dslreports logo
site
spacer

spacer
 
   
spc
story category
Why Comcast's Claims That Wireless is a Competitor Are False
by Karl Bode 08:58AM Tuesday Aug 19 2014
To get their merger approved by regulators, one of Comcast's key arguments is that the company faces so much competition on so many fronts that this competition will keep them honest. Most people know that Comcast enjoys little to no competition on the last mile, with AT&T and Verizon's retreat from many DSL lines making things less competitive than ever.

To get around this obvious truth and logic logjam, Comcast has insisted that pretty much every company in existence is competition, from Google Fiber (whose limited footprint barely scratches Comcast) to Hulu (which Comcast co-owns). Wireless LTE is also being trotted out as an example of "fierce competition," something the Consumerist's Kate Cox does a nice job dismantling this week by examining usage caps:
quote:
Our math says that trying to use your mobile data the same way you use your home wi-fi will cost you about twenty times more per month than your wired broadband bill. You’d have to be Walter White to be able to afford to watch all of Breaking Bad over your wireless network...

Using traditional home, wired broadband — cable or DSL — to watch all of Breaking Bad in one billing cycle would cost the average user between $30 and $100.

Using most wireless broadband — satellite or mobile — to watch all of Breaking Bad in one billing cycle would cost the average user between $1200 and $2200.
So comparable! Even Verizon has admitted that LTE is really nothing like a fixed-broadband connection. This is all of course before you remind people that Comcast and Verizon these days are marketing partners selling each others' services, not really competitors.

view:
topics flat nest 
78036364

join:2014-05-06
USA

Of course

instead of spending $2200 trying to stream Breaking Bad you could simply buy the blu-rays. Amazon has the whole series on sale now for $102.50
norm

join:2012-10-18
Pittsburgh, PA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

Re: Of course

said by 78036364:

instead of spending $2200 trying to stream Breaking Bad you could simply buy the blu-rays. Amazon has the whole series on sale now for $102.50

Amazon requires a separate internet connection to purchase. Best Buy has the entire series on blu-ray for $164.99. If you have a Best Buy in your area, then you have competition to your cable company.
shpatb

join:2013-07-16

1 recommendation

Or stream the whole thing on Netflix for 8 dollars, but that would require a wired connection that doesn't charge overage caps unlike Comcast or wireless.
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY
Yeah or dig up your back 40 with a hoe and shovel.
Brim77

join:2012-03-16
Lansing, MI

1 edit

3 recommendations

Of course, your reply has nothing to do with the current issue: comcast claiming wireless LTE as competitor.
Expand your moderator at work

TAZ

join:2014-01-03
Tucson, AZ
kudos:3

4 recommendations

No need for all that

The #1 reason not to trust the claims: Comcast said it. If Comcast/Cohen tell me the sky is blue, I'm going to look out the window and expect to see the sky is red.

newview
Ex .. Ex .. Exactly
Premium
join:2001-10-01
Parsonsburg, MD
kudos:1
Reviews:
·DIRECTV
·Comcast

6 recommendations

Re: No need for all that

Oh ... you mean like when Comcast claimed Time Warner Cable was a competitor when they wanted the NBC merger, but now is magically NOT a competitor when they want the TWC merger?

»arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014···o-merge/

ieolus
Support The Clecs

join:2001-06-19
Danbury, CT

Competition

Of course they are a competitor! Wireless just decides not to compete on price. They differentiate their service by letting you take it anywhere, yeah, that's the ticket! Run with that one Comcast.
--
"Speak for yourself "Chadmaster" - lesopp

Zenit

join:2012-05-07
Purcellville, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
·T-Mobile US
·Verizon Online DSL

1 recommendation

Dumbest thing I have heard in a long time

Wow Comcast, you really want that merger don't you?

I know people stuck in semi-rural areas with no broadband. Only 1 WISP with coverage but they charge $99 a month for 1mbit with a $250 install fee and daily caps. 1 mile away is a wealthy subdivision with FIOS, 1.5 miles away is Comcast plant. The only cell providers with coverage are AT&T (3G), Verizon (LTE), and T-Mobile (EDGE).

They are literally stuck with shitty cellular internet with low caps. The Verizon CO they are served out of has no DSL, no ISDN, no nothing. It might as well have a Bell sign on the door still, its like 1982. Its rather sad as they are near the border (a matter of 1/2 of a mile) of a CO that will be getting a 100% FIOS build-out eventually, as soon as the county can finish pulling the strings of VZ.

They are with AT&T and get a 15gb bucket spread over 2 phones and a hotspot - overages are common and service quality is poor.

This mess is literally a stones throw from the nations capital.

