If you live in one of the last states where Comcast hasn’t rolled out its data caps, you’re getting another reprieve: the company has announced that it’s now pushing back the rollout to some time in 2022 (via Ars Technica). The 1.2TB data caps, which incur extra charges if users go over them, were originally slated to roll out in March but were then delayed until July. Comcast hasn’t said specifically when next year the rollout would occur.
These caps will be familiar if you don’t live in Comcast’s Northeast region, which consists of Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Vermont, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia, (along with parts of North Carolina and Ohio). Most of Comcast’s customers have dealt with them for years, and that won’t be changing. Even though the new rollout is delayed, Comcast told Ars Technica that its customers in 27 other states wouldn’t be getting a break from the caps and overage fees.
The ISP’s reasoning for the delay, according to the announcement, is that the company realizes that the “data plan was new for [its] customers in the Northeast,” and it wanted to “provid[e] them with more time to become familiar with the new plan.” This isn’t a courtesy the company extended to other states when it expanded the data caps to them (apart from the one or two “free” overage months). But to be fair, there also wasn’t a global pandemic going on during those rollouts.
However, it seems obvious that Comcast doesn’t need to implement data caps in order to provide service — otherwise, it wouldn’t be able to keep delaying the rollout, nor would it have been able to keep the region data-cap free for years. It’s unclear whether the company will use the added delay to reconsider its planned rollout, despite the lack of popularity of the plan with both customers and lawmakers.