Some Holly Springs Residents Choose Smaller Cable Provider
Posted February 10, 1999 6:00 a.m. EST
HOLLY SPRINGS — When it comes to cable TV, many people have only one service provider to choose from. With no competition, consumers have little say in the size of their bills.
InCary, many people want to get some competition forTime Warner Cable. But in one Holly Springs subdivision, the residents already have a choice.
There is competition between two cable companies, and in this case, Time Warner's competition is winning.
The nerve center of the number one cable TV service in Sunset Ridge, a 750 home golf community in Holly Springs, is not very big.
"I've been really happy with the service," said cable customer Lisa Rodriguez
Ever since she moved there five years ago, Rodriguez and her family have had Deacon Cable even though they are in the unique position of having two providers to choose from, Deacon and Time Warner.
"There have been a couple of times I've looked into switching, but the other cable company was always more expensive," explained Rodriguez.
About $10 a month more expensive for roughly the same standard cable package. So even in a neighborhood where the people could afford the higher priced service, no-frills Deacon Cable is the market leader.
"I'm sure we have at least 85 percent of the customers that have the choice of either us or Time Warner," said Allen Owen, Deacon Cable owner.
Owen explains he saw an opportunity early on when Holly Springs was growing and Time Warner's predecessor chose not to serve the new subdivision. Time Warner eventually followed.
"It is difficult for two operators to compete and both make a living in the same area," Owen said.
Rodriguez says it sures benefits the neighborhood.
"It's nice that we do have a choice," Rodriguez said.
This is a very unique situation where Deacon Cable was able to come and just serve the one subdivision. In many cases, the town requires a second company that wants to come in to lay cable in the whole municipality.
Cable rates are growing faster than inflation. According toCable World, back in 1982, basic cable was less than $8.50 . In ten years, the rate more than doubled, and it has seen another huge increase since then.
Over the past year, cable prices have outpaced inflation by about six percent.