DOCSIS 3.0 to cover 65% of Comcast network this year

Despite the troubled economy, Comcast is pushing ahead with its DOCSIS 3.0 deployment plan. The company has announced a plan to spread the new, faster cable technology to 65% of its service area by the end of this year—that's a total of 30 million homes and businesses who should get access to speeds of up to 50Mbps.

The cable provider says it's already made quite a lot of progress since announcing its first 50Mbps trials back in April 2008, too. Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Comcast also confirmed it has now introduced these new faster Internet speeds across 30% of its footprint, or more than 15 million homes and businesses . . . Comcast's superfast speeds have already begun launching in ten major markets, including the Twin Cities, the Boston Metropolitan region and parts of Southern New Hampshire, the Philadelphia Metropolitan area, parts of New Jersey, Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Ft. Wayne, Portland and Seattle. Comcast will launch additional new markets in the weeks and months ahead.

With DOCSIS 3.0, which Comcast nicknames "wideband," customers can choose from two new residential tiers: Extreme 50, with 50Mbps downstream and 10Mbps upstream for $140 a month, and Ultra, with 22Mbps down and 5Mbps up for 63 bucks a month.

As for folks with the existing Performance and Performance Plus services, they should see their top download and upload speeds doubled when DOCSIS 3.0 arrives in their area. That means 12Mbps/2Mbps for the Performance tier and 16Mbps/2Mbps for Performance Plus.

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