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Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

Frequent Visitor

Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

For over a week our internet has been running extremely slow, to the point of youtube videos having to buffer in 144p resolution when I should be able to easily watch 1080p videos. All speed test I've taken indicate that I'm getting the 90Mb/s down and 12Mb/s up that we pay for, but the problem is that it's nowhere near those speeds. The reason I ask if comcast throttles bandwidth is because I also happen to have a VPN client and when ever I use it, my internet goes back to normal. In other words, if they can't see the traffic, they can't control it right? I do know that Comcast is currently throttling bandwidth in some areas as a trial for new service plans, but I checked and my area is not apart of that. So, if I my connection is being slowed deliberately, I don't think it's right that I can't even watch full HD videos in a time where 4k resolution is available and HD is the standard.

Frequent Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

So nobody can answer this? I'll probably just have to switch service providers then because it's unbearable.

Regular Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

I live on Cape Cod in Massachusetts and I'm having the same problem as Alex. I'm paying for 100 MBS download, but am only getting 25 MBS or less. Like Alex, this slow down started just a few weeks ago. I thought it might be my Wifi network.

 

Today, 2/29/16, I finally did a speed check and was shocked at how slow the DL speed was. I called Comcast and spoke with a customer service rep and also a tech support rep. I power cycled my modem with the CSR on the phone and continued to get the low DL speed.

The tech support woman walked me through a bunch of steps, none of which made any difference and then said I needed a new modem, that the one I was using couldn't support the speeds I expected. I told her up until a few weeks ago I was seeing between 90 and 100 MBS (checked via Ookla) without any problem.

I asked her pointblank if Comcast was throttling to get me to lease a new modem and she said no. I assured her I didn't need a new modem and didn't want to buy a modem I didn't need.

 

She then came up with the excuse Comcast was having an outage problem in my area and I could expect it to clear up by 1 PM. It's now almost 8 PM and my DL speed is still slow.  I checked a Comcast outage site and don't see any reported problems in my area.

 

I don't know what's going on, but I feel Comcast isn't being honest.

Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


MyNameisAlex wrote:

So nobody can answer this? I'll probably just have to switch service providers then because it's unbearable.


I apologize that no one as addressed this with you before now. I've checked your account and it appears there is a wiring issue that is contributing to the poor speeds. A technician would be needed to check the wiring to the modem and your signal levels.


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

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Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


RachelOnCapeCod wrote:

I live on Cape Cod in Massachusetts and I'm having the same problem as Alex. I'm paying for 100 MBS download, but am only getting 25 MBS or less. Like Alex, this slow down started just a few weeks ago. I thought it might be my Wifi network.

 

Today, 2/29/16, I finally did a speed check and was shocked at how slow the DL speed was. I called Comcast and spoke with a customer service rep and also a tech support rep. I power cycled my modem with the CSR on the phone and continued to get the low DL speed.

The tech support woman walked me through a bunch of steps, none of which made any difference and then said I needed a new modem, that the one I was using couldn't support the speeds I expected. I told her up until a few weeks ago I was seeing between 90 and 100 MBS (checked via Ookla) without any problem.

I asked her pointblank if Comcast was throttling to get me to lease a new modem and she said no. I assured her I didn't need a new modem and didn't want to buy a modem I didn't need.

 

She then came up with the excuse Comcast was having an outage problem in my area and I could expect it to clear up by 1 PM. It's now almost 8 PM and my DL speed is still slow.  I checked a Comcast outage site and don't see any reported problems in my area.

 

I don't know what's going on, but I feel Comcast isn't being honest.


Hi RachelOnCapeCod!

 

I've checked your account and I am not seeing any signal issues that would contribute to slow speeds. When you're running a speed test, are you directly connected to your modem with Ethernet cable or are you testing while wireless? I'd like to rule out any variables.


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

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Regular Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

Thank you for your reply.

 

I'm speed testing from a desktop which is connected to the router via an Ethernet cable.

 

I  just checked speed again at 11:50 AM, 3/1 EST and it's decreased yet further to 17.64 DL and 4.05 UL.

 

Whatever is happening it certainly is not getting better.

 

Thank you

Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

I will PM you to provide some additional info.


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

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Regular Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

Not sure what changed, but I just power cycled both modem and router and speed tested again - 77.MBS DL and 12 MBS UL.

 

Not the speeds I'm paying for, but certainly better than the results I got earlier. Interesting to note the server selected for this last test is located in Orleans, MA which is only about 10 miles from where I live. The earlier tests were all connecting to servers in Boston.

 

Does the server location make that big  a difference?

Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


RachelOnCapeCod wrote:

Not sure what changed, but I just power cycled both modem and router and speed tested again - 77.MBS DL and 12 MBS UL.

 

Not the speeds I'm paying for, but certainly better than the results I got earlier.


