Comcast Sets Bandwidth Cap for Customers

Internet provider Comcast has announced that it will limit residential cable internet bandwidth to 250GB per month starting October 1st.

The plan, according to The Channel Wire and SFGate, does not specify a charge for going over that 250GB cap, but will have Comcast notifing customers of overages and terminating the accounts of repeat offenders.

Comcast claims that median high-speed internet use in the United States is 2 to 3GB per month, making the 250GB limit generous in most cases, but the cap looms over gamers who consume increasing amounts of bandwidth to use digital distribution services ranging from Valve's Steam, to iTunes, Netflix, Xbox Live, and the PlayStation Network.

For example, a single high-definition movie download from the Xbox Live Marketplace typically weighs around 4.5GB. Die-hard multiplayer gamers, including World of Warcraft players, need not worry: the bandwidth used by online games is far below Comcast's 250GB limit.

Gamers on other internet providers, however, may have cause for concern. Some sense that Comcast sets a dangerous precedent with the possibility from here forward that Comcast may gradually lower that cap. Other large cable providers, including Time Warner and Cox Communications, are currently testing bandwidth caps as low as 5GB.