It has almost become a rite of the new year: Comcast and AT&T are once again increasing prices for its cable TV and internet services.
The increases, which take effect on Jan. 1, 2021, includes hikes for TV, internet and equipment rental. Comcast joins AT&T, which reported earlier that it would raise its TV rates, in what has become an annual, unwelcome end-of-year tradition.
Comcast increases range from $2.50 a month for TV box rentals to $30 hikes for installation or service visits by technicians. Most internet services will increase by $3 a month. Choice TV will go up by $5 a month, and Choice TV with a TV box goes up by $7.50.
NOWHERE TO RUN: Cable, streaming TV prices going up
Comcast is also increasing its Broadcast TV fee, which goes toward providing over-the-air TV channels, and that increase varies by market up to $4.50 a month, according to a Comcast spokesperson.
One fee, for providing service to an additional TV, is decreasing by $2.45.
Customers who have contracts for promotional prices won’t see the changes until those agreements expire.
The price hikes were first posted to Reddit by member in Chicago. Comcast confirmed to the website Ars Technica that the increases apply nationwide.
A Comcast spokesperson provided the following statement about the increases:
“Rising programming costs – most notably for broadcast TV and sports – continue to be the biggest factors driving price increases for all content distributors and their customers, not just Comcast. We’re continuing to work hard to manage these costs for our customers while investing in our network to provide the best, most reliable broadband service in the country and the flexibility to choose our industry-leading video platform with X1 or the highest quality streaming product with Flex, the only free streaming TV device with voice remote that’s included with broadband service.”
AT&T announced its hikes earlier this month, which apply only to its DirecTV and U-verse television services starting Jan. 17, 2021. But AT&T also is cutting prices on many of its TV packages. It also attributed many of the increases to programming costs.
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AT&T’s price hikes range from $1 a month to $9 a month depending on the service tier. Many of the price cuts are, and quite a few bundles with sports packages have price cuts. In addition, there are $3 decreases for Showtime, Starz and Cinemax.
AT&T is also adding a monthly, 19-cent Federal Cost Recovery Act fee, which used to be charged annually.
AT&T increased its TV prices in July, with hikes for its cable, satellite and streaming services. In general, prices for streaming and traditional TV services have gone up dramatically in 2020, with providers blaming it on the increasing cost of content.
Both companies announced price hikes about this time last year.