Nearly two years after rolling out its multi-million dollar gigabit internet service in the Little Rock area, Comcast Business has completed the expansion of its fiber network into the fast-growing central Arkansas suburb of Maumelle, company officials announced Monday (July 23).
The $2 million fiber network expansion to Maumelle, which spans more than 20 square miles, will offer the area’s businesses, schools, hospitals and government organizations access to up to 10 gigabits per second (Gbps) internet speeds, and up to 100 Gbps in certain instances. Comcast also plans to deliver up to 1 Gigabit internet service to residential customers in Maumelle later this year.
“Comcast’s investment in Maumelle speaks to this city’s impressive commercial and residential growth,” said Doug Guthrie, Comcast’s regional senior vice president. “Our advanced network will be capable of serving a variety of clients in the healthcare, government, education, retail and hospitality industries with speeds of up to 100 gigabits per second.”
In November 2016, Comcast first deployed its 100-gigabit network for the business community and a one-gigabit Internet service for residents in the Little Rock area. At the time, Mayor Mark Stodola and Little Rock Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Jay Chesshir called the ultra-fast internet service a “must-have” technology for the city’s growing wide array of companies in the manufacturing, transportation and service industries, as well as the emerging aviation and biotechnology sectors.
“The ability for a city to offer 100-gig speeds over an advanced fiber network has become critical in today’s marketplace,” said Chesshir. “This keeps us competitive for existing company expansions while bringing in new businesses.”
Since then, Comcast has also added over 20,000 wifi hotspots for businesses, homes and public outdoor locations across Little Rock and central Arkansas, the only Arkansas market served by the Philadelphia-based cable and telecom conglomerate.
Last year, Comcast launched its Xfinity Mobile in Little Rock and customers nationwide. Through a partnership that gives the cable giant access to the Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network, Comcast now resells Xfinity Mobile wireless service to its customer with access to wifi hotspots nationwide.
In Arkansas, Comcast is among a host of rival cable operators and wireless giants, rural telecoms, electric cooperatives and smaller telecom providers engaged in a high-stakes battle to bundle internet, wireless, home security, TV and streaming services to broadband-hungry consumers.
Nearly 18 months ago, AT&T also unveiled its long-awaited one gigabit Internet service to specific locations in central Arkansas, including Little Rock, Bryant, Maumelle, North Little Rock and surrounding communities.