes to my area next year. What there isn't a market for is paying $400/month for less than gigabit speeds.

Re:As a Kansas Citian (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033897)

Google fiber added Kansas City to my list of possible future destinations. That says a lot.

Not at $500/month. (1)

concealment (2447304) | about a year ago | (#43033709)

Given their current pricing model, they'd be happy to offer gigabit internet, but not at prices that consumers want to pay. They might offer it for $500 a month, for example, which would fit nicely in with their habit of charging suburban mom and dad $200 a month for internet, cable, two email addresses and a DVR.

All it takes however is one competitor to offer it for under $200 in a city that people recognize the name of, and they'll start changing their tune. Then it's both a proven business model and a threat.

Technically, there's nothing wrong with this. The goal of capitalism is to get paid as much as possible. I don't think this is an argument against capitalism, just that we should probably not have capitalism by itself, but instead rein it in with a cultural or social consensus that "do no evil" is more important than this quarter's earnings.

Re:Not at $500/month. (3, Informative)

radiumsoup (741987) | about a year ago | (#43033863)

well, capitalism without competition isn't actually capitalism, it's more like feudalism, so don't feel bad for knocking the idea of a monopoly around... the concept of cable monopolies is going to have to be reexamined eventually. They did it with the phone companies where you have "last mile" providers and backbone providers - I think eventually cable operators will be relegated to "last mile" status, and you'll be able to push other providers' services down the same pipe over time, just like you can get DSL from multiple providers over the same copper pair. Probably take 5-10 years, though.

(this is admittedly an oversimplification of the situation, but the basic idea is that the monopolies either need to be broken, or coax cable needs to be replaced with something more carrier neutral like utility fiber to the neighborhood.)

She's right (3, Interesting)

Andrio (2580551) | about a year ago | (#43033725)

Who would want gigabit speeds when it just means you'll hit your bandwidth cap sooner; you'll get a six strikes warning; there's a lack of 1080p content to stream because the media companies that own the ISPs (or vice versa) will fight tooth and nail to hold onto old distribution means, etc etc.?

Yup, no point in amazing, fast internet.

Meh. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033735)

As a Comcast subscriber - and let me be neutral, currently, my cap is 'deactivated', though I don't know how long that will last - I am not interested in gigabit Internets so long as shit ISPs continue to offer transfer caps. Busting my cap one day into a month versus halfway through a month makes little difference to me; either way, I'm still skirting the laughable' terms' of service.

the island is not sinking... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033737)

Good bye time warner! you have way over-lived your usefulness as an ISP.

Because it's so logical, obviously. (1)

Zacam (2853607) | about a year ago | (#43033741)

"Well we don't offer it, and no one buys it from us...so there's no demand." Obviously not a Chief Financial Officer that has ever had a course in marketing, because that about sounds like what she is saying.

Granted, they do sort of offer it. Under Business accounts which makes it more expensive than it really should be. And given the "Quality" of service they already don't deliver, I can't imagine why nobody is falling all over themselves to purchase a highly over-priced package.

Anybody can WANT Gig Internet. Lots of people likely WANT it. But there are too few areas where it is even available, not because nobody wants it but because it is not available.

Not surprised that TW isn't taking the plunge on this. In fact, I'm rather glad they're not. I can't imagine that they would do it any better than anything else they do.

Price and usefulness (2)

macwhiz (134202) | about a year ago | (#43033767)

Yes, Time Warner's top-tier 50Mbps is priced beyond the reach of most customers. At $100/month, it's a luxury.

But there's another issue. Right now, the biggest reason to get big bandwidth at home is to support multiple users with diverse interests. There are a lot of potential uses where the upstream bandwidth just isn't there to justify a fatter pipe. Netflix may have a content-delivery network to support higher speeds... but TWC hasn't signed on for it. For most people who work from home, their employer doesn't have enough bandwidth to make a bigger pipe useful. If your employer has only a 45Mbps connection shared by all business needs, you're going to saturate any remaining bandwidth with a 50Mbps connection at home; why would you need gigabit to work from home? In that scenario, 50Mbps is only useful so the kids can Netflix without crimping your VPN speeds... And to get the higher return-path speeds that come with it.

