2018 Time Warner Cable Internet Review

Time Warner Fastest Cable Internet
Overall Rating 2.8 out of 5
Unlimited data
No contract required
Poor customer support record
Heads Up icon

Heads up:

Charter Communications purchased Time Warner Cable so Time Warner Cable will now be branded as Spectrum. For the most recent information, please refer to our Spectrum articles. We will update this article as information comes in.

What does this mean for you?

Hopefully better service and options to choose from. However, there is an industry trend of mergers seeing a decline in customer satisfaction. We attribute this largely to “growing pains” most companies go through to find the best mutual solution for the expanding customer base. 

THE BOTTOM LINE: Time Warner Cable is a great experience for those looking for freedom in their internet use: no contracts, no data caps, and no hidden fees. Users can select from a broad range of speeds from 15 to 300 Mbps (depending on location) at a reasonable price. TWC also offers bundle packages to give you a single bill for your internet, phone, and TV services.

Is it Right for Me?

YES

  • If you want unlimited data
  • If you have multiple users watching HD video streams or gaming online
  • If you don’t want a contract
  • If you want to bundle services (TV, phone, and internet in one bill)

NO

  • If you’re in a remote or rural location and need satellite internet
  • If you want the fastest internet speeds on the market

Find out if Time Warner Cable is available near you.

Price and plans

Time Warner Cable has good (if not great) prices

Each Time Warner Cable plan includes free access to over 500,00 TWC Wi-Fi hotspots, a free McAfee internet security suite and parental controls, and the option to buy your own modem.

Because of the discrepancy between locations, it’s hard for us to pin down a solid pricing and packages rating. Obviously, if you can get the 50 Mbps plan for the same price as some people get the 15 Mbps plan, it’s a great deal. It’s worth noting that Time Warner Cable’s most expensive internet only plan is $64.99 for 300 Mbps. Comparatively:

  • AT&T has a similar offer of $70 for 300 Mbps;

  • Verizon charges $170 for 300 Mbps;

  • Comcast charges $50 in the first year for 300 Mbps, but then costs as much as $150.

By contrast, Time Warner Cable’s pricing is fair and straightforward.

Bundles: Time Warner internet (+TV/phone)

As we saw with standalone internet pricing, your location determines your pricing and speed. There is a pretty significant difference, so clarify with a sales agent.

According to Time Warner Cable: Triple Play offers expire 9/18/16 and are available to residential new and existing Single Play customers. Triple Play price will increase $20 per month for months 13-24. After 24 months, regular rates in effect at that time apply.

What’s the real price?

Time Warner Cable doesn’t really offer much in the way of promotional offers or savings on first-year pricing. Most packages have a savings of $5 per month if you order online, but aside from that, what you see is what you get.

Luckily, Time Warner Cable has no overuse penalties, limits, data caps, or other usage fees. They also provide free internet security software that some companies charge as much as $10 a month for.

Hidden fees

  • Modem fee:  If you want to lease a modem from TWC, it will be $10 per month per modem. If you do lease a modem, you get free 24/7 support, required replacements, and upgrades.
  • Unreturned equipment fee: If you disconnect your service and are leasing any equipment from TWC, make sure to return your gear; otherwise, you could face a fee of $100 or more.
  • Internet installation: While some companies are known to include installation as part of your sign-up deal, be aware you could pay up to $50 for professional installation.
  • Wi-Fi installation: The Extreme and Ultimate plans include free home Wi-Fi, whereas the Standard and Turbo plans require an installation fee of $20, or you can install it yourself with an Easy Connect kit, which can be ordered at the time of service.

Equipment

If you’re trying to determine whether or not you want to use your own modem or lease a Time Warner Cable modem for $10 a month, consider this: the average modem costs $100 (some as low as $70), so you’d break even around 10 months; anything after could be considered savings.

Speed

Time Warner Cable’s speed is on the faster side of average

Time Warner Cable’s download speeds range from 15 Mbps to 300 Mbps. None of these speeds are slow, but TWC definitely isn’t the fastest we’ve reviewed. In the grand scheme of things, this range is pretty average by comparison:

  • AT&T U-verse internet covers 768 Kbps to 1 GB

  • CenturyLink ranges from 12 Mbps to 1 GB

  • Suddenlink offers speeds from 15 Mbps to 75 Mbps

  • Verizon Fios starts at 50 Mbps and goes to 500 Mbps

Heads up:

Internet speeds are not guaranteed.

The factors you should consider are:

  • Multiple users

  • Computer hardware and software

  • Modem

Below are the FCC’s minimum broadband speed requirements for a single user.

  • Web browsing: 1 Mbps
  • Watching videos: 4 Mbps
  • Video conferencing: 4 Mbps
  • Online gaming: 5 Mbps

Time Warner Cable provides a speed test so you can see how well your internet is operating. If you’re looking to switch internet providers, this test gives you an idea of what you’re using currently so you can compare it to Time Warner Cable’s offerings.

