For Massachusetts Town, 2 Bad Choices for Entertainment Video Service?

There is some irony in a recent city council vote to reject transfer of a cable TV franchise from
Charter Communications to Comcast. For starters, the council vote is not binding. Second, the rejection itself is only to allow two more weeks for Comcast to address council concerns.

The irony is that, on the most-recent rankings of customer satisfaction by the American Customer Satisfaction Index, a national cross-industry measure of customer satisfaction in the United States, Charter and Comcast have identical scores of 60 on the ACSI consumer satisfaction index. Only Time Warner Cable, with a score of 56, ranks lower.

Among the various industries tracked by the ACSI, only the Internet service provider industry has worse overall scores. Video subscription service ranks next to last out of all industries monitored by ACSI.

“Customer satisfaction is deteriorating for all of the largest pay TV providers,” ACSI has said. To be sure, there are nuances.

Consumers are much more dissatisfied with cable TV service (average score of 60) than fiber optic and satellite service (average score of 68).

Though both companies drop in customer satisfaction, DIRECTV (-4 percent) and AT&T (-3 percent) are tied for the lead with ACSI scores of 69.

Verizon Communications FiOS (68) and DISH Network (67) follow.

DISH Network may be the lowest-scoring satellite TV company, but it is better than the top-scoring cable company, Cox Communications (-3 percent to 63), according to ACSI.

Cable giants Comcast and Time Warner Cable have the most dissatisfied customers. Comcast scores fell five percent to 60, while Time Warner registered the biggest loss and plunged seven percent to 56, its lowest score ever.

Spectrum Futures 2014


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