Comcast rolls out 100 Gbps Ethernet in Tallahassee; gets heat for residential 1-gig pricing in Chicago

Comcast Businesses announced the expansion of its 100 Gbps-capable Ethernet service to Tallahassee, Fla.

“Our network not only delivers the highest speed and capacity to Tallahassee businesses, it’s also built to easily accommodate future growth,” said Reggie Scales, VP of business services for Comcast’s Florida Region. “Multi-gigabit speeds and reliability are critical for business today, and those needs are growing exponentially.”

Comcast has been offering a fiber-based broadband service up to 10 Gbps to Florida business since 2011. Last year, it rolled out pricey fiber-based, multi-gigabit services in the region’s residential subscribers. It’s now working on deploying more affordable 1-gig services in Florida based on DOCSIS 3.1 over its traditional HFC network infrastructure. 

Even though Comcast is in the early phases of its DOCSIS 3.1 deployments, the MSO is already drawing controversy over its pricing methods. 

In Chicago, for example, it’s drawing heat for not more aggressively advertising a lower-cost, $70-a-month pricing option for customers who sign up for a three-year commitment. 

Calling it the “Keyser Söze of Internet offers,” Ars Technica notes that the the $70-a-month option is not advertised in Chicago the way it is marketed in cities like Atlanta and Nashville, where Comcast deployed DOCSIS 3.1 earlier, and which has more competition for 1-gig services. 

Comcast is selling DOCSIS 3.1 services in Chicago for $140 a month. The service includes a data cap but not commitment requirement.

Ars said it spoke to several Chicago-area Comcast customers, who told the pub that the MSO denied the availability of the cheaper option.

Comcast, however, said it does, in fact, exist in the region. 

A Comcast rep told the pub that $70-a-month pricing is being tested in Arlington Heights; Naperville; Plainfield; Waukegan; Tinley Park; Batavia; Bloomington, Illinois; and South Bend, Indiana.

“Those interested just need to sign up on the online portal and they will be contacted to schedule an install,” the rep said. “Our engineers and techs want to test in a variety of neighborhoods and environments so they can learn more about the install process, networking, etc.:”

For more:
- read this press release
- read this Jacksonville Business Journal story
- read this Republican story
- read this Ars Technica story

Related articles:
Comcast begins second leg of DOCSIS 3.1 rollout in Nashville
Comcast expanding data cap test to Chicago
Comcast pledges $100M investment in Chicago-area network improvements

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