Comcast goes into U.S. wireless business with unlimited data plans | Reuters

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By Anjali Athavaley
| NEW YORK

NEW YORK Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O) said on Thursday it is launching a new wireless service with an unlimited data plan, making it the first major U.S. cable provider to enter into the highly competitive wireless market, as it faces pressure in its core business.

Unlimited data, talk and text will be available by mid-year for $65 per line for up to five lines, or $45 per line for customers with Comcast’s top X1 packages, which bundle together TV, internet and phone services. Alternatively, customers can opt to pay $12 per gigabyte each month.

In recent months, the four major U.S. wireless carriers – Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N), AT&T Inc (T.N), T-Mobile US Inc (TMUS.O) and Sprint Corp (S.N) – have offered unlimited data plans ranging from $50 a month for a single line to $90 a month. [nL1N1FY1FA]

The move into the wireless business by the U.S. No. 1 cable provider shows how cable companies are looking to add more services to their offerings with the hope of reducing customer churn, or attrition, as younger viewers back away from high-priced subscriptions in favor of cheaper options, such as “cutting the cord” entirely and watching online.

Rival cable provider Charter Communications Inc (CHTR.O) is also planning to launch a wireless service in 2018.

Details released on Thursday offer a glimpse of how Comcast plans to make inroads in an oversaturated market for U.S. wireless service that is increasingly price-driven.

“We believe we have very competitive unlimited plans,” said Greg Butz, president of Comcast’s mobile business, adding that the company was able to pass savings it generated by…

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