May 11, 2009
5:50 PM -- Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) launched its "Optimum Online Ultra" tier across the board today, offering a Docsis 3.0 tier that, at least in the U.S., sets the downstream bar at 101 Mbit/s. (See Cablevision Debuts 101-Mbit/s Wideband Service.)
Cablevision is selling it for $99.95 per month, but consumers in the MSO's footprint were quick to point out that those who intend to sign up for those lofty speeds had better get ready to spend a few dollars more to get hooked up.
A glance at the details Cablevision has posted on its Website confirms that a "one time professional installation fee of $34.95 and $300 activation fee applies."
MSO engineers have recently noted that Docsis 3.0 modems cost about twice as much as their widely deployed 2.0 predecessors, so kicking in a beefy fee is certainly one way to get customers to help pay the freight. (See Bresnan's 'Insurance Policy' .)
Cablevision execs have recently held that it doesn't expect the new Docsis 3.0 tier to move the revenue needle much in the early going, and that the service will likely be of most interest to business service customers. At the same time, tacking a $300 activation fee on top of the regular monthly nut is sure to keep the service thinly provisioned in the early stages of the product's availability.
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News
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