Residence Halls Switching to Time Warner Cable All-Digital Signal

Marissa Filletti, Staff Writer

Time Warner Cable (TWC) recently announced that it’s switching to an all-digital television signal this spring. In a TWC press release, Steve Makowski, the CNY area vice president of operations, said that with the switch to an all-digital signal, they’re “essentially reinventing the TWC experience.” The switch will offer best-in-class reliability as well as dramatic improvements to the TV product, setting a high bar in the industry for differentiated, exceptional customer service, Makowski said.

More improvements to be expected as part of the switch include an all new digital lineup and an expanded on demand library with more than 30,000 titles.

Utica College has worked out a plan to ensure that all televisions currently on campus will continue to work for the remainder of the semester. So, what can students expect from the switch?

Phase one, which began on Monday, April 11, for the current Utica College signal being replaced with a new universal connection. The connection is temporary and will ensure that no televisions go black and stop receiving channels completely. After the transition, all channels will be broadcasted in standard definition.

As Time Warner completes the transition, station numbers may change and a few channel numbers will be switched over each day over a two-week period. If students notice that their televisions’ have gone blank, they must disconnect their cable box, run the coaxial cable directly into the TV and perform a channel scan.

The next phase will begin during the summer, in which all televisions will be required to have a QAM digital tuner, a device that allows televisions to receive over-the-air digital channels. The device will result in better picture quality across campus and replace all cable boxes. All televisions without one will need an external QAM tuner or television with a built-in tuner.

“I’m excited to hear about anything and everything being done to improve the campus, especially the residence halls,” Savannah Wemette, a junior at UC currently living in Burrstone Hall, said. “Better TV quality? Can’t complain about that.”

In addition to better quality cable TV, James Farr, the director of Integrated Information Technology Services (IITS) at UC, confirms that they are in the process of negotiating faster internet speeds with the college’s primary internet service provider. In the following weeks, speeds will go from 1 Gbps, which is a measurement for billions per second of bandwidth on digital data transmission, to 1.5 Gbps.

Time Warner set up a telephone number specifically for campus support, (844) 725-4339, that students are directed to call if any problems occur during the transition. They will first be assisted by an automated attendant and when asked for a 10 digit phone number, students are instructed to reply with “I don’t have an account.” The auto attendant will go on to ask if you are living in a community where all or part of your services are provided by a landlord or campus, in which case students are instructed to say “Yes.”