After announcing earlier this week it had beat Comcast to Washington D.C. with DOCSIS 3.1 powered services, RCN is reportedly set to challenge the nation’s largest cable company in its own backyard, Philadelphia.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, RCN will soon announce that its $69.99 1-gig service will be available in the suburbs of Philly, which houses Comcast’s corporate headquarters but does not yet have DOCSIS 3.1 service from the MSO. One of the nation’s few cable overbuilders, RCN also deployed 1-gig services over its HFC network in Chicago earlier this fall, where Comcast has deployed DOCSIS 3.1 services.
RCN reps didn’t immediately respond to FierceCable’s inquiry for comment. But Chris Fenger, RCN's chief operating officer, told the Inquirer that internet usage has seen dramatic increases of up to 50 percent a year in the Philly area, and subscribers "need the bandwidth, and we want to make sure we are ahead of that curve.”
In the Philadelphia region, RCN serves the Delaware County towns of Clifton Heights, Upper Darby, Drexel Hill, and Yeadon, in addition to municipalities in the Allentown area.
Comcast said its DOCSIS 3.1-enabled Gigabit Pro service will be in 15 cities by early 2017, but it has yet to announce when it will roll into Philadelphia.
Comcast Business has, however, announced a $30 million expansion to its fiber network in the City of Brotherly Love. The MSO said it will reach more than 3,000 businesses directly and will make the network “more accessible and affordable than ever before.”