Comcast’s Unlimited WiFi Days Could Soon Be Over – CMCSA

Comcast Executive VP David Cohen said at a conference this week that America’s largest cable company is seriously considering imposing monthly usage limits for all of its Internet customers.

“I would predict that in five years Comcast at least would have a usage-based billing model rolled out across its footprint,” Cohen said during a Wednesday appearance at a Thomson Reuters event.

That means Comcast (CMCSA) customers could get charged for going over their data limits. Cohen said the company would aim to set the limit at a level where “the vast majority of our customers” wouldn’t be affected.

“I don’t think we will want to be in a model where it is fully variablized and 80 percent of our customers are implicated by usage-based billing and are all buying different packets of usage,” he said, speculating that the limit might be set at 350GB or 500GB per month.

This seems to be a contradiction from Cohen’s comments made in May 2012 regarding Comcast ‘s decision to suspend its 250GB per month data caps, where he was quoted as saying that customers don’t have to worry about a limit on how much data they use each month. Back then he stated : “The headline today should be ‘There isn’t a cap anymore. We’re out of the cap business.”

Cohen however, is now saying that his remarks have been “picked up out of context and misinterpreted in a number of places”. In a blog post on Thursday he said that Comcast currently has “no plans to announce a new data usage policy.” We have “no interest in adopting any plans that our customers find unreasonable or disruptive to their Internet experience,” he wrote.

Shares of Comcast Corporation closed at $50.19 on Friday.

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