In the Know: Is the weather radar map returning to Comcast channel 25?

TIM ATEN
Despite the message above posted last year on Comcast channel 25, the local weather radar map is not returning after all.

Despite the message above posted last year on Comcast channel 25, the local weather radar map is not returning after all.

Q: It’s been over a year since weather radar on Comcast Channel 25 went missing. With hurricane season starting in June, is Comcast going to provide this service? Their current message to go to Channel 47 or 101 just doesn’t do the job.

— Mary Elliott, Naples

Q: Still waiting to see the return of the radar channel. Any updates? I see where they were so proud to have returned the NOAA broadcast, at least, but the broadcast is for Lee County and north. The old channel before they cut it off was the Collier County broadcast. Two different channels. We need the Collier edition, not Lee, and the return of the radar. Channel 101 doesn’t give anything beyond the county, so you can see approaching weather.

— George, Naples

A: Despite obvious public interest within the last year to restore the real-time radar image to Comcast’s local lineup, and cable TV executives initially claiming they intended to do so, the map will not be returning to Channel 25 after all.

“While Comcast engaged in extensive program negotiations for a local weather radar product, we were not successful in reaching an agreement, and as a result, we will be unable to carry the video programming portion for channel 25,” said Barbara Hagen, Comcast’s vice president and general manager for Southwest Florida. “A variety of factors were considered, including the availability of similar weather programming and information. We will continue to provide NOAA Weather Radar audio service on channel 25.”

As for “similar weather programming and information,” Hagen includes the 24/7 weather data on The Weather Channel on Comcast’s Expanded Basic/Digital Starter channel 47, WeatherScan on Digital Preferred channel 101, and NBC News Now on Digital Limited Basic channel 216. She also cites radio and Internet availability of local weather, including NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards broadcasts on one of seven VHF frequencies from 162.400 MHz to 162.550 MHz, as well as online at www.noaa.gov and weather.com.

Of course, residents also still have a local interactive weather radar map available at naplesnews.com/weather. Zoom in on local streets to see real-time animated radar and weather conditions around the clock.

Previous "In the Know" columns on this topic:

Nov. 30, 2011: Is weather radar broken promise from Comcast?

Sept. 13, 2011: Readers restless with Comcast’s channel 25 radar vanishing act

Aug. 2, 2011: When is Comcast bringing back Channel 25 weather radar?

July 5, 2011: What happened to Comcast weather radar channel 25?

Comcast's current Xfinity TV lineup shows 42 Spanish-language channels.

Comcast

Comcast's current Xfinity TV lineup shows 42 Spanish-language channels.

Comcast queries continue

Q: In many areas of the country, Comcast (as well as DirectTV and Verizon) offers a large variety of foreign language channels. A look at the Comcast website shows that they carry as many as 15 different foreign language (“international”) channels, including Asian, Japanese, Arabic, Portuguese, Russian, etc., etc. Here in Southwest Florida, Comcast offers only Spanish language channels and one German channel in addition to the English lineup. I can understand the Spanish channels being offered, but why in the world does Comcast refuse to carry any others in SWFL? You can get them on DirectTV, but I have no line of sight to the satellite, and even if I did, my building won’t permit a dish on my balcony.

Had I known we would be shut out of French programming I might not have bought this condo. In my view, Comcast is missing some serious business and, more importantly is irritating a lot of people, with this policy. My wife is French, and we know dozens (and dozens) of French-speaking people here during the season, not only French-French but Quebecois. There are even more German-speaking people here. I know very well that this may be a seasonal crowd, but really, Comcast should be catering to that crowd just as every other business in SWFL is. I look forward to Barb Hagen’s response. Merci.

— Carl Schwarz, Naples

A: Customer interest is one factor Comcast uses to create its channel lineups, Hagen said, so perhaps your request will make a difference. Keep in mind, however, that strong local interest to bring back the weather radar channel was not enough.

“Comcast works to deliver the most value and best mix of programming to its customers,” Hagen said. “Comcast makes decisions about its channel lineups based on a number of factors including customer interest, demographics and contractual agreements. We appreciate this very useful feedback, and I will forward it on to the appropriate decision makers for consideration.”

For customers interested in German programming, DeutsheWelle is available on Channel 680 as an optional premium service, Hagen said.

On March 28, Comcast completed the upgrade of its customers in Collier and south Lee counties to all-digital delivery, Hagen said. She said benefits of this conversion include digital quality picture and sound, the addition of two 3D channels, 15 additional standard definition channels, 44 more high-definition channels joining more than 100 HD options, a larger On Demand library, and faster Internet speeds.

These additional channel options just make it more frustrating to reader Carl Schwarz, who contends his foreign language niche is not being targeted.

