Comcast plans faster service in 5 cities

Comcast plans faster service in 5 cities

Comcast Corp. disclosed plans Tuesday for gigabit services in Atlanta, Nashville, Detroit, Chicago, and Miami. The turbocharged Xfinity Internet service will first be available in early 2016 in Atlanta and Nashville.

Detroit, Chicago, and Miami will follow later in 2016. Comcast did not release pricing.

Most Comcast Internet customers today purchase a 50-megabit-per-second service that’s one-twentieth the speed of a gigabit.

The Philadelphia area is not part of Comcast’s initial gigabit rollout.

Comcast, the nation’s largest cable-TV and residential Internet company, says it will offer the fast services by upgrading its existing network. With the choice of markets, the company has matched Google Fiber’s plans in Atlanta, Nashville, and Chicago. AT&T, meanwhile, has said it will offer gigabit speeds in Detroit and West Palm Beach, Fla.

“We’re constantly working to ensure that our customers get the fastest speeds available, and that they get them first,” Comcast Cable’s central division president, Bill Connors, said in a statement.

Comcast’s entrance to the gigabit race comes as the Philadelphia company has initiated data-consumption caps so that heavy Internet users can be charged extra fees. Many consumers have complained to the Federal Communications Commission about the caps.

Data on Comcast’s website last November showed that the company had expanded data-consumption caps to 1,303 zip codes in 15 states, a significant part of Comcast’s cable-TV franchise areas.

In South Florida and Atlanta, Comcast has charged Xfinity Internet subscribers an extra $30 or $35 a month for unlimited Internet usage. In other areas, Comcast has charged subscribers $10 for every 50 gigabytes of Internet data consumption over 300 gigabytes a month, or, as some say, $10 for a 50-gig bucket.
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