TWC and Comcast merger means relatively little for US broadband competition

April 04, 2014  | Subscribers Only

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The fact that two major operators such as Time Warner Cable and Comcast could merge with minimal impact on competition at the local level is a clear indication of the lack of rivalry between many providers in the US – and one of the key reasons the FCC will have to keep a close eye on the issue of net neutrality. The nature of settlement-free peering is in many ways a more pressing issue however, as the larger an ISP becomes the more power it is able to exert in requiring payment for network interconnect.

Highlights:

  • Comcast’s acquisition of Time Warner Cable will create an entity controlling roughly a third of the US fixed-line broadband business.
  • Across most of the largest metropolitan statistical areas in the US, Comcast and Time Warner Cable have minimal overbuild.
  • The merger of the two operators would therefore have little impact on the average consumer’s choice in ISPs.
  • Concerns around net neutrality and the strength of the merged entity in the peering/interconnect arena.

In this report:

  • Comcast/Time Warner Cable network overlap
  • Implications of merger for net neutrality
  • Potential measures to address lack of competition in US broadband market

List of tables and charts:

  • Comcast and TWC homes passed by Metro Area
  • Coverage maps of New York and Kansas City
  • Average broadband revenue per subscriber – US, UK

Number of pages: 6

Number of charts and tables: 3

Geography
USA
Organization
Comcast Time Warner Cable
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