Mediacom Preps 100-Meg D3

5:45 PM -- Mediacom Communications Corp. has about half its footprint prepped for Docsis 3.0 and intends to launch a 100-Mbit/s (downstream) tier in two markets starting next month.

Mediacom expects to launch wideband modem services in 11 markets total in December, with nine starting with a 50-meg tier, and the balance offering 100-meg services, Mediacom EVP of operations John Pascarelli noted on this morning's third-quarter earnings call.

"Right now we don't want to rush and throw 100-meg… throughout the markets," Pascarelli said. "With 50, that is still by far the significantly fastest service available in these markets."

He didn't reveal those markets or any anticipated pricing, but Mediacom has been signaling its intentions to launch Docsis 3.0 for several months. In May, the company said it planned to be D3-ready in half its homes by the end of this year. (See Mediacom Gets Serious About Wideband.)

Although Mediacom will have 50 percent of its plant ready for D3 this year, 25 percent will start offering wideband services this year, with the other quarter poised for additional service rollouts in 2010, Pascarelli said.

Mediacom's primary telco competitor is Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) -- with some pockets of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) FiOS and AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) U-verse competition. It ended the third quarter with 765,000 high-speed data subs, adding 11,000 in the period.

Pascarelli also noted that Mediacom is deploying Digital Terminal Adapter (DTA) devices "in all markets" as it looks to reclaim analog spectrum. Mediacom hasn't announced any DTA suppliers, but Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. is believed to be among them. (See Huawei Breaks US Set-Top Seal .)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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