For Comcast to say Wireless is a competitor, with the low insane caps and high overage cost, fluctuating latency and speeds is a joke that is an insult to rural citizens that are stuck with no other option.

hello123454
Premium
join:2002-02-02
Wilmington, DE
kudos:1

Re: Dumbest thing I have heard in a long time

Maybe they should move....

PapaMidnight

join:2009-01-13
Baltimore, MD

3 recommendations

said by Zenit:

I know people stuck in semi-rural areas with no broadband.

But they have satellite available to them, so clearly there is competition.

/s
greatshow09

join:2013-07-07
Minneapolis, MN
Umm... Haven't they heard of sattelite internet? There's three services that offer speeds that can get as high as 20mbps anywhere (Exede, yes it does get 160% advertised)

cableties
Premium
join:2005-01-27

1 recommendation

Re: Dumbest thing I have heard in a long time

What about latency? Weather? I doubt anyone gets 20Mbs.
And the cost for 15Mbs is over $100/month. Not cost effective.

»www.xconomy.com/national/2014/05···t-cable/
--
Splat

Zenit

join:2012-05-07
Purcellville, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
·T-Mobile US
·Verizon Online DSL

Re: Dumbest thing I have heard in a long time

Exactly. Not only is it pricey, the latency is pretty bad, as well as the data cap.

Might as well buck up and pay for VZ's LTE services - similar prices and speed but good latency.
As much as I hate to steer people to VZ's landline/DSL replacement, it really is their only choice in this case for half decent performance...at a price.

Meanwhile the CO is left with an old ESS humming away, no broadband to be seen outside of wireless waves...

I did get PapaMidnight's joke - it was mimicking the rather convoluted things Comcast has been saying lately. In fact, Comcast has been making such little sense they even got Verizon to say the truth that Wireless is not a wire line competitor in terms of performance.
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
That is because unfortunately investors matter more than customer service. That is what killed FiOS deployment, Wireless is a bigger cash cow.
--
Filan - Aurin Spellslinger - Pago - Team Legacy

Zenit

join:2012-05-07
Purcellville, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
·T-Mobile US
·Verizon Online DSL

Re: Dumbest thing I have heard in a long time

Yep, I know very well about VZ's master plan regarding their outdoor plant and the drive to Wireless, its rather disgusting.

Good news is the current management is setting up an infrastructure disaster that cant be ignored - the company is really putting itself at risk.

Jason Levine
Premium
join:2001-07-13
USA

Per Episode Cost

The last season of Breaking Bad was 16 episodes long. If you used your Internet Connection for nothing but Breaking Bad viewing, you'd spend $1.88 - $6.25 per episode for cable/DSL Internet access. The same for wireless broadband would be $75 - $137.50 per episode. This ignores any cost to actually buy the episodes.

As others pointed out, the entire Blu-Ray costs $164.99, or about the cost of two episodes viewed over a wireless broadband connection but less than the cost of the entire season streamed via a wired broadband connection.
--
-Jason Levine

RWSI

join:2012-11-27
Albuquerque, NM

Wireless

Comcast is a "wireless" competitor. Installing a 2nd xfinitiwifi most routers make them just that. In other words a customer not a subscriber of regular services can pay for a xfinitywifi without having to call to get installed. Wireless is in definition without wires. DUH! They make money servicing customers via radio frequencies.

IowaCowboy
Iowa native
Premium
join:2010-10-16
Springfield, MA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Verizon Broadban..
·Comcast

They should only be allowed to merge under one condition

The merger condition I'd like to see is that they become regulated utilities and be subject to state DPU control with universal service, minimum service standards and have to justify pricing through rate cases. Wireless should have to do the same. If that was proposed as a merger condition, they'd abandon the merger proposal overnight.
--
Stop the Comcast-Time Warner merger, I'd rather Time Warner buy out Comcast.

Flyonthewall

@206.248.154.x

All the responses indicate one thing clearly.

Why people pirate. No really cost effective alternatives. Either buy a fairly pricey DVD (yeah, it is there, and until it breaks down or you break it is permanent), or pay through the nose for internet. And let's remember the pricing on these DVD's has a built in payoff to content creators that doesn't factor in the lack of difficulty in running off thousands of copies, ie---huge profit.

Seems companies that provide internet do not want you to use that connection to view movies and shows, for that they want you to pay for broadcast, and price accordingly.

How long before the camel back breaks?
dewdude

join:2010-03-27
Manassas, VA

1 recommendation

Already evil.

What about the areas that currently have no 4G? My sister lives in a city where there's no 4G coverage, lousy 3G coverage, and no DSL.

As a result, Comcast is the *only* broadband provider in her area; and packages start at $70/month.....for internet....the lowest package they offer.

Comcast couldn't be honest if they were lying about being honest.
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA

Comcast's Claim?

Where exactly did Comcast claim you could use wireless as a replacement for cable-tv?