TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Comcast Plans 6% Rate Hike / Increase Comes as Phone Firms

Comcast Plans 6% Rate Hike / Increase Comes as Phone Firms

Monty Solomon (
Sun, 4 Dec 2005 22:23:11 -0500

Increase comes as phone firms prepare to enter cable market

By Keith Reed, Globe Staff

It's that time of year again: Cable rates are going up.

Comcast Corp., the nation's biggest cable television provider, is
planning a 6 percent increase, raising the average cost of its most
popular package, the $45 expanded basic tier, by about $2.70 a month.
The change will take effect Jan. 1.

A spokeswoman yesterday said the final rate for Comcast's 1.5 million
customers in Massachusetts has not yet been set.

The increase is no surprise; cable bill increases in winter are as
common as children writing letters to Santa Claus. But this year, it
could carry more significance because cable companies are staring down
the barrel of their biggest potential competition in years from phone
companies such as Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc.

Those firms are on the verge of rolling out video services that will
compete with the cable firm's offerings. The competition could trigger
a price war, if not change the pricing model entirely.

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