Comcast's best plan to prevent cord cutting is no longer available.

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by schatham, Jan 12, 2019.

  1. schatham

    schatham Active Member

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    Just for info:

    Comcast's best plan to prevent cord cutting is no longer available. Internet Pro Plus and Internet plus has been shelved. I still use Pro Plus and hope it stays grandfathered in.

    Also stand alone Digital Economy TV has been canceled.

    If you use these don't change
     
  2. DVR_Dave

    DVR_Dave Well-Known Member

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    It looks like Choice Double Play is basically the same as Internet Plus (sans HBO).

    I don't recall what Internet Pro Plus was. Similar to Choice Double Play + Speed Increase to Performance Pro (sans your pick of HBO or ?)?
     
  3. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Comcast isn't really much interested in standalone TV customers anymore. They (rightly) see broadband as being their core product.

    That said, at least in my area, standalone Digital Economy TV (100+ channels) and standalone Limited Basic TV (10+ channels) are both still available.

    Digital Economy TV is regularly priced (for 1 TV, no DVR service) at $39.95, plus the mandatory $10 broadcast TV fee, so actually $49.95 (plus additional taxes). New customers can get it for $20 off per month for the first year if they sign a one-year contract. To get channels in HD, add another $10. To get DVR service, add another $10. Then add $10 per each additional TV.

    The real crime, though, is what they regularly charge for Limited Basic, which is pretty much just your locals, along with CSPAN, plus some free on-demand content. It's $32.95, plus the mandatory $10 broadcast TV fee, so actually $42.95 per month (plus additional taxes)! And that's in SD without DVR service for just one TV! Seems like they only charged about $15 for that level of service a decade ago. Also, it was actually cheaper back then to package Limited Basic TV together with broadband than to just get broadband alone. For a few years there, I remember getting Comcast's Limited Basic that way and watching and recording it with a Sony HD DVR that I bought, the DHG-HDD250, I think it was.
     
  4. smark

    smark Well-Known Member

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    Internet Plus is still available looking at Xfinity.com
     
  5. schatham

    schatham Active Member

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    Over at DSL reports as of Jan 1 they say it's no longer available. Maybe it's region specific as to when they take it away.
     
  6. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    Comcast's eagerness to keep TV subs at any cost has never made any sense to me. Shareholders for some strange reason care about the number of subscribers, not profitability. If I were Comcast, I would get rid of all of the skinny bundles and cheap Double Play stuff, as the margins are no better than internet only, and possibly worse. It makes sense for them to offer the big, bloated Double- and Triple-Play packages, but for marginal customers, let them cut the cord. Comcast is a monopoly in most areas, so they are stuck with Comcast for absurdly overpriced broadband, where Comcast has 90%+ margins.
     
  7. giomania

    giomania New Member

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    Their internet data caps are also a crime. We are a family of five, and when the kids are off school, it is a problem for us, as they live on YouTube. I recently purchased a Circle device to start controlling their usage.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  8. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    Yeah, it's a dirty, nasty cash grab. They want users to pay $50/mo more for Unlimited data, which is ridiculous, as their broadband service is already overpriced in the first place. I moved and have a data cap on Cox now, I was used to not having a data cap with Comcast. For me, it's not a practical issue, since I live alone, but I could see how a family could easily blow through several TB in a month between game downloads, online backups, etc, etc. UHD video is 7GB/hour alone, so it can add up really, really fast. The FCC should have banned wireline data caps a long time ago.
     
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  9. giomania

    giomania New Member

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    Good to know the data rate for UHD video

    I know that HD video from Amazon is about 2 GB per hour per stream.

    I ran a test using PlayOn to record some shows on Amazon and then I checked the Comcast data usage before and after.

    I’m going to run a similar test with Netflix to see if there is any difference in the data rate per hour.

    I am gathering this data so I can maximize my data usage per month; screw them!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  10. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    Yeah, Netflix and Amazon Prime are about the same, 7GB/hour. If I were running up against a data cap like that I'm not sure that I would be streaming in UHD. UHD BD is one way to enjoy UHD without hitting the data cap, and the marginal difference between UHD and HD is definitely noticeable, but HD still looks great.
     
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  11. ashipkowski

    ashipkowski New Member

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    That high elsewhere? In middle-of-nowhere PA it's not as bad... $17.99/month plus the bleeping broadcast TV fee, and it's HD on my Bolt. I'm well out of any promo pricing, and there's a quirk where you don't have additional outlet fees under Limited Basic (though I just have a DTA for some redundancy). Local terrain/station distance is poor for OTA, unfortunately, though I know some folks do it.

    That stated, the increase in Internet fees isn't that much for going without cable TV here, so it's entirely conceivable that under the right circumstances ($42.95/month!?) I could give OTA more of a spin.
     
