Editor's note: Bloomberg is reporting, per sources, that Comcast is planning to drop its proposed takeover of Time Warner Cable. No formal announcement has been made, but U.S. regulators opposed the planned $45.2 billion transaction earlier this week. - Stephanie
Comcast Corporation, formerly registered as Comcast Holdings, is the largest broadcasting and cable company in the world by revenue. It is the largest cable company and home Internet service provider in the United States, and the nation's third largest home telephone service provider. Comcast services U.S. residential and commercial customers in 40 states and the District of Columbia. The company is headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
As the owner of the international media company NBCUniversal since 2011, Comcast is a producer of feature films and television programs intended for theatrical exhibition and over-the-air and cable television broadcast.
Comcast also operates three cable-only channels (E! Entertainment Television, the Golf Channel, and NBCSN), and over-the-air national broadcast network channels (NBC and Telemundo), the film production studio Universal Pictures, and Universal Parks & Resorts, with a global total of nearly 200 family entertainment locations and attractions in the U.S. and several other countries including U.A.E., South Korea, Russia and China, with several new locations reportedly planned and being developed for future operation. Comcast also has significant holding in digital distribution (ThePlatform). In February 2014 the company agreed to merge with Time Warner Cable in an equity swap deal worth $45.2 billion. Under the terms of the agreement Comcast is to acquire 100% of Time Warner Cable.
Comcast has been criticized for a number of reasons. Comcast's customer satisfaction often ranks among the lowest in the cable industry. Comcast has violated net neutrality practices in the past; and, despite Comcast's commitment to a narrow definition of net neutrality, critics advocate a definition of which precludes distinction between Comcast's private network services and the rest of the Internet. Critics also point out a lack of competition; in the vast majority of Comcast's service area, it does not compete with other cable providers. Given Comcast's negotiating power as a large ISP, some suspect that Comcast could leverage paid peering agreements to unfairly influence end-user connection speeds.