Data

Time Warner Cable does not have data limitations

Having unlimited data is as good as it gets. If you’ve ever had a data limit imposed, you know how frustrating it can be when you’re near the end of the month and close to your data cutoff. Either you’re faced with paying an overage fee, or perhaps worse, your internet speed gets throttled to the the point of unusability—even simple web pages can take eons to load it seems, and forget about watching HD movie streams or playing online games.

Luckily, Time Warner Cable internet has no data usage caps. This means you and everyone else in the household can browse the internet, stream HD videos, or play online games without worry of going over a data limit. By comparison, other companies like AT&T charge an extra $10 or more for an additional 50 GB of data, up to $100 in a single month. With Time Warner Cable, you won’t worry about overage charges.

Customer support

Improvements are coming, but the service is currently among the worst.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) gave Time Warner Cable a score of 66/100 this year. Compared to last year’s score of 58, we see this 14% score increase as TWC making strides in improving its relationship with customers. The overall average of the ratings was 63.3; Time Warner had the third best ACSI score of internet service providers, behind Cablevision and Verizon Fios.

The JD Power & Associates score puts Time Warner Cable below average, barely above Comcast and Frontier. It’s not the worst, but not the best, either.

Finding and visiting a Time Warner Cable store for support should be easy enough. Our search yielded 12 different stores in roughly a 5-mile radius from our service location. This is a benefit for customers who don’t want to face unreturned equipment fees.

The takeaway

Time Warner Cable internet is a great no-contract option

Time Warner Cable’s lack of contracts makes it appealing for renters or those who don’t want to be locked into any agreements. With pretty straightforward pricing, which in some cases beats the competitors, most users can find what they need.

Our Recommendation: Time Warner Cable Ultimate (100 Mbps)

The Ultimate 100 package hits the sweet spot of fast speeds at a reasonable price. For $45 a month in the first year, you get 100 Mbps download speed without internet caps. By contrast, other internet providers like AT&T and Verizon charge $15 more a month for the same download speed, but with data caps and contracts. Please note that this plan is not available everywhere, as it’s part of the fiber network.

Other options:

  • If you can only access the lower speed tier (like our example zip code of 84059), then we’d definitely recommend the Turbo (20 Mbps) plan for its cost efficiency.
  • If you’re looking for a bundled package,  the Internet/TV plan for 200+ channels and 50 Mbps is a good deal, if available in your area.

Time Warner Cable unavailable? Find other options.

  • Divesh Gupta

    Sales people biggest cheater and Customer service is awful and not helpful

  • Michael Dino

    Spectrum SUCKS!!!!! I thought time warner was bad but spectrum is WORSE!!!!
    Outages at least once a week and for hours if not days!!!! Verizon is now in my area and building is being wired for it and can’t wait to switch.

  • Michael Dino

    Spectrum SUCKS I thought time warner was bad but spectrum is WORSE. Outages more than once a week and out for hours if not days!!! Verizon is now available in my area and building is being wired for it and can’t wait to Switch!!!!!!!

  • Lyndee Fleming

    Time Warner Cable/Spectrum seemed to be okay until I moved. I called a few days ahead to get my service changed to my new address. Was told it would be active by 8am the next day. After I moved in two days later there still was no internet. Called again and was told to wait till 7pm and it would work. Nope. Called again and told to wait for tech to arrive. Nope. Called again and told the emergency tech would be there in a hour. Nope. Called again and tech finally arrived the next day. Finally had internet! One more day and it’s off again. Called again and told it was for scheduled maintenance. Really could of given us a heads up!

  • Mary

    Time warner cable actually sucks!!! Do not get it our tv is constantly freezing and it’s so expensive. Also our WiFi sucks to, we cannot connect even if we are sitting right next to the router and we’ve tried to reset it too!! Don’t waste your time with Time Warner/spectrum

  • Stephen W. Jarboe

    To begin, I do not work for Spectrum. I am a 62 year old first time college student and needed a proprietary internet solution instead of the shared apartment complex system. After one year of service, the only increase on my bill is $7.24 (including taxes) for the Ultimate 100 Internet add-on. As far as service, the one time I had to call them (connection drop-outs) the service team arrived within three hours (the time frame set by customer service). They checked my service and connections (no charge) then explained it may have been due to some line upgrades being done in the area. Other than that one time I have had no problem with Time Warner/Spectrum. This may be due to my living on the Island of Hawaii, Land of Aloha (google aloha). I am sorry to hear that everyone had nothing good to say about this service; maybe I am just lucky to live in a society that practices what they preach. Aloha

  • Doreen Palmer

    I am going to write this on my timeline every day. If someone doesn’t like it they can unfriend me. Spectrum has been the worst company that I have ever worked with. Today is Thursday and I have to wait until Monday for an appointment regarding my internet. I want people to know how terrible of a company they are. We are scheduled to get Empire on March 22 and I hope that we have better luck. Other people on this street have not been having the same problem as we have. They can not explain why. They come out to fix it and the next day it is offline again. So be warned that if you have problems, instead of coming out that day or the next morning they make you wait 4 days. If you know of anyone in higher authority at Spectrum please tag them. I will be posting this every day for at least a month.

  • Mark Gallo

    -5 stars …..so horribly bad.if you are reading this ..do not get spectrum