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November 9, 2015

TV Providers

Charter Communications Review

As a smaller cable TV provider generally available in rural areas, Charter Communications may have less extensive channel offerings, but you can get service without signing a contract.

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The Good

No contracts required

Charter Communications does not require a contract of any length for Charter TV®, which is perfect if you're looking to stay away from the multi-year contracts required by most other TV providers. Charter cable charges one month ahead on an ongoing basis so you will always know what price you're agreeing to beforehand, but know that without the security of a contract, they are able to give sporadic rate hikes. Charter is a great option if you don't want to make any long-term commitments or if you are living in their service area for a short amount of time.

Decent channel variety

Charter provides a good number and variety of channels including up to 250 digital channels, 140 HD channels, and about 10,000 On Demand choices with HD and 3D movies. You can subscribe to Charter cable on up to four TVs in your home, which can be ideal for families with multiple tastes. Charter's channel lineup has a full variety of sports and movie channels, and also has a few Spanish language channels. Parental controls and pay-per-view purchase controls are additional features that come standard with Charter service.

Bundling options available

Charter Communications gives you the option to combine cable TV service with phone, Internet, or a combination of all three. Charter not only offers a great selection of cable TV channels, but they also provide fast Internet and unlimited phone calling plans. Bundling services together from Charter can streamline billing and in-home service and installation. If you plan on needing phone or Internet service in addition to cable TV, bundling is a great value and a sure way to save time, money, and hassle.

The Bad

Poor customer service

The customer service and support at Charter Communications has repeatedly been noted to be lacking. Charter TV® is available in 25 states, but mostly in rural areas where they are the only cable TV option for area customers. Year after year Charter Communications has been ranked on the American Customer Satisfaction Index as one of the companies with the worst customer service. Additionally, Charter doesn't have an online forum, which leaves customers without a platform to share knowledge or collectively troubleshoot. They do have walk-in locations which can be helpful if you'd prefer to work things out face-to-face with staff.

Lacking technology

Charter Communications doesn't offer the most outstanding DVR receiver or mobile app technology. With the Charter DVR receiver you can't record more than two shows simultaneously, and you can store up to a meager 51 hours of SD programming. The mobile app is also underwhelming since it doesn't let you stream live TV, watch your recordings, or remotely manage your DVR or parental control settings. However, the Charter iPhone and Android apps let you do the basics like view TV listings, browse FAQs, access bill pay, and even get reminders for premiere showings in your own favorite categories.

Rates run high

The monthly rates for TV subscription run rather high with Charter TV®, especially considering that the entry level, or lowest price plan, is $59.99 per month. This is higher than average for cable providers, but Charter's prices may seem fair if you consider the fact that they do not require a contract at all. If you are planning to stay with a TV company for a long time and want to lock-in a better price that typically comes with long-term commitment, then you may want to consider another TV provider.

The Details

Provider Specs

  • 3D Channels: None
  • Available Channels: 200+
  • HD Channels: 140+
  • Monthly Price: $59 - $99
  • Number of Packages: 3
  • Service Area: West, Southeast, Midwest, Northeast
  • States Available: 25
  • Type: Cable

Receiver Specs

  • Channels Simultaneously Recorded: 2
  • Hours of HD Recording: 11
  • Hours of SD Recording: 51
  • Receiver Options: 4
  • Recording Capabilities (hours): Up to 780
  • Storage Capacity: 320GB - 500GB


Charter Select

  • Total Channels: 125+
  • Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Length of Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Standard Rate: $59.99/month

Charter TV Silver

  • Total Channels: 175+
  • Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Length of Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Standard Rate: $79.99/month

Charter TV Gold

  • Total Channels: 200+
  • Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Length of Introductory Rate: N/A
  • Standard Rate: $99.99/month

* Package details and pricing may vary according to location.

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