Comcast should be able to significantly increase rates without much consequence, especially now that the Trump FCC has performed its indifference to the broadband market’s competition problem sufficiently clear. And Comcast began following into this month, warning consumers across numerous markets that they’ll soon be seeing improvements in broadband and TV prices, and paying Comcast significantly more bills in random fees and appliance rental surcharges each month.
But Comcast is quietly increasing the price of its standalone broadband tier as well.
Comcast’s Performance tier, priced at $65 per month for critical of this year, has slowly climbed to $70 per month in many states as the year rolled on. The folks at Stop the Cap notes that the tier, the budget standalone option Comcast offers that satisfies the FCC’s 25 Mbps definition of broadband, will soon cost users $75 per month. That, of course, doesn’t cover the $11 per month modem rental fee up to $1 since last month, or the mode caps and overage fees connected on top of that rate.
ISPs have long trained customers who refuse to bundle settings they may not need, though this has traditionally been expressed as a “discount” for users that do a bundle. But as users frequently cut both the TV cord for streaming options and trim cable phone service going broadcast only, the skyrocketing cost of standalone broadband grows more of a problem.
Wall Street, while, has been cheering Comcast to take standalone broadband pricing even higher. Back in October, New Street analyst Jonathan Chaplin recommended that Comcast should raise the cost of standalone broadband to $90 per month.
We have discussed that broadband is underpriced, given that pricing has barely developed over the past decade while broadband service has exploded,” he argued excitedly. “Our analysis suggested a ‘utility-adjusted’ ARPU target of ~$90. Comcast lately increased standalone broadband to $90 including modem, paving the way for active ARPU growth as the mix shifts in favor of broadband-only families. Charter will likely follow, once they are within the combination of Time Warner Cable.”
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