Help me out readers. I know many of you — especially anonymous commenters – like to bad mouth your TV service.
Then I hear excuses like, “I didn’t want to have to change my email addresses” and “I know there is satellite for TV but I don’t really want that” and even “I’m chicken to change from TWC because of the Great Unkown[sic]” — the latter two excuses were e-mailed to me.
And I’ve heard from companies like Verizon’s FiOS, which has had a difficult time attracting customers. It blames the local cable TV provider, which perks up its ears when FiOS enters town and blasts existing customers with better deals. Consumers seem to really have no loyalty when it comes to TV service.
Take the poll and see the results:
What keeps you from switching to a new TV provider? (Feel free to add your own answer)
In Orange County, we have options. AT&T U-verse and Verizon FiOS are two Internet-based TV services available in some parts of the county. DirecTV and Dish Network are satellite TV services available to nearly everyone. There are also the free broadcast-channels only TV if you have a good antenna and a smattering of TV shows available online for those who have hooked up a computer or other device to their TV. And, of course, there is Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications for cable service.
Ben Piper, the analyst who reported that 68 percent of cable TV customers would ditch their service for a 20 percent discount, said that for many consumers, it’s just a “pain in the neck” to switch.
“The perceived ‘pain in the neck’ (or whatever other part of the body) factor is sufficient to keep some from ever getting rid of their existing service. Customers dread having to make the call, schedule new installation, return the set top box, etc. We view this as a huge opportunity for competitive service providers to swoop in. Those that can eliminate (or at least mitigate) the inconvenience and make the transition as ‘seamless’ as possible will be winners,” Piper said.
Add to that some technical issues — Verizon FiOS, AT&T U-verse is unavailable in the neighborhood; condo and apartment associations limit where one can install a satellite dish or antenna — and toss in the plethora of confusing offers from TV services and we’re back to, well, complaining about TV service and doing nothing about it.
So, if you’re unhappy with your TV service, tell me why and tell me what you have. I’ll be using your responses to help shape future stories about TV prices and options for consumers.
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