Cablevision Systems said Friday that it would raise its cable television subscription rates an average of 3.2 percent across all service levels next year starting in January or February, depending on a customer's location.
The Bethpage, N.Y.-based multiple system operator with 3 million subscribers said the average cable bill would probably rise by $1.59 a month, reflecting what Cablevision described as higher programming costs and increased investments in customer service and network improvements to enhance reliability.
The rate hike by Cablevision, comes at a time when competition from satellite TV companies has made it difficult for cable TV operators to hang on to all their subscribers, let alone add new ones as they did for many years.
"Eventually you run into price resistance," said Mark Cooper, research director for the Consumer Federation of America, based in Washington, D.C. "That doesn't mean it's a fair price."
For the standard level of cable TV service, which Cablevision calls Family Cable and which includes such channels as CNN, TNT, MTV, Nickelodeon and ESPN, the average monthly rate will increase 3.53 percent, from $42.80 to $44.31, Cablevision said. The....