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New FCC regulation might raise cable rates even higher

Matt Burns

Frustrated about your high cable bill? Well then, we're sorry to start the week off like this. Come July 1st, you might see a higher cable bill if you have a new cable box installed when a federal rule goes into effect. Security is the buzzword here and any set-top-box that is deployed after July 1st must have a CableCARD installed. Plus, the FCC is looking to create a retail market for set-top Cable CARD equipped boxes and requiring a CableCARD levels the playing field a bit. (Example: Samsung SMT-H3050) So not only will the boxes cost more to lease, 'cause of all this new security, but then cable companies can tack on an extra cost for the CableCARD. How much more are we talking? A bias and more than likely high-cost estimate rings in from a TiVo spokesmen at around $20 per new box deployed. Only time will tell if prices will in fact go up, but everyone knows that when at all possible, cable companies do raise rates.

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