A young woman is sitting in her kitchen and is loking at her receipts at home while using a smart phone

Spectrum Will Soon Be Charging Extra For Every TV You Use

A young woman is sitting in her kitchen and is loking at her receipts at home while using a smart phoneDo you still have Spectrum TV? Soon you may be paying extra for every TV you want to watch your Spectrum cable TV on.

Recently Spectrum started to contact subscribers in a growing list of markets to let them know that soon they will be switching to digital TV. Spectrum says this “technology is used to protect TV content from unauthorized viewing, which will enable Spectrum to better maintain the integrity of its network and offer more enhanced features.”

What does that mean for Spectrum TV subscribers? In short it means paying more for cable TV. According to the Spectrum website, prices will vary by market. Readers have told us they pay $3.50 to $7.99 a month. Other cable companies such as Comcast charge $5.49 a month for the same device.

How does it work? If you currently just plug the cable TV cord into your TV, you will soon need a new device. This digital adapter box is just a small box that is a lot like Spectrum’s DVR boxes but without the DVR.

Here is how Spectrum shows customers to connect the device.

Now Spectrum is offering one free digital converter box for the first year. After that you will have to start paying for that device. If you have a DVR, the TV with the DVR will not need a converter box.

These digital adapter fees at $3.50 a month can really add up. If you have two TVs in your house that need them you will pay an extra $7 a month. Over a year it will cost you $84. Add in the cost of a DVR, and the bill can start to add up.

So if you have not made the jump to become a cord cutter maybe today is the day you should do just that.

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30 Responses to Spectrum Will Soon Be Charging Extra For Every TV You Use

  1. tommyr July 12, 2017 at 7:11 am #

    This is old news, last years news actually.

    • TARHEELBRAND July 12, 2017 at 7:54 am #


    • Joseph ewing July 12, 2017 at 8:12 am #

      Correct. We just became Spectrum in our area (from Time Warner), and they were pushing those pathetic “digital adapters” over a year ago. They still haven’t gone all digital yet.

  2. HiroRoshi July 12, 2017 at 7:44 am #

    Separately, Charter is charging an extra $6 to their Streaming service, can’t get away from charging more than advertised price….

    • TARHEELBRAND July 12, 2017 at 7:53 am #

      There are taxes on all streaming services!

      • HiroRoshi July 12, 2017 at 8:44 am #

        Mandatory taxes yes but a broadcast fee as well? Anything beyond mandatory taxes should be included in the advertised price.

        • TARHEELBRAND July 12, 2017 at 10:23 am #


  3. James Jarvis July 12, 2017 at 8:10 am #

    does this mean they are charging for each roku or just a digital box?

    • Joseph ewing July 12, 2017 at 8:11 am #

      They will charge for their hardware.

  4. Joseph ewing July 12, 2017 at 8:11 am #

    Spectrum has a Roku app you can use in place of their pathetic “digital adapters”.

    • John Butler July 12, 2017 at 8:52 am #

      What does Spectrum charge for hooking up a Roku app?

      • TARHEELBRAND July 12, 2017 at 10:23 am #


      • Joseph ewing July 13, 2017 at 10:57 am #

        No charge for the app, but you have to be paying for their content. The Roku is a great replacement for their boxes that have a monthly fee.

    • testy65 July 12, 2017 at 10:43 am #

      But you have to have Spectrum cable service. I have Spectrum internet only, installed the app on my Roku and was told that I needed to pay for cable TV to watch the app on my Roku! They say that it “enhances” your experience.

  5. mnsportsgeek July 12, 2017 at 8:37 am #

    This is the kind of practice that drives people to streaming services.

    • Jed Crooks July 13, 2017 at 10:09 am #

      The interesting thing is just use a streaming device to watch spectrum and don’t pay the lease. They have an app that works on Roku

  6. BigO July 12, 2017 at 8:42 am #

    Glad I dumped TWC (Spectrum) a 2.5 years ago for cable.

