Those statements that Comcast's David Cohen made about possible nationwide data caps within the next five years? He'd like you to forget them, please. As he explains in a follow-up statement, the company has "no plans to announce" such a policy. The company doesn't want to implement plans that hurt your internet experience, he says, arguing that reports took what he said "out of context." With that said, it's clear that Cohen has a narrow definition of what a data cap is. He claims that the company has no caps whatsoever despite running trials where customers are charged extra for usage beyond a bandwidth limit -- at last check, that's still a cap.
The executive is quick to note that these trials aren't necessarily a sign of things to come. If they are, however, you may have to pay extra to get unfettered service; Cohen notes that the company is "looking at" adding unlimited plans to the trials. It's unclear just what those would entail, although the overage-based model from the trials suggests that you'd pay a premium over normal offerings. That's in sharp contrast to Comcast's acquisition target Time Warner Cable, which offers you a discount if you accept a cap. It's entirely possible that Comcast will forego usage-based pricing, particularly if it wants to please regulators worried about attempts to stifle online video, but it's obvious that the business model is at least under serious consideration.
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