Why Your TV and Internet Service Seem to Be Getting Worse – The Cheat Sheet

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

Americans pretty universally dislike their television and Internet service providers, an unsurprising fact hammered home once again by the Telecommunications and Information Report 2015. The American Customer Satisfaction Index, the group behind the report, noted on its homepage that “Consumers Love Smartphones, Loathe ISPs.” The pithy line pointed to the headlining finding of the group’s latest study: of the 43 industries on which the survey asks customers’ opinions, companies offering TV and Internet service tied for last place in customer satisfaction.

The study is based on more than 14,000 consumer surveys and rates companies from 0 to 100. In the category of cable TV services, Comcast’s rating dropped by 10 percent over the past year to reach a score of 54. Time Warner dropped by nine points to a 51, finding itself in a tie with Mediacom Communications for the lowest score among the more than 300 companies evaluated. Among companies providing Internet service, Time Warner received a better score than last year, earning a score of 58. It fared better than Comcast at 56 and Charter at 57, but not as well as Verizon FiOS at 68 and AT&T U-Verse at 69.

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Writing for The New York Times, Rebecca Ruiz notes that cable TV and Internet providers have faced harsh scrutiny in a year marked by talks of mergers throughout the industry. Though regulators’ reservations about Comcast’s $45 billion bid for Time Warner Cable put an end to the deal, Charter Communications announced last week that it intends to buy Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks for a total of $67.1 billion.

David VanAmburg, director of the Index, told the Times that “Internet and TV have always been among the lowest scoring. But this year they’re at the very bottom.” He noted that the customer service offered by companies in these industries “has long been bad,” and they don’t handle inquiries with “efficiency and respect.”

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