Spec­trum sub­scribers have un­til May 31 to or­der re­bate for slow in­ter­net speeds

Some qual­ify to re­ceive a free ca­ble chan­nel

The Buffalo News - - BUSINESS - By Sa­man­tha Christ­mann

If you were one of the hun­dreds of thou­sands of Spec­trum sub­scribers who re­ceived slower in­ter­net speeds than you were promised, and qual­ify for a free ca­ble chan­nel be­cause of it, you’ve got un­til May 31 to or­der it.

Af­fected cus­tomers are be­ing no­ti­fied in their March bills whether they are el­i­gi­ble to choose three free months of HBO or six free months of Show­time. To or­der it, they must call 833-422-8795 by the dead­line. Those who re­ceive the free ca­ble chan­nel will not have to take ac­tion to re­move it when the free months ex­pire.

Some cus­tomers also qual­ify for re­bates of $75 or $150 dol­lars, which have started show­ing up on cus­tomers’ March state­ments. The re­bates are only avail­able to cur­rent cus­tomers who do not have past-due bills with the com­pany.

Legacy sub­scribers to Time Warner Ca­ble in­ter­net plans with speeds of 100 Mbps or higher are el­i­gi­ble for the $75 re­fund. They are el­i­gi­ble for an­other $75 if they had de­fi­cient modems pro­vided by the com­pany for two years or longer. Those cus­tomers don’t have to do any­thing to re­ceive their re­bates.

It’s part of a record set­tle­ment se­cured by the state At­tor­ney Gen­eral’s Of­fice, which says Spec­trum failed to de­liver on the “blaz­ing fast” in­ter­net speeds it ad­ver­tised. In­stead, they re­ceived speeds 80 per­cent lower than promised, be­cause of de­fi­cient modems, ac­cord­ing to the law­suit.

In all, cus­tomers are ex­pected to re­ceive $62.5 mil­lion in re­funds and $100 mil­lion in stream­ing ser­vices and pre­mium ca­ble chan­nels.

Spec­trum, a brand of Char­ter Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, said the prob­lem stems from Time Warner Ca­ble prac­tices, which Char­ter bought in 2016.

This lat­est de­vel­op­ment is not as­so­ci­ated with the Pub­lic Ser­vice Com­mis­sion or­der­ing Spec­trum to va­cate the state. The com­mis­sion has been in set­tle­ment talks with the com­pany and re­peat­edly ex­tended Spec­trum’s dead­line. The two sides have said they are close to an agree­ment.

At is­sue there is Spec­trum’s fail­ure to meet Pub­lic Ser­vice Com­mis­sion dead­lines in build­ing out its broad­band ca­ble net­work to ru­ral ar­eas in New York.

John Hickey/Buf­falo News

The Pub­lic Ser­vice Com­mis­sion has told Spec­trum to leave New York.

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