Comcast Cable CEO Brian Roberts has given a hint that the company might be considering eliminating the unlimited cable data plans for their cable Internet service customers.
If the move materializes, Comcast will join wireless providers like Verizon Wireless and AT&T that have already taken the move. Roberts revealed that at the Business Insider’s Ignition conference held in late December where he was interviewed by Henry Blodget.
In his own words during the on-stage interview, he said; “Just as with every other thing in your life, if you drive 100,000 miles or 1,000 miles you buy more gasoline. If you turn on the air conditioning to 60 vs. 72 you consume more electricity. The same is true for [broadband] usage. Cellular data is already billed this way, the more bits you use, the more you pay. So why not cable Internet, too?”
His sentiments might be supported by most of the Internet service providers but not customers. Roberts appeared to defend caps on data which is the move most of the market leaders are taking possibly to cushion against soaring costs. In this era of cable technology, customers get to use more data than ever thus attracting caps from service providers and Comcast is taking cue. Currently, Comcast has capped its usage at 300 GB per month with charges of $10 for each 50 GB used after.
But Roberts says those are not caps since customers don’t lose their access to Internet even after paying more. “They’re not a cap. We don’t want anybody to ever not want to stay connected on our network.” However, DISH Network’s Sling TV CEO Roger Lynch said Comcast is guilty of introducing the caps. “If you look at cable companies like Comcast now instituting data caps that just happen to be at a level at or below what someone would use when watching TV on the Internet and at the same time launching their own streaming service that they say doesn’t count against the data cap.”