In its quest to gain regulatory approval for its $45 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC), Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) has drawn the map wide in terms of defining its realm of competition.
For its part, advocacy blog Consumerist has done some interesting tire-kicking on the notion that Comcast's video and broadband services are in any way competing with the mobile broadband services offered by wireless companies.
The Consumerist's conclusion? Comcast must be delusional.
To creatively prove its point, the blog speculatively compared the price for viewing all 62 episodes of the AMC classic Breaking Bad--about 139.5 gigabytes worth of data--on both wired terrestrial and wireless broadband.
Factoring average pricing and usage caps, Consumerist estimated the cost of streaming the series via wired home network--cable or DSL--to be somewhere between $30-$100. Meanwhile, the cost of using wireless broadband to stream the entire series came in between $1,200 to $2,200. (The latter is a speculative calculation, given that most wireless network providers would throttle down user speeds before nearly 140 GB of data got anywhere close to being used.)
"Comcast keeps on claiming that mobile broadband is real competition for wired home broadband. But for most users, it's just plain not," writes Consumerist's Kate Cox. "Not only is the speed and reliability of mobile broadband still hugely variable depending on location and time of day, but also mobile data is still clearly not competitive on price."
- read this report from Consumerist
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