Cablevision Systems Corp. (CVC) increased the speed at which its subscribers can connect to the Internet in an effort to protect its customer base.
The Bethpage, N.Y., cable provider said in a press release Wednesday that its Optimum Online customers will be able to download information off the Internet at 15 megabits a second, up from a prior speed of 10 Mbps. The upload speed also doubled to 2 Mbps. In addition, Cablevision unveiled a premium 30 Mbps offering called Optimum Online Boost.
In the ongoing battle for high-speed Internet customers, the cable providers are taking a different tact than the telephone companies. Whereas the Bells have aggressively slashed the prices of their digital subscriber line service - AT&T Inc. (T) has gone as low as $13 a month - the cable companies have been more resistant to price moves and have instead opted for increased speeds.
Cablevision's Optimum Online service costs between $45 and $50 a month, although there is a $30 introductory offer. Optimum Online Boost costs an additional $9 to $15, depending on what other services are bundled along with Internet access.
The cable and telephone companies have been increasingly encroaching in each others' territory, with the cable companies offering a Web-based phone service and the phone companies investing in a rival video service.