  7. Ryan Moore July 12, 2017 at 11:15 am #

    Spectrum (Charter) made this switch in my area (and I believe many markets nearby) years ago and is one of the primary reasons I cut the cord. It’s really an amazing concept when you think about it — they want to prevent people who don’t subscribe from receiving channels (i.e., the old “plug in the cord and it just works” setup) so they can generate additional revenue. To generate that additional revenue, they encrypt their streams (i.e., digitize the output). So, after they’ve made these changes with the goal of increasing their revenue, they charge you extra (i.e., the $3.50 digital adapter fee) for each TV that you want to continue watching the services that you, as a paying customer, fork out $100+ a month to access. It’s absolutely absurd from a logic prospective, but standard practice for the cable industry.

    If anything, once they’ve cut off access to non-subscribers by encrypting the streams, they should (a) rent you the boxes 100% free (they created the need for the adapter) and/or (b) decrease your package prices to reflect the additional revenue (once they’ve recouped their initial costs) that they are capturing from new customers that converted once their illegal access was cut off. Want to bet on whether that will ever happen?

    I would note that (unless things have changed in the past year or two), Spectrum (Charter) will rent you a cable card at no additional cost which you can use in a TiVo or other stand-alone receiving that is compatible.

  8. Growler July 12, 2017 at 3:29 pm #

    This is nothing more than to pad their pockets. Comast did this years ago. At first the first 2 adapters were free. Then they started ratcheting up the price to what is not $6 / month in the Nashville area. Unfortunately you cannot even by your own digital adapter. You are stuck with renting them from the cable company.

    • Kravimir July 12, 2017 at 4:55 pm #

      Comcast is worse in that they plan to start charging for their Roku app (and presumably apps for other streaming devices) after they end the “beta testing” period, whenever that might be. However, with Comcast a box for one TV is free, if I remember correctly, although that might not apply to HD-capable boxes.

      Does Charter have an HD fee like Comcast does?

      • Growler July 12, 2017 at 5:10 pm #

        In Nashville you get no boxes for free

  9. ShadowFalls July 12, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

    Keep in mind that before the merger Brighthouse was already looking to transition to digital and had done so in certain areas.

    You are still free to use the app available on Android, iOS, Kindle, PC via web browser. You can also use it with 2012-2016 Samsung Smart TVs, Roku, and Xbox One. These are all without a cost.

    You can also buy your own compatible digital adapter. Keep in mind these things give you access to more channels and in HD that you weren’t able to get access to before. So, this isn’t really nefarious and was something that others have already done.

  10. Tim Reynolds July 12, 2017 at 10:01 pm #

    Super old news… All cable companies try to get you to use this box or that box for viewing… And each box costs per month. So what’s news worthy here?

  11. Mary Ford July 13, 2017 at 6:46 am #

    Except for the name difference, it is worded almost exactly like Comcast’s same announcement in 2012 in my area. We dropped Comcast because of this.

  12. Bobette Kyle July 13, 2017 at 8:03 am #

    It has been this way in St. Louis for two or three years. Until yesterday, our charge per receiver was 6.99 each. It is now zero because we cancelled cable TV yesterday and switched to streaming. 🙂 🙂 🙂 https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/161deeff6b37c139a205681fff52c9ed0bdf40f60c0a9cc3d5b8d59c2ba03860.jpg

  13. boyces July 13, 2017 at 8:05 am #

    Do amazon fire products have a spectrum channel?

  14. Michael Buckley July 13, 2017 at 9:16 pm #

    TWC did this a long time ago….before they were bought by Spectrum

  15. Ronald Ridley July 13, 2017 at 10:49 pm #

    i THOUGHT EVERYONE DID THIS YEARS AGO. Sorry, had the caps lock on.

  16. ChiefT July 14, 2017 at 10:11 am #

    I have Spectrum and desperately want to cut the cord. They are my only choice for internet. What’s to stop them from raising their internet only price to $150 or whatever they want. They are going to get the money one way or the other.

  17. Nicholas Harrington January 8, 2018 at 11:58 am #

    The article’s second paragraph is wrong. They will not be switching to digital. TV is already digital. They are removing analog Chanels and encrypting the ones that are already digital. The encryption is what prevents stealing cable. People who have an old analog TV don’t need to worry because the cable box has analog outputs on it.