TV service query ? ? ?

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This query seeks experience of others on cable, digital, and satellite TV services.
We live in a six-unit apartment building. Is it possible to get a single cable or satellite service for the entire building -- obviously at lower cost? It would seem to me no different than getting service in a single-family residence with TVs in six rooms.
I suppose I could also ask if it might be possible to get a single internet service, using wireless, which would give every unit a connection. Actually, you probably could do that without the server even knowing it.
But, as Richard Nixon so eloquently said, "that would be wrong."
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In the apts I've lived in, each apt had it's own cable box. Why would the cable company allow one service for the entire building? Each apt is a seperate household and they want to bill accordingly. Also, each apt needs at least one cable box, (except for some cases where you can receive bare minimum channels without) so it's not even clear what you mean by "one service".
I'd say from the cable companies point of view it's very different from one single family residence with service in 6 rooms. If you follow your logic, why would 6 seperate apts be much different than me wanting to combine my account with my neighbor's house, so we could save money?
I don't have experience with sat, but doubt it would be different.

Yep, you could. But I bet if you check out the cable company contract for service, it prohibits it. And if you want to do it anyway, ask yourself if you want to be the actual real account holder? Not only do you have possible criminal issues just for doing it, but who knows what the guy in apt 5 is doing on the internet, which shows up as activity by YOU.
There are some wireless internet providers in certain areas who are setting up networks outside the phone/cable companies in some very select areas. If you happen to be in the right area, that could be a possibility, but I'm not sure you'd save enough to make it worthwhile.

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No. Any attempt to share a cable or sat connection would be viewed as a violation of the TOS and would lead to rather expensive legal action.
But you knew that.
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Robert Neville wrote:

or cable company charges based on the number of units. Just have the owner call they up and ask. It'll have to be the owner- they won't allow the renters to do it on their own.
-- aem sends...
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I should have said that we are a coop apartment building -- each resident owns an equal share of the building.
But it would seem to me that if building service is available to rental apartments, no reason it shouldn't be available to coops. The question is whether we could get a discount price that way.
wrote:

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Robert Neville wrote:

Uh, how do you know what the policies of the cable services in his area are? Have you contacted them and asked?
He should contact the cable company, explain the situation, and ask what his options are. One presumes that he is speaking as the property owner or his agent rather than simply as a resident of the property. They may very well have discounted basic service specifically for multi unit rental properties. You really think that hotels spend full boat individual-subscriber retail for every room?
--
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--John
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Don't need to. I'll buy you your favorite adult beverage if you can provide one example of a cable TOS that permits the sharing of a single cable TV signal amonst 6 unrelated families in a multi unit dwelling.
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Called MDU, the owner pays a flat fee per number of units! Offered not only by cable but both satellite providers. I used to be a dish dealer.
I dont drink but much prefer a nice juicy rare steak dinner:)
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Ah yes, but that flat rate per unit times 6 is not the same as a single familay residential, which is what the OP was looking for.
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On Sun, 18 Jan 2009 11:00:08 -0500, "Ray"

I dont have a clue about the cable tv, but as far as the internet, what would they do, each unit gets 4 hours per day (times 6 units = 24 hours). Plus they would need at least 6 email addresses (unless they all use yahoo, hotmail, or gmail "web" type addresses.
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wrote:

if you use wireless. It would be like a motel, which gets one wireless signal and it's available to all units simultenously.
For that matter, my neighbor has an unsecured wireless network which I could use without anyone knowing it. I hasten to add, I don't do that.
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On Sun, 18 Jan 2009 11:00:08 -0500, "Ray"

A cable companies will negotiate a rate for the whole building, basic cable plus a movie pack, but you will need everyone in the building to agree. They did this in a condo I owned, using the existing "house antenna" cables. It lasted a while until we had a few residents who wanted to opt out. Then the cable co came in and ran separate cable to each unit.
As for sharing the internet connection, technically a violation of TOS but hard to prove or even avoid if you got sloppy and ran your router in the open. The down side. It would be S-L-O-W if several people were banging it at once.
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My wife and I each have laptops and we occasionally are online, wireless, at the same time. I haven't detected any slow-down. But if six were simultaneously online, it probably would be different.
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It is all about the specific entity who will be paying the bill. Owner, Co-Op president, or Co-Op treasurer. If payments stop, who will be called into small claims court. What recourse will the cable TV company have to recover any back owed cash, and who's credit rating will take the hit.
I have lived in places that received a very basic cable TV connection. As part of the rent, the owner installed his own distribution service of that basic connection, one outlet per apartment. I didn't like the service for reasons too long to go into here. Such a system would not allow Cable Modem for Internet unless owner had two way broadband amplifier at head-in; not likely to happen. DSL would be the Internet option.
I much preferred each apartment renter being responsible for own bill.
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The directors could vote to make the cable/satellite service a part of the monthly maintainence fee -- just as we do with heat and water.
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Motels and prisons, school dorms and nursing home get bulk packages, called free to guest or MDU. often a bare minimum of channels. the upfront cost to the dealer for a receiver for each channel plus modulators etc can be a killer.
theres money to be made by the satellite dealer, who gets nice residuals.based on the monthly fee for the life of the customer.
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True, but you can bet the cableco will not charge a single family residence rate for that situation.
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wrote:

I wouldn't expect the cable company to charge a single-family rate for six units. But instead of charging six times the family rate, they might just charge five times. That's the whole point of my inquiry.
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On Mon, 19 Jan 2009 02:24:11 -0500, "Ray"

When we did this at the condo it ended up being quite a bit cheaper than X times "basic cable plus HBO" price but our "basic" wasn't exactly what you get in a single family setup, it was only about 40 channels with about the same mix you would expect in a hotel. (I imagine exactly what you got in the hotel down the street). They seem to be careful not to allow a direct comparison of the plans. The problem was that if some tenants wanted to opt out the rate didn't change. They still charged like we were all in it and those who opted out wanted a rebate on their dues. It just got to be a problem the board didn't want to deal with. The cable co ended up wiring each unit and it wasn't pretty work. (exposed raceways down the hall)
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Sharing an Internet connection is easy, all you need is your cable modem and a wireless router. Many routers allow up to 50 connections. You might want a router with extended coverage (see wireless standards). Linksys is the best brand. Each user must then have a wireless adapter installed in their PC. PCI Adapters for desktops, PCMCIA (cards for laptops, most new laptops have built in wireless) or a USB wireless adapter that plugs into your USB port and can be used with any PC. See more info at http://www.linksysbycisco.com/US/en/home
You could run the Router OPEN, meaning anyone could access the network or better yet password protect your network and provide approved users with the network password. Security for wireless networks use to be more difficult to setup, thus there were many OPEN networks, but todays software makes it quite easy to accomplish a secure WAN.
Having mulitple users on the same network is not an issue. You could have 20 or more users surfing the net and not notice a slow. Many people only use a fraction of their bandwith, even with the lowest tier of service. Even if several users were downloading songs or Utube videos, at once, I doubt you would see a slow. However if you had one user downloading data from a usenet binaries newsgroup, using a binary news reader with multiple connections (8-10) then you would definitly experiece some slows.
Cheers, Jim
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