Comcast cable customers boost broadband use by 11% in 2021
Downstream traffic on Comcast’s broadband network in the US is still growing, by 11% over 2020, the company announced
Downstream traffic on Comcast’s broadband network in the US is still growing, by 11% over 2020, the company announced.
That follows what the company calls “historic peaks in 2020”. Upstream traffic also grew in 2021, but by a more modest 5%, said the company.
Charlie Herrin, president of technology, product, experience at Comcast Cable, said: “The outstanding performance of the network throughout this time is a testament to our commitment to strategic investment, unceasing innovation, and the incredible talent and dedication of our technology teams across the country.”
Comcast, which also owns Sky in the UK, is the biggest cable TV operator in the US, with an estimated 19.3 million connected households.
In January 2022 it announced plans to upgrade its customers to 10Gbps technology, after testing a prototype modem on a single chip.
This week’s data show more modest rises than what Comcast calls “the historic spikes of 2020 – when peak downstream traffic rose 38% and upstream traffic grew 56%”. But the company notes that traffic is still rising.
“Over the past two years, our network has been a powerful and reliable pillar for our customers as they’ve navigated dramatic changes in how we live, learn, play and work,” said Herrin.
As might be expected for customers who are mainly consumers, video streaming made up more than two-thirds of the traffic on Comcast’s network – 71% of the total.
Comcast homes are also gamers, with online gaming accounting for 11%. Web browsing was just 9% of traffic.
Daily peak times shifted toward pre-pandemic norms throughout the year, says the company: peak upstream traffic times were 10:00 in January, 15:00 in June, and 22:00 in December.
Elad Nafshi, EVP and chief network officer at Comcast Cable, said: “Network investment is important, but the network architects and software engineers across Comcast are also innovating at the speed of software. Our colleagues leading these innovations are creating the future for our customers.”