Cable Providers Are Shaking Up the Wireless Market:
What Does This Mean for Consumers?

man playing video game on cell phone

First, it was television. Next came internet and home phone service. And now: you can get wireless mobile service from your cable provider? 

That’s right. Cable providers – including Comcast, Cox, and Charter (and Mediacom soon!) – are now offering consumers the ability to subscribe to a wireless plan as part of their bundle of TV and internet service or just add a wireless plan separately.

And Americans are taking them up on their offer, with millions of consumers signing up for these competitive mobile service plans. Here’s what you need to know about this expanded offering and what it could mean for you.

How Can Cable Providers Offer Wireless Mobile Plans?

Instead of building their own mobile networks and constructing new cellular towers across the country, cable operators are leasing excess capacity from existing mobile networks to offer their own branded wireless service. In addition, to supplement their wireless service and offload mobile traffic, cable providers are tapping into their large number of public Wi-Fi hotspots. 

This means that whenever a mobile customer is within a Wi-Fi hotspot area, their phone will automatically switch from the mobile network to the cable provider’s Wi-Fi network. Using Wi-Fi instead of a mobile network should typically result in a boost in speed, and if you aren’t on an unlimited data plan, it will help reduce your data charges.

Choice, Competition, Flexibility, and Convenience

So why is this expanded offering good news for consumers? And why are so many making the switch to wireless mobile plans offered by their cable providers? 

It mainly comes down to increased competition and more choices including great service plan flexibility. In fact, the plans offered by cable providers allow customers the option to pay as they go and change their plan at any time. 

Moreover, if you’re a Comcast, Charter and Cox subscriber, all this means that it is now possible to bundle all your services – including TV, broadband, home phone, and mobile service – into one monthly bill. 

Continuing to Keep a Lid on Prices

As cable providers continue their rapid growth into the wireless mobile space, customers can expect to see the benefits to their bottom line. This is especially good news as inflation remains high, increasing costs for most goods and services.  Fortunately, home broadband is one service that continues to defy this high rate of inflation. To find out how cable providers have been able to keep broadband prices steady , read our related article here.