Help us Google you are only hope. Comcast says no promise prices “will go down or even increase less rapidly”

Arstechnica report that when Comcast announced its proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable, it said the merger would bring significant cost savings and efficiencies that would “ultimately benefit customers.”

But Comcast doesn’t expect these savings to bring price decreases, or even cause prices to rise less rapidly.

Previously Comcast executive vice president David L. Cohen writes that the allure of Google Fiber’s gigabit service doesn’t match the needs or capabilities of online Americans. Comcast thinks people do not want super fast internet access.

In February, Time Warner Cable said there’s no consumer demand for gigabit internet speeds and that it’s “in the business of delivering what consumers want.” Despite the comments, whenever it believes that its customers do want gigabit broadband, the company will likely be ready: last year, Time Warner offered $50 gift cards to Kansas City employees who would share “tips, rumors and rumblings” about Google Fiber during its debut build out.

Google is trying to bring fiber to the home to more cities in the USA which will bring gigabit speeds at affordable prices.

“Don’t be evil” is the informal corporate motto (or slogan) of Google.

Google at least tries and sometimes think about “Don’t be evil”.

Clearly Comcast and Time Warner are pure evil.

Michael Copps, an FCC commissioner from 2001 to 2011 who now leads the Media and Democracy Reform Initiative at Common Cause, said the merger is “so over the top that it ought to be dead on arrival at the FCC.”

Copps was the only commission member to vote against the Comcast/NBC Universal merger in 2011.

“I thought the Comcast/NBCU merger was beyond the pale,” Copps told Ars. “I was just stunned to see a couple years later they come back and they have $45 billion to pick up the second largest cable company.”

Comcast argued that the deal isn’t anti-competitive because Comcast and Time Warner don’t compete against each other for cable and Internet subscribers in any individual cities or towns, but Copps isn’t buying that argument.

“I think we need to look at it in the context of the one big media ecosystem we have in this country, which is broadband, broadcast, old media, and new media, and you have one player, one power that you’re according massive influence and gatekeeping control, and that’s just plain bad for consumers and just plain bad for democracy,” he said

More Background

If the Netflix video you watch via a Comcast connection seems slow and unreliable, you are not alone.

Netflix’s latest ISP speed report is out shows Comcast and Verizon FiOS have dropped quite a bit in the last four months, while Google Fiber is once again at the top of the heap. Neither Comcast nor Verizon have slumped to DSL speeds, but given Comcast’s history with net neutrality and Verizon ownership of Redbox, some might call their decreased data rates into question.

Minimum speeds needed

Skype (source: Skype Support)

For voice calls: 0.1 mbps download / 0.1 mbps upload
For video calls: 0.5 mbps download / 0.5 mbps upload
For HD video calls: 1.5 mbps download / 1.5 mbps upload

Important note: these connection speed requirements include downloading and uploading at the same time. Since Speedtest.net tests download and upload separately for accuracy, your results will need to be higher than the the numbers provided above. For example, your upload speed may be 2 mbps in the Speedtest.net result, but may go down to 1 mbps while your connection is downloading something.

Netflix (source: Netflix Help)

Basic-quality video: 1.5 mbps download
High-quality video: 3.0 mbps download

YouTube (source: YouTube Help)

Recommended: at least 0.5 mbps download

YouTube offers several quality levels for videos that you can use. The lower-numbers (360p) indicate that the video is smaller and uses less bandwidth, but also has less detailed. The more detailed the video (480p, 720p), the more bandwidth it takes to stream. Choose the highest video quality that allows you to stream without repeated stops and starts.

Hulu (source: Hulu Help)

Recommended: at least 1.0 mbps

Hulu also offers several different quality levels for different connection speeds. Using the gear icon under videos, you can tell Hulu to “Auto-select the best quality for my bandwidth (recommended)”.

Online Video Games

Recommended: a low ping (less than 100ms)

For playing video games online, download and upload don’t matter as much as ping, which measures how responsive your connection is. The lower ping to servers and other players, the lower the “lag” will be in your game. To lower ping, you can take steps like connecting your computer to the router using ethernet instead of Wi-Fi, and not downloading/uploading files while playing games.

Spotify (source: Spotify FAQ)

Recommended: 0.25 mbps

Netflix speed test versus Ookla Net Index

The Netflix ISP Speed Index is based on data from the more than 36 million Netflix members who view over 1 billion hours of TV shows and movies streaming from Netflix per month.

Peering is a very important part of the index, and not the overall internet performance of an ISP.

No matter which metrics or speed tests are used Google Fiber comes out on top.

Finding fastest ISP

If you’ve ever wanted to test your Internet connection’s speed, you probably used Ookla’s popular Speedtest.net. Ookla’s Net Index takes all the data from Speedtest.net and organizes it, making it easy to browse.

Click the “Go to my location” link and you’ll be taken to a page listing the ISPs that operate in your area. You can also just look up a specific city. The ISPs are ranked based on the recent Speedtest.net download speed results of their subscribers, so you can see which ISPs are actually the fastest.

Speed tests by country

Speed tests by state

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