Cable giant Comcast offers cellular plans on Verizon network

For instance, 5GB on the Verizon network with Walmart's Total Wireless costs $35/month, less than Comcast is charging. It will employ Comcast's 16 million Wi-Fi hotspots within its footprint, allowing customers to automatically switch onto Wi-Fi from 4G LTE.

Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks in late 2011 sold spectrum to Verizon for $3.6 billion.

Comcast connects millions of people to cable and Internet.

At launch, that phone will be an iPhone, or top phones from Samsung or LG.

It did not say how much it has invested in Xfinity Mobile or what kind of return it expects. However, one analyst asked Comcast executives how well they could manage the experience given today's hand-off between LTE and Wi-Fi is often "shitty" and hurts the brand.

For Comcast, Xfinity Mobile primarily serves as another way to squeeze value out of its existing customers.

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"Comcast will likely sell this service to up to 10% of its base in the next couple of years, which will be a nice boost to its revenues and profits, but will make only a tiny dent in the overall USA wireless market - 10% penetration of its broadband base would be just 2.5 million customers, which is less than the number of new customers the big four carriers added last quarter alone", Dawson wrote. Many subscribers will save money, especially if they don't use a lot of data.

Comcast wireless pricing will start at $45 per line for unlimited service for customers who have signed up for the company's Best Xfinity package.

All of this is done through auto-pay billing. With Xfinity Mobile, customers only pay for the gigabytes they use, with the flexibility to easily switch back-and-forth between data options using the Xfinity Mobile app at no cost. A Comcast phone plan could therefore cost just $12 a month for 1GB of data and unlimited talking and texting. Comcast says it will reduce speeds after you use more than 20GB of mobile data. The company went to disgusting lengths to kill Google Fiber, falsely advertised its services as "America's fastest internet", and got dealt a record-breaking fine from the FCC for shady billing practices.

"The worst-case scenario is you have video going over mobile devices and cable does not play a role in that", Yong said. There's also no WiFi calling support, which other networks use for clearer audio. There's also 24/7 customer support via phone and text message.

Comcast's main goal is to give its current customers the ultimate bundle deal, covering all of their TV, internet and phone needs. That practice, known as "zero-rating", has been used by various other mobile carriers in recent years, and has raised concerns from net-neutrality advocates along the way. It will initially be available only to subscribers who have Xfinity broadband service. We'll have to wait and see. After all, Comcast had effectively said before this service is meant to help retain and boost its cable subscriptions.

  • Regina Walsh