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Comcast Getting Amped Up?

Jeff Baumgartner

11:20 AM -- DSL Reports has it that Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is cooking up a new "Extreme 105" tier that will cap speeds at 105 Mbit/s downstream and 10 Mbit/s upstream.

Comcast isn't commenting, but a Comcast customer in Pennsylvania posted a monthly bill on the blog's forum that mentions the coming of the new tier. And it apparently won't be cheap, either -- $199.95 per month, plus a $250 installation fee.

Word that Comcast may launch that tier (as early as June 1) doesn’t come as a surprise to some folks who were at The Cable Show earlier this month. Prior to the show, rumors circulated that Comcast chief Brian Roberts would tout the coming of the new tier on cable's show stage. But that didn't materialize. Instead, Roberts spent his time talking up the "Xfinity Remote," a Web app that can run on the iPad. (See To Xfinity... & Beyond!)

The new Docsis 3.0 tier would be Comcast's fastest for residential services, but it wouldn't be the fastest in the nation. That honor still belongs to Suddenlink Communications , which has recently broadened the availability of an offering that offers downstream speeds of 107 Mbit/s. (See Suddenlink Unleashes 107-Meg Wideband Tier and Suddenlink Widens 107-Meg Reach .)

Comcast already offers a 100-Meg tier in Minneapolis and is expected to extend that offer to other markets soon, as it introduces its Xfinity brand to more areas. DSL Reports says the MSO could have such speeds available in 20 percent of its footprint by year's end. Comcast has more than 83 percent of its footprint wired for wideband and should have the upgrade complete across the board later this year. (See Cable MSOs Seeing the IP Video Light .)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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