Comcast won’t enforce data limits for the Northeast until 2023 at the earliest

Comcast subscribers in the Northeast US just got another data cap deferral, and it could be stuck. According to Light Reading and The Verge, a Comcast spokesperson said the cable giant now had “no plans” to enforce internet data caps in the region by 2022. State Representative Andy Vargas even claimed the strategy could be held indefinitely — he understood that at no point was Comcast “going to reintroduce the ceiling.”

The telecom first said in November 2020 that it would expand its 1.2TB cap enforcement to the Northeast in 2021, but delayed the move by a year in February 2021. The extra time was ostensibly to help customers “get familiar” with caps, but many have attributed the decision to curbing politicians who were angry. Comcast tried to curb internet use (or charge extra) during a pandemic, when many have no choice but to work from home.

This won’t help subscribers who still have to live with limits in other states. However, it will help residents of the Northeast breathe easier and can keep their costs down if they don’t want to pay for surpluses or unlimited data. The additional delay also casts doubt on the need for caps in the first place. If Comcast doesn’t impose limits in many states for two years and rivals like AT&T can make even wider gestures, why do the limits exist? Comcast’s move doesn’t rule out enforcement in 2023 or later, but the company may have a hard time justifying the resurgence after waiting so long.

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