Comcast's 50 Mbps service comes to OR, WA next month

Comcast subscribers from the Pacific Northwest will be the next group of lucky folks to get access to Comcast's wideband services, which bring up the top speed to 50 Mbps.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn

Starting next month, subscribers of Comcast's cable Internet service in Oregon and southwestern Washington state will be getting their connections switched over to "wideband." The upgraded service, which was announced late last month doubles the speed of residential and business connections as well as offering two faster, more expensive plans that bring the maximum download speed to 22 and 50 Mbps respectively.

Wideband is currently available in Minneapolis-Saint Paul, and parts of New England, New Jersey, and Philadelphia. According my press contact, Comcast plans to get it in "close to 10 million homes and businesses in the next couple of months," which is a good percentage given the company's overall customer base of 14.7 million subscribers.

The technology behind wideband, which is formally known as DOCSIS 3.0 brings with it the capability to hit speeds in excess of 300 Mbps, is six times faster than what Comcast is currently offering (or even capable of handling with its current network infrastructure). As mentioned before, this increase in download speed has not made a difference in Comcast's bandwidth use restriction, which requires users to stay within 250 GB of downloads per month or face a one-year suspension upon the second offense.