  12. chiguy50

    chiguy50 Active Member

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    As a consumer I am also opposed to data caps and I understand how they can impact on some families and active gamers. HOWEVER, my two-person household has never exceeded our 1TB cap despite frequent UHD streaming from Netflix and Amazon Prime Video (that is in addition to playing UHD Blu-ray discs, which is my preferred medium when available). I should also point out that Comcast forgives the first two times you exceed the data cap in a 12-month period. In other words, you are only subject the the overage fee the third time in that year, which should mitigate the impact for most consumers.

    We have Comcast's gigabit HSI service @ a discounted $70 p.m. (thank you, Google Fiber, for the competition;)), and we also added Xfinity Mobile to our service plan back in September and so far are very pleased with both the coverage and the cost. There are two service tiers: Unlimited data @ $45 per line and data "by the gig" @ $12 per gigabyte with no charge for the first 100 MB. Now, we are probably not typical cell phone users in that we do not use much data on our phones, but we have two lines on the "by the gig" tier and the total cost for both lines has been around $16 (including taxes) without exceeding the 1 GB monthly limit. Even if we have an atypical month and consume more than 1GB (but less than 2GB), we would still wind up paying less than $30 p.m. for both cell phone lines combined. Based on our previous experience with AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon, that seems like a very good deal (while it lasts:D).

    I should also add that, as a new cell phone user, I ported a line from another service (I used a secondary VoiP number from Ooma), which entitled me to a $150 pre-paid debit card, and my wife, who needed a new phone, ported a number from her previous cell phone service provider and purchased an iPhone 8 through Comcast, which garnered her a $300 pre-paid card. So we had $450 in incentives to move to Xfinity Mobile. In a sense, our first two years of cell phone service will be amortized if there are no significant price increases.
     
  13. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    It seems to depend largely on the state and franchise, as that tier is regulated in some markets, and not in others it seems.

    So you have Google Fiber in your area, but not at your actual address? Also, what the heck is the point of a gigabit connection when there is a 1TB cap on it, especially with the 42mbps upload?!? I can see the 1TB cap not being a practical issue for a lot of households, but with others, where they have a lot of gaming (Steam or XBOX downloads) and streaming, it can add up really quick. You start downloading 100GB games and consuming hours upon hours of streaming a day, and you're at a few TB/mo.

    XM is interesting, but it's more like prepaid than postpaid, in that the international roaming plans are crap, and there are more restrictions on the "Unlimited" than regular postpaid. It can work for some very light users. Personally, it also weirds me out that Comcast would be my internet and phone provider.
     
  14. unclehonkey

    unclehonkey Well-Known Member

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    I dont have Comcast but Mediacom and they are 32.95 for lifeline + 14.73 "broadcast fee"....luckily they do give you a HD DTA box and they dont charge for HD. Mainly because 98% of lifeline (they call it Local TV Plus) is still in clear QAM including HD.

    I would say maybe 15 years ago they did. I do know it was up to like 22.95 a few years ago before this whole "broadcast surcharge" took off

    Sadly for Mediacom it still pretty much is until the 3rd year because they discount it so much. When I moved here I got lifeline/internet for 39.98 a month for a year (internet alone was 39.99). The bundle promo went up $20 this year. If I got internet as stand alone it would be 79.99 now.
     
  15. chiguy50

    chiguy50 Active Member

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    Right. I had negotiated a Google Fiber access agreement for our 335-unit condominium property several years ago, but then Google hit some delays in their fiber build-out in our neighborhood. By the time they were ready to proceed with the site survey we had had a changeover in our HOA board of directors, and the new BOD declined to proceed with the project. It was at that point that I threw up my hands and just upgraded my Comcast Performance (60mbps) HSI to gigabit.

    As I said, different users might require more data, but for us the cap has not been an issue despite regular streaming of UHD content. Heavy on-line gamers are in a special category and might need to find a service that better meets their requirements and budget.

    We have only had the Xfinity Mobile service for under four months, but so far we are very pleased with both the coverage and the value. We haven't been concerned with international roaming, but we did take a two-week trip to California and experienced no problems there. I do not routinely use my cell phone (it is my first one:eek: and is my wife's old iPhone5), but my wife is a daily user and is often glued to the damn thing:rolleyes:.

    tl;dr: Comcast does a good job providing what we need at an affordable price.

    Well, we use Ooma Premier VoiP as our home phone, but Comcast is now our sole provider for video, internet, and wireless phone service. On the whole we are more than satisfied. My biggest complaint would probably be the quality of the video signal on certain channels (although, as I have stated several times in the past, it is nowhere near as bad as you keep claiming with your hyperbolic characterizations of "garbage.") I do have top-of-the-line A/V gear that tends to magnify any flaws in the signal; but I am also employing Darbee video processors that somewhat mitigate the lower PQ, and the result is at worst tolerable and at best very good. If that sounds like I am damning with faint praise, it is what it is.

    I am probably more conscientious at bargaining than most people, but I have found Comcast very accommodating in this regard. On our 10-year BSA, we negotiated a per-unit price of less than 50% retail plus a number of perks to include a $20,000 signing bonus and additional HD equipment. For my individual account, I always have a number of premium channels added (currently HBO, SHO, and Cinemax) and have never paid more than $1.00 p.m. for each after discounts.

