Remember that Comcast initiative called Internet Essentials that aimed to provide discounted Internet access and affordable computers to low-income families? You know, the one that the FCC required Comcast to launch as part of their acquisition of NBCUniversal back in 2011?
The program was set to expire this year after signing up 350,000 families and selling 30,000 subsidized computers but Comcast renewed it a few weeks back. Why? Because they're trying to merge with Time Warner Cable and they want to get on the good side of regulators once again.
To further brighten their image, Comcast is launching another program that'll give those with outstanding bills a chance to re-subscribe to their services.
Up to this point, Comcast hasn't allowed those with unpaid bills to apply for service again until the outstanding debt has been paid. But that's all changing as Comcast will now forgive debts for anyone with a bill over a year old.
In the event someone has a bill that's less than a year old, they'll still need to pay it back in full although Comcast promises to work with families to set up an installment plan. Eligible families signing up for income-based service for the first time, meanwhile, will get up to six months of service free of charge (a $60 value).
It's a smart move on Comcast's part as it looks good in the eyes of regulators and could result in some new subscribers. Eating outstanding bills isn't that big of a deal either as they're not likely to get most of that old money back anyway.