This’ll keep telephone company executives awake at night. It’s very clear that cablecos offer much faster broadband speeds than telcos’ with all-copper wire networks. Competition from cablecos and future broadband applications such as UHD 4K and online doctor visits will force telcos to either upgrade to all-fiber, a long and expensive proposition, or to G.fast, which is much less costly and less expensive. Either that or phase out the wireline broadband business altogether and depend on cellular for their future growth and profitability.
The US cableco Bright House Networks says it will increase broadband download speeds to 150 Mbps starting in December and in early 2015 it will increase them to 300 Mbps — all at no additional monthly charge.
So when the phone company calls and asks a Bright House subscriber to switch to the telco’s 25 Mbps, or in some instances 40 Mbps, what is the consumer going to say — after laughing at the thought of going from 150 Mbps down to 25 or 40 Mbps? And it’s not just that the consumer needs 150 Mbps. It’s that no one wants to downgrade, even for a few dollars a month less. Consumers know that just as no one ever has too much money, no one ever has broadband that’s too fast.
US cablecos have been pummeling telcos with TV ads that mock telcos’ slower broadband speeds and poor telephone support. The ads often use the term “DSL” as if it’s a nasty word.
Bright House Networks said the 150 Mbps speed is for its most popular broadband packages and will be for both new and existing subscribers. Its other packages will also get faster:
– 10 Mbps increases to 15 Mbps
– 30 Mbps increases to 35 Mbps
– 60 Mbps increases to 75 Mbps
– 90 Mbps increases to 150 Mbps
There are no additional one-time or monthly charges for any of the speed increases.
In early 2015, Bright House Networks will offer its residential subscribers speeds of up to 300 Mbps throughout its footprint in Florida.
Other US cablecos are also increasing their broadband speeds at no additional charge to their subscribers. They are typically increasing their most popular broadband offer to 100 Mbps. It appears to be an attempt to get all the subscribers that frequently use OTT services to 100 Mbps, a speed that all-copper telcos cannot match — and may not have the copper wire broadband technology to match for another two or three years.
Bright House Networks said it is continuing to make “significant investments” in its network equipment and last-mile infrastructure with the goal of providing high speed broadband to its subscribers who “love, such as streaming video (Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, etc). And this coming from a pay TV service!
The 1918 tune “How Ya Gonna Keep ‘Em Down on the Farm After They’ve Seen Paree” applies to the broadband business. Broadband subscribers do not want slower broadband than what they have, even if it’s a bit cheaper.
Bright House is preempting all-copper telcos and even all-fiber services such as Google Fiber. When telcos finally get around to offering 100+ Mbps, Bright House’s subscribers are going to ask: “Why should I switch? I already have those speeds. I know the kind of service I get from Bright House and besides my email is already setup with a Bright House address.”
In addition to enabling its subscribers to have higher broadband speeds, Bright House is suggesting that they use OTT services that need lots of bandwidth — even though they are competitors to Bright House’s pay TV services. No doubt when doctors become available live on the Net, as well as when other bandwidth-hungry applications become available, Bright House will push those too. It wants its subscribers to use lots of bandwidth so they stay as its customers. Besides broadband is more profitable than pay TV where it spends millions acquiring content — something it doesn’t have to do with an OTT service.
Additionally Bright House Networks has begun offering in a few areas in Florida speeds up to 1 Gbps, which it calls Florida’s “first Gigabit Communities.”
Bright House Networks offers…
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