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Legend
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Don't know if other companies are doing this as well, but our local Cable System, Bresnan, has an ad for free HD. They only have like 15 or so channels, but it is an interesting way to compete. I am sure they are not the only ones looking into this. I could think of some more services I would order if I had an extra $10/month.
 

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Godfather
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Time Warner is advertising the same thing. I think you answered your own question though. The HD fee will probably be dropped when it is standard for most cable companies to have comparable lineups with Directv instead of just 15 HD channels.
 

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No component of any sold product is ever really "free", instead it is merely "included"

I personally prefer half price to "buy one, get one free"

But...psychologically, on an unconscious level...

people prefer to "get one free"

...even if they only want one!
 

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computersecguy said:
Don't know if other companies are doing this as well, but our local Cable System, Bresnan, has an ad for free HD. They only have like 15 or so channels, but it is an interesting way to compete. I am sure they are not the only ones looking into this. I could think of some more services I would order if I had an extra $10/month.
It's all about "packaging".

DirecTV could raise their base rate tomorrow and "include free HD" as well.

What you actually need to do is compare apples to apples.

If you look at the actual base packages, as well as what HD channels (and the number of them) included in the services you want....determine the total costs and see what you get for the $$$.

For some people 15 HD channels will be sufficient, especially if they are "the right ones" that they prefer.

For many of us others...the more the merrier. My wife cannot even look at an SD channel anymore - she's now very much of the mode that if its not in HD, she's not watching it (nor will I). It's tough to go back to SD once you're used to HD.

In any case, the only true comparison (forget how they are labled or "bundled" - that's just marketing hype).....is to check out what you get for how much $$$.
 

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RIP
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HD will be included in the base packages when the models they use say that the total revenue from SD customers will increase despite some SD-only folks leaving because of the rate increase.
 

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Legend
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Local cable company says free HD but its only the locals OTR's that are free plus they charge extra for the HD box so whats free and whats not? Extra fee for HD channels like History, SciFi, ESPN, TNT etc.
 

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Legend
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Argee said:
Local cable company says free HD but its only the locals OTR's that are free plus they charge extra for the HD box so whats free and whats not? Extra fee for HD channels like History, SciFi, ESPN, TNT etc.
Comcast and Cox (at least in Connecticut) give you the HD version of whatever's included in your standard package (if an HD version is available) and does not charge extra. For example if you just subscribe to expanded basic but have an HD receive, you'll get channels like TNT HD, TBS HD, ESPN HD, CNN HD, and so on, and your regional sports networks, but you won't get channels like Science HD or National Geographic HD, since they are included in a higher tier (digital basic I believe). HD only channels like MHD, HD Theater, and MOJO are included free no matter what you sub to.

Eventually this will be the way DirecTV does it, but probably not for a good long while.
 

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Hall Of Fame
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Cablevision in NY gives you free HD and a decent amount. There packages are about on par with Directv, maybe even a little cheaper
 

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Show me a cable company that does not charge extra for HD programming, and they also don't charge extra for an HD receiver. If you can find that, then that company is truly offering free HD. If they charge extra for the receiver, then it's not free, and they're just moving the charge to a different part of the bill.
 

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bobshults said:
Many cable companies advertise "free hd" but they then charge you a an additional monthly fee (about $10) for an HD capable set top box. So, programming is free but hardware is not.
Exactly, in the town near me, the cable company charges $15/mo per HD cable box!

Not to mention they charge $15/mo for their HD package that includes about 12 channels :nono2:
 

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The only "Free HD" I have seen fits into 2 categories:

1) Promo offers (for a limited # of months), and
2) Misleading packaging, whereby the cost is buried in the base cable fees

Nothing is "free"...first lesson learned starting in the delivery room and everying thereafter. :D
 

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Godfather
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hdtvfan0001 said:
The only "Free HD" I have seen fits into 2 categories:

1) Promo offers (for a limited # of months), and
2) Misleading packaging, whereby the cost is buried in the base cable fees

Nothing is "free"...first lesson learned starting in the delivery room and everying thereafter. :D
You could add a third category.
Local TV stations send out their HD signal OTA. So in theory they are sending out their HD signal free of charge. It is up to you to purchase an antenna and unit capable of receiving those signals. :)
 

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Godfather
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computersecguy said:
Don't know if other companies are doing this as well, but our local Cable System, Bresnan, has an ad for free HD. They only have like 15 or so channels, but it is an interesting way to compete. I am sure they are not the only ones looking into this. I could think of some more services I would order if I had an extra $10/month.
I could think of some more services I would order if I had an extra $10/month.
What do you mean if I had an extra $10/month? is their package $10 more than the other cable companies in your area?
 

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RandCfilm said:
You could add a third category.
Local TV stations send out their HD signal OTA. So in theory they are sending out their HD signal free of charge. It is up to you to purchase an antenna and unit capable of receiving those signals. :)
True...but the antenna, cable, time to install, a potential external digital receiver, and/or TV are not free either... :D
 

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Godfather
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hdtvfan0001 said:
True...but the antenna, cable, time to install, a potential external digital receiver, and/or TV are not free either... :D
Can't use the cost of the TV as a factor if you plan on watching the TV in the first place. :D Antenna, cable, installation... I would consider as start up costs to be able to view the wonderful world of HD. :)
 

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Godfather
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Grentz said:
Also beware of some cable companies that say they have free HD and in reality it is just the OTA HD channels in the area feed through the cable system...
Yes. And when the customer calls for the channel line-up for the OTA channel mapping they are told they should get a digital cable box - which means digital tier charge plus cable box charge, plus HD charge... you know the game. Your basic bait and switch. The ads for "free" HD by local cable companies fall into one category - advertising LIES.

What I like is how they don't even program the channel number information from the OTA into their rebroadcast so it will display properly. So depending on the manufacturer of your TV a channel might show up as xxx-y or xxx.y or just xxx if the y = 1 and there are no other subchannels. I started mapping out the difference in how they showed up in Time Warner here on Sony, Sharp, Vizio, Panasonic, etc. They even varied within a brand sometimes! So after that "basic" cable suscriber with their "free" HD gets frustrated trying to figure out what channel to tune for their OTA channels on the cable or the first time they call for help they are told they need a cable box - with a guide, and channel mappings.
 

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AllStar
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Although things are not progressing as fast as some of us would like, it won't be too many years before every channel will be HD. When HD is approaching the norm they will no longer be able to charge separately for it. I predict 5 years.
 
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