A couple of years ago we got a message from the cable company that the package we subscribe to was no longer being offered, but we were 'grandfathered' in. In other words, we can keep the package we've got so long as we don't make any changes to it. Unfortunately, they didn't guarantee that they wouldn't make any changes from their end! Last month we got a letter informing us that BBC America would be being moved from the 'Digital Preferred' level of service to 'Digital Starter'. Of course I have no idea what channels are included with which packages so I had to look it up.
The way the packages are listed, it looks as though they are listed in order of expense:
- Limited Basic (that's the super cheap package we had for years - it's still only $7.28/month for 30 channels, though you won't find it listed on the cable company's website of course!)
- Expanded Basic (48 channels)
- Digital Economy (35 channels)
- Digital Starter (64 channels)
- Digital Preferred (90 channels)
- Digital Premium (46 channels - HBO, Starz, Cinema and the like)
On looking closely at the list, I discovered that the Expanded Basic channels are, for the most part, the same ones you get with Digital Starter except they are not digital. So Expanded Basic+Digital Starter is not 48+64, but more like 7+64. To switch from the package we have to the one that has BBC America will mean going from 120 channels (124 of which I rarely if ever watch) to 101 channels (96 of which I will rarely if ever watch). I will lose Nat. Geo., BBCWorld, and a couple of other channels I like to watch occasionally, but I'll gain some other channels that don't currently have that I'm sure will prove entertaining from time to time. So why I am still wittering on about this as though it's a huge issue? It's because the only change that the cable company has made that has even made me think about changing my subscription is to move BBC America to another tier. Had they moved almost any other channel I couldn't have cared less. And if there was no change in cost, or even a savings, I wouldn't be wittering, but there is a change in cost.
My current bill (including internet service) is just over $75/month. I know plenty of people who choose to pay more, but I don't. If I switch packages just to keep BBC America my monthly subscription will change to $120. That's a HUGE percentage increase. Is Graham Norton really worth $45/month?