I just had an unexpected surprise after a phone call to Time Warner today about my current Road Runner pricing. I’ve recently been going over my current monthly expenses and paying especially close attention to the recurring monthly service bills I have. Of those I was currently paying $39.95 a month for Road Runner Standard service cable internet through Time Warner. I had recently seen them advertise the same service for new customers for $29.95 for 12 months. I know that I could save a considerable amount of money by switching back to DSL which I had used a few years back.

I could currently get basic DSL through At&T for $15 a month if I wanted to. But I’m a speed freak and don’t think I could downgrade to a slower speed. They’re closest product to compete with Road Runner Standard is their “Elite” package which runs $34.95 a month with downstream speeds up to 6Mbps and upstream speeds up to 768Kbps. Unfortunately I’m too far from the Central Office and don’t have this service available to me. They don’t offer anyting as fast as the Road Runner Extreme package.

So I decided to call Time Warner to see if I could lower my bill to the promotional price. After a few idle threats I made of jumping ship to DSL for lower pricing to no avail the customer service rep mentioned another option. She said they could offer me an upgrade to Road Runner Extreme as a “new” customer for 12 months at the same price I was currently paying. She explained how upgrading to the “Extreme” service would increase my downstream speed from 6 Mbps to 10Mbps and would increase my upstream from 512Kpbs to 1Mbps for no additional cost. My eyebrows raised and my brain couldn’t transmit the words to my mouth fast enough to tell the rep “sign me up”. I then ask how long it will be before I receive this upgraded service and she said as soon as we get off the phone.

I quckly made way to my network closet and turned the modem off from the front panel and ran a speed test. Hmmm…I didn’t seem to see a difference. I decided to unplug the power cord for a few seconds and try again. After my modem was ready I made my way back to my favorite site to run a speed test and BOOM talk about a speed bump. You can see the before and after images. So it’s a pretty substantial boost. Especially for free.

So in review, if you are a current Time Warner “Standard” cable internet subscriber (although I’d imagine they offer this as an upgrade from their “Basic” to “Standard” service as well) in Southern California (not sure other available areas) call customer service and ask if you could get in on the new customer promotion to upgrade to “Extreme” service for 12 months for the same price. I also want to point out that the “Extreme” service varies by area and there is a slightly slower version that runs 8Mbps downstream and 512Kbps upstream if the faster service isn’t available.

Update: According to this thread on the Fatwallet forums some existing customers have been able to get the Standard service for $29.95 after some creative methods dealing with customer service.

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