Broadband lies and increased profits

Broadband providers are always crying the blues and how they need to institute things like caps in order to provide fair service to all along with how expensive all this stuff takes. Every time they do though very smart people who have a solid understanding of the business, and the business of numbers, point out how much FUD is being spread around.

Nate Anderson at Ars Technica has just done that with an excellent post that breaks down the money being made by these self-same companies that are crying the blues. In the post Nate takes each of the major players and takes a look at how they are in fact making a lot of money while at the same time some are even cutting back on investment in broadband. It is well worth taking the time to read the whole post but here’s a short breakdown of some of his points.


  • Revenues for Internet access is up, jumping from $1.57 billion in the first quarter of 2007 to $1.75 billion in the first quarter of 2008 to $1.91 billion in the first quarter of 2009.
  • Expenses for “High-speed Internet” have consistently fallen from 2007. It cost $142 million to deliver Internet access in the first quarter of 2007, $138 million in the first quarter of 2008, and $120 million in the first quarter of 2009.
  • Comcast had an operating cash flow margin of 39 percent in the first quarter of 2009, up from 37.8 percent a year earlier and 37.4 percent in the first quarter of 2007.

Time Warner

  • also posted very good number for the first quarter
  • Overall revenues were up five percent from a year before.
  • When broken down by category their Internet business did much better – 11 percent higher.
  • Time Warner indicated that its Internet expenses had dropped by about 12 percent, even as revenues increased.
  • By the first quarter of 2009 Time Warner substantially cut its capital expenditures, from $846 million a year ago to $769 million for the last three months.


  • Internet revenues are up
  • The company has already spent most of its money for its DOCSIS 3.0 upgrades.
  • Cable television (includes data, voice, and TV packages) was 29.5 percent higher in 2008 than it was in 2007.
  • Its business Internet service, Optimum Lightpath, operating income was up by 129.8%

AT&T / Verizon

  • Both companies have reported healthy growth in their broadband business, especially among the U-Verse and FiOS services.
  • AT&T’s wireline business increased by $300 million in broadband revenue

The end line

When it comes down to it all these broadband providers hare making a lot of money providing sub-par services when compared to the rest of the world. When they do decide to allow us to have comparable services they charge completely outrageous fees. Users are being treated as nothing better than a trough where these dollar flush pigs can constantly gorge themselves.

Unfortunately about all we can do is howl at the moon because they don’t give a shit past doing only what they have to in order to keep questionable government regulators happy.