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Philadelphia, PA

3 edits

Data Usage Meter Launched

Today we announced the start of a pilot market deployment of our data usage meter for our High-Speed Internet Service. This deployment begins today for customers in Portland, Oregon. We anticipate deploying this usage meter beyond the pilot market beginning in the first quarter of 2010.

FAQs can be found here.

In addition to announcing this news in this forum, we have also posted information on our forums, on our Network Management page at http://networkmanagement.comcast.net (and with a special detail page at http://networkmanagement.comcast.net/datausagemeter.htm), and we have sent an email on the subject to customers in the pilot market.

While I will not specifically address why there is a 250GB monthly data usage limit, since that has been exhaustively covered before, I do want to provide you with some additional technical detail about the data usage meter.

Since we know many forum users will be curious about how the usage meter works, we commissioned an independent analysis of the usage meter by NetForecast, Inc. Their report on the system is available here on their website.

The pilot market deployment follows employee testing of the meter this past summer. We selected Portland because it is an area where we have a single Cable Modem Termination System (CMTS) platform, enabling us to control for that variable in the pilot (many markets have several different CMTS platforms).

Customers can view the usage meter by logging into Customer Central at »customer.comcast.com and clicking on the “Users and Settings” tab. From there, click on “View details” in the “My devices” section (located toward the upper right hand of the screen) and that will go to the meter page. The usage meter looks like this:

Click to enlarge

Our systems update the meter approximately every three hours, and it displays in whole Gigabytes (GB), shown over a calendar month (not a billing cycle) rounded down to the nearest GB.

We expect that many forum users may ask why this took so long to release. This was due to several factors. We were not prepared to release it until we knew it had been thoroughly tested, was in a form that was simple and easy to use for our typical customer, and had been independently tested by a third party for accuracy.

In addition, as many of you know, we have been in the process of moving from DOCSIS 2.0 to DOCSIS 3.0 and have three CMTS vendors (Arris, Cisco, and Motorola), and several CMTS models from each vendor. So, while we were in the midst of aggressively rolling out DOCSIS 3.0, we were also working to ensure we achieved a high-level of accuracy for the data sent to the data usage meter.


Fixed margin blowout. ~sorto'