Overall: 2 ¾ Stars
It should come as no surprise that Comcast's overall score was a slightly above average 2 3/4 (2.74) stars out of five. Despite more-than-respectable marks in performance and reliability, our readers could not forgive unsatisfactory pricing and support, which our surveyed Comcast users considered the two most important factors when choosing an ISP. Dropping the ball in two out of four categories obviously hurts the overall average.
Judging by our survey, it seems that one of the largest issues facing Comcast is its perceived unapologetic attitude toward pricing policies and support. Offering bundled Internet packages with term lengths longer than the promotion rate is a sneaky thing to do (even though it's all in the fine print), and facing no competition in certain regions makes some users feel as though there's no choice but to pay higher prices.
Comcast's high-speed Xfinity Internet services received a very typical response in our reader survey, with participants giving almost identical testimony. According to many of our readers, the company's pricing and support are unsatisfactory, and despite its strong showing in performance and reliability, customers are less-than-thrilled with the two factors they consider most important. As a result, the company's overall score is low.
Comcast's strengths lie in the very technology that brought it to the table: cable Internet service, which offers higher speeds than competing DSL providers. Readers seemed to think that Comcast's high speed and reliability weren't good trade-offs for its poorly structured pricing and customer support. Meanwhile, many who gave the ISP a higher-than-average score had the same issues as those who rated Comcast lower. The difference seems to be that the readers who gave Comcast a higher rating seemed complacent about its negatives, accepting them as "the cost of doing business."
Here's a full rundown of our survey results for Comcast. Each category is labeled from one to four, with one being most important and four being the least when deciding on an ISP, according to the surveyed readers:
|Price (2)||Performance (4)||Reliability (3)||Support (1)||Overall|
|★★ Stars (2.11)||★★★½ Stars (3.53)||★★★¼ Stars (3.34)||★★ Stars (2.13)||★★¾ Stars (2.74)|
Thank you, readers, for participating in our survey, and for following along so far. Let us know what you think by leaving your comments below. Next time, we'll examine Comcast's almost-partner in the cable Internet industry, with a sizable consumer base and fast access speeds: Time Warner Cable.
Derek Forrest is an Associate Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware and Tom's IT Pro.