Local News

Time Warner Customers Face Waiting List For HDTV Converters

Posted January 17, 2007 11:03 p.m. EST
Updated January 17, 2007 11:30 p.m. EST

An estimated 300 cable customers in the Triangle have HDTV sets, but can’t watch high-definition programming. For the second year in a row, Time Warner Cable has run out of converter boxes because of high holiday demand.

"I can't count how many I've sold. There's been so many, you can't keep up with them," said Justin Summers, a salesperson at Garner TV and Appliances.

The store has been selling HDTV sets like crazy. "You can't get enough of a great picture," said Summers.

Cable customers need a converter box to fully enjoy the high-definition programming. Right now, Time Warner officials said the company doesn't have enough to go around.

"We have short wait-list for customers who want one, and we are trying our best to fill that demand as best we can," said Brad Phillips, vice president of public affairs for Time Warner Cable.

Time Warner officials said they couldn’t have anticipated the increased demand for HDTVs. They said requests for boxes have increased more than 100 percent over last year.

"It's not unusual for us to get a request for 250 to 300 per day," Phillips said.

Time Warner is working with Scientific Data, the company that makes the converter boxes, to get them to Raleigh as quickly as possible, officials said. They hope to fill all requests within the next three to four weeks.

At Garner TV and Appliances, Summers said they've received a few complaints from customers who buy HDTVs but can't see HD signals, but it hasn't hurt sales.