Comcast Close To Announcing 305-Meg Tier: Source

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Comcast is "very close" to announcing a 305 Megabit per second downstream Internet service -- which would beat Verizon's 300-Meg FiOS Quantum service by a nose -- a source familiar with the MSO's plans confirmed.

The country's largest cable operator is prepping the ultra-fast broadband service in order to take the mantle from Verizon as providing the fastest nationwide residential Internet, DSLReports.com reported last week, citing anonymous sources.

Sources did not provide information on pricing, timing or specific geographic availability, although the 305-Mbps tier is expected to be first introduced in markets where Comcast competes with FiOS, such as the greater Philadelphia regions.

Last month, Verizon launched FiOS Quantum with a top speed of 300 Mbps in many markets, and it also hiked pricing and connection speeds for most existing customers.

Comcast in 2011 announced its 105-Mbps Xfinity Internet service, delivered via DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem technology, was availlable to the 40 million homes in its footprint.

Today, the FiOS 300-Meg and Comcast's forthcoming 305-Meg services are largely about staking marketing claims.

The two companies recently have tangled over advertising. Last month, following a complaint by Verizon, the Council of Better Business Bureaus' National Advertising Division ruled that Comcast should stop making the unqualified claim that its Xfinity Internet service is the "fastest in the nation."

However, NAD found that Comcast would be able to back up a claim that it is one of the three fastest ISPs in the nation, according to a 2011 PC Magazine study, or claim that it is the fastest Internet option for most consumers in its service areas where Verizon's FiOS service is not available.

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