Brilliant comment by Dean Landsman responding to Doc:
There is no real “Triple Play.” Rather, there is one connectivity instance (hooking up premises) for which users are given three different recurring billable events. A recurring monthly charge makes sense - after all, they do provide this service. How they bill for it, however, is another issue.
When a cable or a fiber service offers TV (aka video from existing networks or channels, formerly known as “TV”), also offers voice (formerly known as phone service), and also offers internet connectivity, these are all merely billable events, all of which come from that original connection of pipe to premises.
The TV service breaks down into subsets of billable events, such as VOD, premium channels, and so on.
The phone service offers premium billing for certain “long distance” events, many of which are running on the net and are actually less expensive than the old paradigm of copper and undersea cable.
The internet is simply basic connectivity, allowing users to join a network of other users enjoying a connection to the backbone. The upsell here is gigs of use (up or down).
Bottom line: the costs to the companies of providing these services are nowhere near as high as the upsells and events would indicate. But until competitive offerings are allowed to flourish (and IMHO we can hope but should not set our expectation levels too very high, vis-a-vis the incoming administration), the small group of Big Cos controlling this environment will do all they can to control our connectivity, our access, and their ability to charge us for it on a premium and multiple level and event basis.