Comcast Rolls Out Hybrid DOCSIS 3.1 Gigabit Fiber Internet Service In Philly

Let the confetti fly, Comcast has served up a 1Gbps Internet connection to a single home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania! Okay, maybe that isn't cause for balloons and streamers, though it's a notable achievement because the connection is the first to use a DOCSIS 3.1 modem on a customer-facing network.

The significant of using a DOCSIS 3.1 modem in a customer's home is that it paves the way for 1Gbps Internet on Comcast's existing network infrastructure. It's not like competing 1Gbps (and higher) broadband roll outs that require extensive network upgrades -- all Comcast needed in this case was a new modem, a software upgrade, and a "few good engineers."


"The beauty of DOCSIS 3.1 is that it is backwards compatible, so no digging up streets or backyards. This technology, when combined with the extensive upgrades we have already completed on our advanced Hybrid Fiber-Coaxial network, will provide more gigabit choices for our customers," Comcast says.

Moving out of the laboratory and into the real-world is a significant development, as it means Comcast is one step closer to offering 1Gbps residential service to its existing customers. In addition to the single home in Philly, Comcast is trialing DOCSIS 3.1 technology in other locations in Philadelphia, as well as Northern California and Atlanta, Georgia.

Comcast already offers 2Gbps Internet service, though there are caveats. It's only available in select markets -- customers have to live within a third of a mile of its fiber network -- and it costs $300 per month. On top of that, fees of up to $500 for installation and up to $500 for activation may apply. Ouch!