AT&T Broadband is following merger partner Comcast Corp.'s lead in
introducing a new higher-speed cable-modem tier, and the MSO is hinting that it
may add a lower-data-rate tier sometime in the near future.
Englewood, Colo.-based AT&T Broadband's new 'UltraLink' service --
offering up to 3 megabits per second downstream and 384 kilobits per second
upstream -- is now available in Dallas; Denver; Salt Lake City; the San
Francisco Bay area; Seattle; St. Paul, Minn.; and communities in the MSO's
Michigan and Rocky Mountain markets.
The cost is $79.99 per month for customers who own their modems and $82.99
for those who lease modems.
Plans are to launch the service later this summer in Atlanta; Florida;
Pittsburgh; Portland, Ore.; Richmond, Va.; and Southern California.
The Chicago, central California and Northeast markets will roll out UltraLink
later this year. The delay for the latter two markets primarily has to do with
the migration of former MediaOne Group Inc. cable-system customers over to
AT&T Broadband's cable-modem network, according to spokeswoman Sarah Eder.
Other upgrade issues are a factor in the Chicago rollout.
The MSO's original 1.5-mbps down, 256-kbps up offering is priced at $42.95
monthly for customers owning modems and $45.95 for those leasing.
Offering a higher data speed is designed to give customers even more options,
according to AT&T Broadband vice president of Internet services Karl
'It serves the higher-bandwidth needs of consumers who have set up home
networks; send or receive large files, such as when downloading software; or
enjoy other bandwidth-intensive applications,' he said in a release.
And later this year, there is a plan afoot to test a lower-data-rate offering
aimed at cost-conscious dial-up customers looking to upgrade to broadband.
AT&T Broadband has not yet determined a price point or data rate for that
offering, according to Eder.