Charter Communications Inc. was urged by the New York attorney general to improve broadband service for former Time Warner Cable Inc. customers following a $55 billion takeover.
In a letter to Charter’s Chief Executive Officer Tom Rutledge Wednesday, an enforcement official for New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said he hoped the company would “clean up Time Warner Cable’s act and deliver the quality Internet service New Yorkers deserve and have long been promised.”
Charter has said it intends to phase out the Time Warner Cable brand, which has earned low marks from customers for years. Schneiderman has been investigating promises by Time Warner Cable and other broadband providers of blazing-fast speeds that allow quick downloads of movies, music and television shows.
Time Warner Cable is the dominant cable provider in Charlotte.
After asking New York customers to use open-source tools to test their Internet speeds as part of the probe, “the results we received from Time Warner Cable customers were abysmal,” said Tim Wu, senior enforcement counsel and special adviser to Schneiderman, in the letter. The company failed “to achieve the speeds its customers were promised” and “generally performed worse in this regard than other New York broadband providers.”
Wu, an influential law professor who advocates for freedom of access to Internet content and coined the phrase “net neutrality,” joined Schneiderman’s office last year. He helps advise the attorney general on enforcement efforts for new technologies.