“To put a finer point on it, there are around fifty — yes, FIFTY — Spanish language channels, and some other channels are devoted to specialty interests so obscure and narrow that I can’t believe there would be more than a few — very few — people who really watch that stuff,” he writes.

___

Have a local question? Email it with your name and city of residence to intheknow@naplesnews.com.

"In the Know" is published Mondays and Wednesdays in the Naples Daily News. Find a complete archive of "In the Know" columns at naplesnews.com/intheknow.

© 2012 Naples Daily News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 26

OP writes:

in response to weather_radar_25:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I do not agree that it is a an related issue. I used it when I was in my twenties. I used it when I was in my thirties. I used it when I was in my forties. I used it until they took it away. Anyone who goes outside during the summer afternoons should be using it as a safety tool.

You have chosen your ground on the issue, but, in my opinion you don't have a reasonable leg to stand on. We are left to use the radar by accessing it over our computers, it is still available, just less convenient to access. (I also find that the computer models are not real time as the televised version seemed to be). The pronounced desire for this product will not go away; get over it.

Btw, if age is the controlling factor with your other complaints then one day, God willing, you will be old enough to be the problem for that day's youth.

tiedyeted writes:

Glad to see Comcast remains committed to serving the public interest in return for access to the public right-of-way so they could lay their cables.

unfatcat writes:

Although this issue may seem s-----; it really ticks me off. Because of the fast building storms in the Everglades and the beaches; when one leaves their home, it may not be raining; but five blocks away is a thunderstorm. Traveling between Naples and Fort Myers on the highway can be tricky in heavy raining weather and I would take a different route. I depend on chanel 25 before I leave my house. When a person pays as much as we do for Comcast service, the least they can do is provide a basic chanel of weather. I can find 20 other stations that can be dismissed!

cozyboy writes:

folks it COMCRAP. Did you really think the radar was coming back? Just google radar and you'll find other outlets for this.

Klaatu writes:

Here's just one more of the many reasons people have been dropping Comcast !

They're no longer the only game in town!

Cable is on it's way out! Much like the land line!

ed34145 writes:

Comcast, winner of the title "Worse Company in America" (It's true...look it up). It's amazing that anyone stays with them. Century Link and even Direct TV offer so much more....especially in terms of DVR services.

MisterK writes:

You suck Comcast. You have no clue how important the Ch 25 radar was to southwest Floridians.

Klaatu writes:

You can cut the cable !
Watch local channels in HD with just a digital antenna.
Use your wireless router to stream Netflix (8.00)
and hulu plus(8.00) have 4x the content at a fraction of the price! Use DSL (24.00) for internet
Comcast charges over $48.00 just for internet.

Don't have an internet ready TV no problem buy a roku !

Google: cut the cable
I was paying $1440 per yr. Now pay $440 per yr. including DSL.! Have so many more options and no longer have to deal with the poor service comcast provides!
The keep cutting channels and have been for the past 5yrs.

nap68 writes:

nws.noaa.gov and you can get the radar online, no need for a tv channel with it.

Here4Now writes:

There is NO excuse for this!! Just another reason why the Vineyards, and several other communities I am told, have dropped Comcrap and have signed contracts with other providers. Vineyards went with NuVu (or something like that) which WILL have the weather radar station!! Plus so many other perks that Comcrap just turns their nose up to.

It will be all fiber optic. No s----- DTA boxes needed on EVERY TV like Comcrap requires. More channels. Phone with long distance AND internet INCLUDED!!

Comcrap will be studied in business schools across the country in the future on how NOT to run a business, or how TO destroy a business through horrible customer service. Simply pathetic.

wrightconnection writes:

I've been a communcations contractor in sw fla for many years now and I don't have one single customer that has anything good to say about Comcast cable tv service, not one. That having been said, I have had Directv service for over 9 years now and they are the best. Yes there is some channel lag, yes you lose your signal for a brief period once in a great while due to STRONG thunderstorms, (that's what the DVR is for people). I get more HD channels with Directv, and they are on 24/7/365, I have the best sports coverage, who else gives you every single NFL game every Sunday & Monday, I have a GREAT DVR that I can connect an external hard drive to if needed, I have internet capability on Directv's receiver to access services like Youtube, Pandora, CUSTOM WEATHER CHANNELS, and much more. I don't work for Directv or Comcast. This is my opinion based on years of experience. Directv ROCKS, Comcast sucks. That's how it is. One more thing, Directv customer service is awesome, need more time to pay your bill, no problem, want custom channels, they work with you, have technical problems, they know what they are talking about. There is NO comparison between Directv and Comcast. To be fair, I do have Comcast internet, It's the fastest, but pretty expensive and the price has changed twice since December of 2011.