Netflix and its rivals don't come close to using 50Mbps bandwidth per stream. They usually stream closer to 3Mbps. If they offered hire quality streams, or if there was a lot of 4K-resolution content out there, there'd be more demand.

The uses for ultra wideband bandwidth will come, but they're not here yet for most people... And especially not at those prices.

Ever heard of "build it, and they will come"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033777)

This is *not* the entrepreneurial spirit that made America great...

How about driving consumer demand with a few compelling apps, like streaming video & music, really easy to setup, use and cheap, genuinely private web sites, private cloud apps and data...

On no, only Google seems to be to do that, right?

Captcha, 'sadden'; how apposite.

fast, bad service is still bad (1)

dltaylor (7510) | about a year ago | (#43033799)

Why pay their outrageous top-tier prices for it?

DNS servers disappear (1 IP address apart, so no real redundancy when we get one of the frequent outages); commonly cannot connect to regular addresses (like /.); poor security on POP and SMTP; ...

; generated by /sbin/dhclient-script
search socal.rr.com

Maybe if they offered a decent product, and cut back on the excessive cost of cable and Internet, I'd be more likely to get a faster service.

Re:fast, bad service is still bad (1)

Aaden42 (198257) | about a year ago | (#43033905)

If DNS is your only gripe (hard to believe, as this is Time Warner we're talking about), just use another DNS server. Google, OpenDNS, or fire up a copy of djbdns somewhere, and forget that Time Warner's crappy servers even exist. Set your router to serve it out to your internal network, and you're done.

because of the pricing (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#43033813)

These idiots charge outrageous prices then are surprised when few folks select those plans?

It is almost like they want to slow down progress of residential broadband speeds to save themselves upgrade costs. That can't possibly be it can it?

We Dont want it? Who is we? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033829)

The truth is that the carriers cant deliver it. Currently, my Carrier (optimized outfit out of Long Island), seems to be choking on the delivery of TV. Or ... thats why they were deploying Switched Digital Video? For any transaction over the interweb, there is always some link that limits the connection. Whether its the disk serving the content, the uplink from Co-Lo site to the Link to the home to the Wireless hop to the viewers laptop... Its usually been the Link-to-Home. That provides much certainty. Do ISP's want to take that out? Optimized company wants to charge extra for an upgraded link speed. Going to Gigabit seems disruptive to them. I WANT Gigabit!

Typical Business BS (1)

OriginHacker (849894) | about a year ago | (#43033843)

This is almost a slap in the face to the consumer. If Time Warner is anything like Charter Cable - it's no wonder people don't pay for the highest tier..... $200 installation/activation fee then $130/mo for 100mbps down. On top of that, in the last few months months the only other tier 30mbps has increased in cost from $30/mo to $50/mo. Last month we got a letter in the mail from Charter saying: "We're increasing your bill another $5/mo, thanks for being a customer!" I'd have Verizon FIOS if I could.

Maybe because you won't deliver it anyway (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033865)

Remember that the 5Mbps I pay you $40/mo for is "up to" 5Mbps. And my neighborhood is so congested I'm usually lucky to get 200Kbps. I can't remember *ever* hitting my 5Mbps limit. Maybe once, on a Tuesday at 10:30AM.

If I pay you $200/mo for "up to" 50Mbps, why should I expect to get more than 200Kbps anyway? That's still "up to" 50Mbps. It's not like you're going to tear up the streets and upgrade your infrastructure here just to deliver more bandwidth to my house.

Of course I haven't upgraded -- the risk/reward ratio isn't there.

Got your customer demand right here (1)

Aaden42 (198257) | about a year ago | (#43033877)

I am a Time Warner customer (not by choice). I hereby demand gigabit Internet at prices competitive with Google's fiber networks and those of the rest of the developed world.

Record (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year ago | (#43033885)

Based on TW's record, this is sort of like GM saying "There's no consumer demand for 500mpg cars" or Intel saying "There's no consumer demand for 50GHz 512-core processors". There may be no apparent demand because Time Warner still can't pull off 10mbps with any reliability.

