Originally published: June 13, 2012
Last updated: June 13, 2012 - 5:00pm
The Department of Justice is looking at the way Comcast and the rest of the cable industry deal with broadband and online video. So what does that mean for you? Higher broadband bills — at least if you plan on streaming a lot of online video. And no chance that today’s cable bundles go away anytime soon. That’s the takeaway from Bernstein Research’s super-savvy Craig Moffett.
- Broadband providers are already moving away from broadband plans that charge everyone the same price, as long as their use stays under a certain cap, and toward usage-based pricing.
- That’s a problem for Netflix, as well as for anyone thinking about getting into “over the top” video, because that will effectively increase the price of those services.
- When Netflix complained that Comcast was giving its in-house streaming video service a boost over Netflix by not counting the Comcast service against its own broadband cap, Comcast responded by dropping its cap and moving to usage-based pricing.
- Federal regulators may be also looking into the cable industry’s practice of bundling channels — which means that you can’t watch the Disney Channel unless you also pay for ESPN — that’s not going to go anywhere. Because no one’s breaking any laws.
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