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Comcast’s Usage Cap Suspension Passes First Anniversary (Except in Nashville, Tucson)

Comcast-LogoMore than a year ago, Comcast temporarily suspended its nationwide 250GB usage cap to study its impact and consider what to do about increasing broadband traffic.

For the majority of Comcast customers, this means the provider has ditched its usage cap altogether, allowing customers to use their broadband service without limits.

“This is the way it should have been all along, especially considering how much I spend every month for Comcast broadband,” says Comcast customer Geoff Cox. “I think usage caps at these prices are unacceptable. If Comcast stops antagonizing me, I will reward them with more of my business.”

For Cox, that meant one week after the cap was lifted, he upgraded his service from Performance to Blast. His usage did not immediately increase that much and Comcast now gets more of his money.

“We do about 280GB a month today between me, my wife and our four kids,” Cox tells Stop the Cap! “When the third one becomes a teenager, we will probably upgrade again to Extreme because of all the streamed media being used in this house.”

meterBut if Comcast brings back the cap, Cox will downgrade his service back to where he started.

“AT&T U-verse isn’t much competition for Comcast broadband because U-verse is slower and their 250GB cap I can see getting enforced when AT&T smells money,” Cox tells us. “As I have told my family, usage caps are not acceptable and we have to take a stand somewhere and let them know caps will cost them business, not earn them more money.”

Whether Comcast will listen remains unknown. The company has said little about its usage cap program since suspending it May 17, 2012. At that time, Comcast did say they had not given up on usage caps in principle — they just wanted a more flexible approach while managing those caps.

Last May, the company announced two trials to test which direction Comcast would take with respect to limiting broadband usage.

In Nashville, Comcast increased the usage allowance for all tiers to 300GB per month and planned to sell additional gigabytes in increments of $10 per 50GB;

In Tucson, Comcast adopted variable usage allowances depending on the type of service a customer selected:

  • Economy 300GB
  • Economy Plus 300GB
  • Internet Essentials 300GB
  • Performance Starter 300GB
  • Performance 300GB
  • Blast 350GB
  • Extreme 50 450GB
  • Extreme 105 600GB

The rest of Comcast customers get to test unlimited service, at least until the company determines whether it actually needs caps at all. Cox does not think the company does.

“Cable broadband upgrades have really made neighborhood congestion a non-issue and while the company keeps raising the price of broadband service, their costs keep dropping.”

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