Of course people dont show interest.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033889)

Their prices for bandwidth at that level are insane. Bring GB speed price down to a reasonable price and you will see the demand.

no innovation without server hosting allowed (5, Interesting)

jdogalt (961241) | about a year ago | (#43033891)

I recently (last year) filed a complaint (ref#12-C000422224-1) with the FCC about Google Fiber's "no server hosting allowed of any kind" terms of service. With those kinds of EVIL ToS, you just won't see the kind of innovation and utilization of gigabit fiber service that is possible and that would cause a great increase in demand. Somehow, even though I got the local vocal U.S. Navy Information Warefare Officer who posts here (Dave Shroeder) to publicly call my 53 page anti-google manifesto 'good' and agree with it's core network neutrality argument, I have been pretty much completely ignored by both Google and the FCC. Hell, there was even an AC leak from a google all hands meeting that said Google's CEO was "really annoyed with the no server hosting clause" and "repeatedly needled" the CFO about it, who said there was "no intent to enforce, except against crazy datacenter style abuse". Personally I think that's all bullshit part of a conspiracy to deny residental citizen's the ability to compete with google and other established player's servers and services... Finally a couple weeks ago on valentine's day, 2 days after pinging the FCC again, and 1 day after being pinged by another asshole google recruiter (williamwest@google.com), the FCC finally escalated my complaint. Time will tell...

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3106555&cid=41288357 [slashdot.org]
http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3156485&cid=41530745 [slashdot.org]
http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3156485&cid=41516877 [slashdot.org]
http://cloudsession.com/dawg/downloads/misc/kag-draft-2k121007.pdf [cloudsession.com]

of course they don't want it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033895)

When you spy on what they download.

When you charge far too much for it.

When you don't offer it but in a few select areas.

When you force them to also get your shitty tv and phone package to get it.

When your customers hate your guts...

For a big business they sure are stupid as hell. You'd think they could HIRE someone with a clue.

Television Co. Undermines Superior Technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033911)

Time Warner is a television company, not an internet company. It protects its exclusive, government-protected franchise with favoritism toward proganda channels, exclusive and collusive deals with content makers, and with the help of financial markets, by splitting the television industry with the leftovers from the telecom industry, who also have persistently obstructed competition.

They called me almost a year ago (1)

strikethree (811449) | about a year ago | (#43033917)

They called me almost a year ago and asked me if I wanted 40mbit cable and they would offer it for the introductory rate of $120/month for 6 months (IIRC). I said no. I _would_ pay an arm and leg for more bandwidth, but not from Comcast. I am in the process of cancelling my current account now just because of their new copyright system. I would have been contractually obligated to stay if I had accepted their offer of more bandwidth.

Sort of makes sense (2)

fa2k (881632) | about a year ago | (#43033929)

From what I've seen, most people use wireless connections for their computers (even some desktops..ugh), tablets, etc. Best case scenario is that the games console is wired, if they are gamers. The max speed of wireless "n" gear is easily below gigabit, and the bandwidth is shared between all users. The fact that people don't *quite* need gigabit yet shouldn't put these ISPs off upgrading their services. Gigabit is maybe overkill for now, but in a couple of years it will be the standard at the high end. They should be working their asses off upgrading the hardware in residential areas to anticipate this. Speccing the home routers for at least 300Mbit of WAN I/O. Instead they are hoping that things will not improve. If all ISPs don't do anything, then it will indeed not improve. It's good that we have Google, which will do something, and will show the ISPs what happens if they don't all play retarded. I.e. all other ISPs will look like retards (sorry about the choice of words, but I can't think of a better way to say it)

Well, true enough. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033947)

If you have a 10GB/month limit and pay $30/Gig over that limit, then you won't want gigabit to the home since that merely means you can run up a big bill even quicker.

I worked for a major MSO (cable operator) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43033989)

I was above director level, in the engineering group. The executives above me flat out told me they could not compete with Fios and they saw google as a fad. They didnt believe in cord cutters despite data showing anyone under 25 purchased the highest speed internet they could afford and thats it - no bundle, no tv. They really believed by the time they hit a certain age, they would start buying the bundle...

Netflix was more than 60% of our backbone traffic (and steadily growing) during peak hours. There was a real sense of panic, a fear of the "rise of the others" - the other streaming providers such as amazon bringing in just enough traffic to crush the network. It was an open secret that the network couldn't sustain the explosion of traffic, especially video (which competed with our core product - tv). In relation to the revenue generated, there was not a significant investment being made to offer a competitive solution and like I said, they just admitted internally they couldn't compete.

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