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Time Warner Cable Suffers Nationwide Internet, Video-on-Demand Outage

Time Warner Cable’s broadband and video-on-demand services were knocked offline for up to three hours Wednesday, with the cable company blaming an erroneous Internet Protocol address configuration for the outage.

The snafu occurred during overnight network maintenance starting at about 4:30 a.m. Eastern. TW Cable said the incorrect IP address propagated across its national backbone, and technicians had restored service by 7:30 am Eastern.

“We apologize for any inconvenience this caused our customers,” the cable operator said in an updated statement released Wednesday evening. “A failure of this size is very serious and we are taking the necessary steps to improve our processes with the objective of making sure this doesn’t happen again.”

Comcast, the biggest U.S. cable operator, is in the process of acquiring Time Warner Cable, the country’s No. 2 cable provider, pending regulatory reviews.

Critics of the proposed $45 billion deal say the combined entity will have outsize power in the broadband market with close to 40% share of U.S. connections.As of the end of June, Comcast had 21.3 million broadband subscribers, while TW Cable had nearly 12 million. Comcast is spinning off systems representing about 3.9 million subs to Charter as part of the Time Warner Cable deal.

As of 9 a.m. Eastern, “Time Warner Cable” was the No. 9 trending topic on Twitter across the U.S., after East Coasters began discussing — and complaining about — the service outages.

On Tuesday, the Federal Communications Commission said Time Warner Cable agreed to pay $1.1 million to settle an investigation by the commission that found the MSO did not report multiple network and service outages.

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