Comcast rolls out ‘Now’ prepaid phone and internet plans

Comcast rolls out ‘Now’ prepaid phone and internet plans
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Comcast announced today that it’s expanding its “Now” branding to include two prepaid services: Now Internet and Now Mobile. Of the two, the mobile plan appears to be genuinely new, as it’s a prepaid cellular option that offers unlimited 5G data, talk, and text for $25 a month per line. The mobile plan also has free access to the company’s Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots.

That seems like a better deal than Xfinity’s current postpaid mobile plans, which include a $40 per month, per line unlimited plan or a “By-the-Gig” plan at $20 per gigabyte, non-prorated, the latter of which gets pricy fast.

When asked about any data caps for the plans, Comcast representative Joel Shadle told The Verge via email that there are “no caps for Internet. NOW Mobile speeds will be slowed during times of congestion after 20GB.” Comcast’s Now plans aren’t bundled, so customers signing up for more than one “will be charged individually for each service,” Shadle said. The plan’s cellular service will live on Xfinity’s 5G network, which is to say, it uses Verizon’s 5G infrastructure.

Comcast’s Xfinity Now internet plans look similar to its existing prepaid internet offering, but it’s adding a cheaper option. The new Now plans will be $30 for a 100Mbps plan or $45 for 200Mbps. The plans include an Xfinity modem / router combo, and Comcast says there’s no data cap for either.

The company says these plans give “another option” for people enrolled in the Affordable Connectivity Program, the federal government’s internet subsidy for low-income families that’s about to run out of money, with no new funding on the horizon.

The company also says that its Xfinity prepaid internet, which relies on a wired connection, is more reliable than 5G fixed wireless plans, which can be a crapshoot. For example, T-Mobile says its 5G internet service averages between 75Mbps and 245Mbps. Whether you hit the high end of that range or not, you’re still paying $50 per month (or $55 per month if you’re not on autopay).

Comcast says the new Now internet and mobile plans are already being trialed in three cities and will roll out “across all Comcast service areas” over the next few weeks.

Disclosure: Comcast is an investor in Vox Media, The Verge’s parent company.

Correction April 17th, 1:41PM ET: A previous version of this story said Comcast’s “By-the-Gig” plans are prepaid. They are postpaid. That’s been corrected and we regret the error. We also added more information on the existing postpaid plans, and updated the paragraph about potential data caps to include a direct quote from Shadle.


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