Time Warner's Cable Modem Fiasco

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - I'm thinking that this could turn out to be a giant nightmare for Time Warner Cable ( TWC) high-speed Internet customers.

Last week the company informed its Internet service subscribers, via post cards, that it would begin charging $4 a month for company-provided cable modems which had previously been free. Or, customers could buy their own new cable modems for $100 to $150. Time Warner warned that it would begin charging the new fee on Oct. 15.

So, I got one of the Motorola modems on the list. It arrived yesterday but I had to wait until this afternoon to install it when no one was using an Internet connection. I followed the instructions on Time Warner's Web site. Unplug the old modem. Install the new modem. Then I called Time Warner's Customer Support phone line to register the new hardware. That last step is where the fun began.

First up: dealing with the automated operator. After 5 interactive minutes I was transferred to Lina (that's what it sounded like when she spoke into her headset). She's one of Time Warner's national advisers. I told her exactly what I wanted to do. She listened attentively and took down a lot of information. She then gave me a "case number" and told me to hold on to speak with someone on the Time Warner Provisioning Team.

After a minute or so I was speaking with Monica, who called herself a Customer Service agent. She began asking me to repeat all my information again, but I insisted that she could find all of that by searching the case number from Lina. After a minute or two (we all had to wait for Lina to exit the file) Monica had all the info she needed and began typing in a new computer file.

In a minute or so she was done. She gave me a confirmation number (different from the case number) and told me that I'll get a return call when they were ready. It turns out it will take as much as three days for a technician to make the change.

If you liked this article you might like

Discovery and Scripps Surge In Premarket Trading Amid Renewed Deal Talk

Netflix's Biggest Bear Warns the Company Is 'Hemorrhaging Cash' and Stock Could Crash 55%

Twitter Beats First-Quarter Earnings Estimate, Sees Active User Growth Increase

Avoid These 4 'Over-Owned' Stocks

AT&T and Time Warner Executives Head to Capital to Tout Merger