Your modem is provisioned for 150 Mbps/10 Mbps, so I'd agree that 77/12 isn't what you're paying for, but it is a lot better than your previous testing.

 

Interesting to note the server selected for this last test is located in Orleans, MA which is only about 10 miles from where I live. The earlier tests were all connecting to servers in Boston.

 

Does the server location make that big  a difference?


Depending on a variety of factors, yes, the location of the server you're testing to can make a big impact on your speed test results. I recommend using the closest server to you. If you're still getting latency or slow results at that point, there's a better chance of slower speeds accurately determining a problem.

 

I did check your account and found that there are some spikes with error correction. Error correction will attempt to re-create a dropped packet of information when it gets lost between to computers. If the error correction rate is high or shows spikes, it can indicate that a tech should evalute your connection. Would it be possible to arrange a date/time that is convenient for you to have someone check this on-site?


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

I am an Official Comcast Employee.
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Regular Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


John - just replied to your PM, so saw this second. An on-site eval would be OK, unless the cost is prohibitive.

 

ComcastJohnF wrote:
Your modem is provisioned for 150 Mbps/10 Mbps, so I'd agree that 77/12 isn't what you're paying for, but it is a lot better than your previous testing.

Depending on a variety of factors, yes, the location of the server you're testing to can make a big impact on your speed test results. I recommend using the closest server to you. If you're still getting latency or slow results at that point, there's a better chance of slower speeds accurately determining a problem.

I did check your account and found that there are some spikes with error correction. Error correction will attempt to re-create a dropped packet of information when it gets lost between to computers. If the error correction rate is high or shows spikes, it can indicate that a tech should evalute your connection. Would it be possible to arrange a date/time that is convenient for you to have someone check this on-site?


 

Frequent Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

Thanks for the answer John, but I'm still not convinced that's it to be honest. How would a VPN fix any issues with wiring? Once enabled, I'm able to watch full HD videos once again and my internet goes back to normal.

Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


MyNameisAlex wrote:

Thanks for the answer John, but I'm still not convinced that's it to be honest. How would a VPN fix any issues with wiring? Once enabled, I'm able to watch full HD videos once again and my internet goes back to normal.


VPNs use encryption to keep your traffic private, and because of that extra overhead, it generally causes a slower connection due to the encryption and decryption. I cannot speak to what exactly is happening by using your specific VPN provider or how they channel their traffic.

 

I can say with certainty that we do not throttle Internet connections, and upon review of your account, there is a wiring issue that should be looked at by a technician.


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

I am an Official Comcast Employee.
Official Employees are from multiple teams within Comcast: Product, Support, Leadership. We ask that you post publicly so people with similar questions may benefit from the conversation.

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Frequent Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

Yeah, my speed tests show around 40Mb/s with the VPN on, but I can easily watch HD videos and browse webpages now that I couldn't when I'm not using a VPN. Also, I think I know what wiring issue you're talking about. My dad spliced two ethernet cables together even though that's not really the best way to do it haha, but it worked fine before and I've never used those ethernet cables for my computer anyhow, they still use them though. All our connections are slow suddenly over the past week. 

Diamond Problem Solver

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


MyNameisAlex wrote:

Also, I think I know what wiring issue you're talking about. My dad spliced two ethernet cables together even though that's not really the best way to do it haha, but it worked fine before and I've never used those ethernet cables for my computer anyhow, they still use them though.  


Do you mean *coax cables* ? They can not see "ethernet cables* or anything on your LAN/ home network. They can not even see any specific coax hardware. They can only see the potential signal degradation that may be being caused by insufficient wiring.

Frequent Visitor

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?

I did mean ethernet, I just didn't know that they can't see any hardware on my LAN. Back to the topic though. So, even if there is some signal degradation on the line, why does my connection drastically improve while using a VPN if Comcast does not throttle traffic? The line quality is irrelevant if all of my traffic has to go over it at some point, including traffic while on the VPN. I still believe that they do throttle my connection because of this, but I'd love to be proved wrong so I can just fix it and get back to normal. It's seriously stressful dealing with speeds that slow. I can't even do my online homework without having pages load forever and somethings not ever loading at all. 

Official Employee

Re: Does comcast throttle bandwidth?


MyNameisAlex wrote:

I did mean ethernet, I just didn't know that they can't see any hardware on my LAN. Back to the topic though. So, even if there is some signal degradation on the line, why does my connection drastically improve while using a VPN if Comcast does not throttle traffic? The line quality is irrelevant if all of my traffic has to go over it at some point, including traffic while on the VPN. I still believe that they do throttle my connection because of this, but I'd love to be proved wrong so I can just fix it and get back to normal. It's seriously stressful dealing with speeds that slow. I can't even do my online homework without having pages load forever and somethings not ever loading at all. 


I will have an advanced support rep reach out to you today to provide further assistance.


--
John
xfinity.com/experience

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