A memo went out last week to Comcast and TWC employees announcing the new management structure after the merger is complete. I think it hit the press the same day.Rumor has it that the deal will be complete by the end of Q1. Despite some emerging critics of the acquisition, Comcast seems to know their way around Washington, and this internal announcement indicates extreme confidence.
To cable subscribers and cord cutters this merger will probably have little impact, at least in the beginning. Network infrastructure as well as management will be consolidated very slowly. Comcast will want to avoid the fiasco that occurred when Adelphia Cable was absorbed resulting in network outages and sent customers fleeing to DIRECTV.
The “good news” is that TWC and Comcast were never direct competitors. For my market the number of pay TV providers will remain at four: Comcast, AT&T U-verse, DIRECTV and Dish. That’s why I have more of a problem with the AT&T DIRECTV deal – it really does eliminate competition.
After the Comcast TWC deal is complete Comcast will control roughly 30% of the pay TV market. But who cares really? What worries some is that Comcast will also become the biggest internet service provider in the country and will “use its market power to dictate the terms of broadband openness, cost and access…”
We can only hope that regulators somehow maintain an environment where competition thrives. Some of us are old enough to remember the days when “Ma Bell” controlled the world of communications in the U.S. Placing a phone call to someone 100 miles away meant per minute billing. Imagine what internet service would cost today had the Bell system remained intact? Let us not recreate it.