Federal regulators announced Monday they have approved Charter Communications’ purchase of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks. The approval includes restrictions barring the combined company from entering deals with programmers that would keep shows and movies off streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.
Here is an overview of changes Western New Yorkers can expect:
• Consumers who currently purchase faster broadband service from Time Warner, with speeds of 30 megabits per second and 50 Mbps, are expected to receive bigger savings.
• Charter must allow existing Time Warner customers to keep their current bundled or standalone service “without material changes” for three years from the time that the merger is completed.
• Charter must offer standalone broadband service and high-speed Internet service to low-income customers at a price of no more than $14.99 per month, with download speeds of at least 30 Mbps.
• Charter has agreed to offer broadband service with download speeds of 30 Mbps and upload speeds of 4 Mbps for $14.99 a month, including installation fees and a cable modem. That program would be open to families who qualify for reduced-price school lunches as well as senior citizens receiving supplemental Social Security benefits.
Time Warner has about 365,000 residential and commercial customers in Western New York for its cable television, phone and Internet services.