RichardBalles writes:

Woooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

John_Galt writes:

Monopolies only happen with government assistance. When there are monopolies, the consumer gets screwed. End government sponsored monopolies. More competition means each business strives to improve their product because the market is a very swift regulator. (just look at how fast those pink slime companies went under!)

Learn more about the free market at

http://www.electRichter.com

or

http://www.collierLP.com

Heraclitus writes:

What is Barbara Hagen's e-mail and phone number? ... Seriously!!

Every subdivision around us is dropping Comcast. When our contract is up, I'll vote to drop them from here too. What do they care... it's only a few hundred families.

Rainy season is coming and no one wants to turn on a computer every time they want to go out. Channel 25 was perfect as it was for those of us that spend lots of time outdoors.

Why did they wait to be asked? It's all about money and advertising.

SCROOM.

Heraclitus writes:

in response to John_Galt:

Monopolies only happen with government assistance. When there are monopolies, the consumer gets screwed. End government sponsored monopolies. More competition means each business strives to improve their product because the market is a very swift regulator. (just look at how fast those pink slime companies went under!)

Learn more about the free market at

http://www.electRichter.com

or

http://www.collierLP.com

The problem is that infrastructure is expensive. If every supplier of some type of utility service installed their own infrastructure, it could get very confusing... and cluttered. Of course, the private sector probably has an answer for that... $$$$$$$.

VivaLaBeachStore writes:

in response to Klaatu:

You can cut the cable !
Watch local channels in HD with just a digital antenna.
Use your wireless router to stream Netflix (8.00)
and hulu plus(8.00) have 4x the content at a fraction of the price! Use DSL (24.00) for internet
Comcast charges over $48.00 just for internet.

Don't have an internet ready TV no problem buy a roku !

Google: cut the cable
I was paying $1440 per yr. Now pay $440 per yr. including DSL.! Have so many more options and no longer have to deal with the poor service comcast provides!
The keep cutting channels and have been for the past 5yrs.

Awesome. No need for Cable no need for 'The Oldspaper'. Even I can figure out the radar on the phone and just love the 'newness' of the news

savenaples writes:

Comcast gets "WORST COMPANY IN THE USA" reviews.

And deserves them.

The biggest rackets in comsumer goods are cable, satelite and cell phones. All a racket - and the worst offender is Comcast.

Know why they push the BS "Xfinity"???

Beacuse the name Comcast is so bad - they are trying to change the name so we - the s----- consumer can't figure it out!!!!!

Comcast with their BS $20 late credit?? Blow your day sitting around for them to show up.

Even A/C repair guys guarantee 1 hr - and if they don't make it - they pay the ENTIRE BILL.

It is time to go 100% internet. Get high speed DSL, get blue ray for apps and hulu and such, an external antennae to get local HD channels - and kiss the $150/month goodbye.

COMCAST -

WORST COMPANY IN AMERICA.

anotherPOV writes:

There is an app for that. Put it on your phone and you are seconds away from the radar no matter where you are. Now, quit your incessant whining about Comcast: cancel, shut up or both. I need to know what restaurants are going out of business and don't need to read endless articles about a weather radar.

wonderful (Inactive) writes:

in response to Klaatu:

Here's just one more of the many reasons people have been dropping Comcast !

They're no longer the only game in town!

Cable is on it's way out! Much like the land line!

You just might have something, clot~!

Whatever happened to Craig Wolfe?

mr_1_term_proposition writes:

in response to OP:

I do not agree that it is a an related issue. I used it when I was in my twenties. I used it when I was in my thirties. I used it when I was in my forties. I used it until they took it away. Anyone who goes outside during the summer afternoons should be using it as a safety tool.

You have chosen your ground on the issue, but, in my opinion you don't have a reasonable leg to stand on. We are left to use the radar by accessing it over our computers, it is still available, just less convenient to access. (I also find that the computer models are not real time as the televised version seemed to be). The pronounced desire for this product will not go away; get over it.

Btw, if age is the controlling factor with your other complaints then one day, God willing, you will be old enough to be the problem for that day's youth.

Through all those years how the hell could you afford all those tissues and hand cream bottles to "use it"? .....you ma'am need a new hobby!

big_peach_e writes:

Good luck fighting Comcast. Since the cable companies mapped off territories so they don't have to compete with each other, you can flush any complaints right down the toilet. Ever spend two hours waiting at the Comcast office to exchange their broken equipment? I have.

FreshFace writes:

WHO CARES!?!?!

volochine writes:

Minituae.

Bramble writes:

Slot will be filled with another home shopping channel.

Comcast, the company that really doesn't care about what the TV customer wants. Too big to fail.

Dr_Howard_Dr_Fine_Dr_Howard writes:

Comcast aka "The Evil Empire"

HAP writes:

OMG! Do people think this town cater's to your every whim? Get a life, or look up the weather on the internet, the newspaper, or your local news.

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