Cox Boosts Bandwidth Caps

Cox Communications has increased the maximum data-usage limits for broadband customers, including more than doubling the limit for its popular Preferred package to 200 Gigabytes per month.

"We periodically review these bandwidth allowances to ensure customers have access to the bandwidth they need," Cox spokesman David Deliman said.

On Tuesday, Cox updated the section of its site that spells out the new cap levels.  Deliman noted that while Cox previously specified different bandwidth allowances for downloads and uploads, the operator has combined those into single caps representing all bandwidth used.

Cox's new limits for each package are: Economy, 30 Gbytes; Value, 50 Gbytes; Preferred, 200 Gbytes; Premier, 250 Gbytes; and Ultimate, the 50-Mbps downstream service available only in certain markets, at 400 Gbytes. (In some markets, the Economy tier is now called "Starter" and the Value package is now called "Essential.")

To reach the 250-Gbyte ceiling, for example, a subscriber would have to send the equivalent of 50 million e-mails or download 62,500 songs.

Previously, Cox's caps were: Economy, 3 Gbytes down / 1 Gbyte up; Value, 4 Gbytes / 1 Gbyte; Preferred, 40 Gbytes / 15 Gbytes; Premier, 60 Gbytes / 15 Gbytes; and Ultimate, 300 Gbytes / 100 Gbytes.

Other cable providers have instituted similar caps. Comcast limits all broadband users to 250 Gbytes per month  and Charter Communications has set caps of 250 Gbytes for tiers between 15 and 25 Mbps and 100 Gbytes for tiers of 15 Mbps or less.

Cox's bandwidth-cap increases were first reported Wednesday by

According to the company, the Cox Digital Telephone service does not count toward monthly bandwidth allowances.