    Other than a single CableCARD for my Roamio Pro, I do not use any Comcast equipment, but when I had their xFi gateways (Technicolor DPC3941T (DOCSIS 3.0) and CGM4140COM (DOCSIS 3.1)), I found them very capable and reliable. I replaced the latter with the Netgear CM1000/R7800 modem/router combination plus Actiontec ECB6200 MoCA Adapter.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019 at 3:34 PM
  16. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    Oh that sucks that you've got a bunch of idiots on your condo BOD. That sucks that you have a bulk deal, since no other providers will come in now.

    That's the problem. In most areas, there is no competition or it's 18 or 24mbps VDSL or something.

    Yeah, domestically it's Verizon, so the coverage is going to be great in most areas, they just don't have the same global data roaming packages that Verizon and AT&T have.

    It is total garbage, at least on sports, movies, or anything else that's not talking heads. Talking heads are OK, as they don't move much, so the encoders have an OK time with them. It doesn't matter how much you process it, it's not like MPEG-2 where you're just trying to get rid of the jiggies and jaggies, the detail is completely GONE, and there is no getting it back.

    Those bulk deals are so sleazy. They should be outlawed, as they effectively lock out other providers from competing. Why would AT&T or Google come in to build out fiber if everyone already has Comcrap forced down their throats? It's weird that those bulk deals are huge in some places, but not others. Those deals are almost unheard of in Connecticut, except for a couple of apartment complexes that had bulk deals with a local overbuilder near where I used to live.

    I just hate the idea of using their routers. There's probably nothing wrong with them, considering that the last 3-5 years of wireless technology has little to no benefit for most devices, and they are pretty up to date on the cable side of things. That being said, the idea of using a cable company's router sucks. Weirdly, Comcast really pushes their own equipment, whereas Cox doesn't. They advertise Panoramic Wi-Fi, but they don't really push it, they just sort of have it for people who want it. Unfortunately, most people have provider gateways now, since most people can't figure out how to set up their own modem/router or have Triple Play.
     
  17. javabird

    javabird Active Member

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    They don't seem to have anything equivalent to this any longer. They have some packages bundled with something called "Instant TV". I can't find any description.

    What is "Instant TV" ??
     
  18. schatham

    schatham Active Member

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    I've been using XM Mobile for a year and a half and it's been perfect. Verizon network, which is King where I live. It's basically free if you don't use much data.
     
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  19. chiguy50

    chiguy50 Active Member

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    Right, the first 100MB of data is free--as in zero dollars, zip, nada, nothing for cell phone service! That's a deal that is hard to beat; but 1GB at $12 is also quite a bargain IMHO.
     
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  20. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Xfinity Instant TV is their streaming-only (actually, managed IPTV) cable TV service. It's accessed through their app on Roku and mobile devices. (They've been saying for over a year now that the app will also become available for certain smart TVs and additional streaming boxes/sticks.) They're targeting Instant TV toward younger cord-cutters and cord-nevers. The base level of Instant TV has about the same channels and on-demand content as Limited Basic -- essentially just your locals -- but you don't pay extra to get them in HD and you have 20 hours of cloud DVR included. I think they only offer Instant TV, for now anyway, to folks who have Xfinity broadband. It costs $10 plus your local broadcast TV fee (so a total of $20 here) to add it to your broadband service. Of course, they also have various bundles available including both services with a reduced promo price for the first year or whatever. They also offer various add-on bundles of additional cable and premium channels for Instant TV.

    Wouldn't surprise me if eventually Comcast does away with Limited Basic TV (which runs via traditional QAM technology to old-school set-top boxes) and replaces it exclusively with Instant TV. (In fact, based on the OP, that may already be underway in some areas.) Comcast is supposed to be coming out with their own streaming box soon aimed at their broadband customers. This box will, of course, support Xfinity Instant TV (along with apps like Netflix, Prime Video, YouTube, etc.). I could see them renting it to Instant TV subscribers or maybe throwing it in for free to new Instant TV subs who commit to one year. If they do eventually phase out QAM TV, this box might be what they exchange in place of all those low-end non-X1 boxes still currently in use. Who knows.

    Yeah, it looks like a very good deal to me, particularly for those who aren't heavy data users. First 100MB are free, I think, then it's $12 per GB. Unlike Google Fi, though, they don't charge based on fractions of a GB. So if you use 1.1 GB, you're charged for 2 GB ($24). But Google Fi has a base charge of $20 for unlimited voice and text, whereas that's free for Xfinity broadband or TV subscribers (or $10/mo if you drop those services and only keep Xfinity Mobile). XM also gives you the option of unlimited data at $45. Data consumed through all those Xfinity wifi hotspots (which are pretty ubiquitous since Xfinity home internet gateways blast out a hotspot network by default) is always free. Hopefully they eventually allow folks to bring their own Verizon-compatible Android phones. Right now, you can only bring your own iPhone. Otherwise, you have to buy a new phone directly from them.
     
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