UTOPIA Prices on the Rise?

While many cablecos and telcos are holding the line on broadband pricing, UTOPIA may be stepping it up a notch. FuzeCore lists pricing for Internet connections that is more money for less bandwidth than we’re used to getting. XMission lists similar pricing for UTOPIA services in Tremonton, though the prices for other UTOPIA cities is largely unchanged. Neither Nuvont nor Veracity disclose their pricing up-front (at least as far as I can tell).

Commenters who contacted service providers for pricing in Tremonton have gotten quotes of install costs in the $30-60 range. It’s entirely possible that UTOPIA is trying out some new pricing models that build the cost of the install into the monthly fee similar to what cable and phone companies already do. The real question is if pricing will drop once the install is paid for or if customers could choose to pay off the install cost in exchange for a lower monthly fee. I’m also wondering if the pricing in Tremonton will be rolled out to other UTOPIA markets should it prove successful.

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19 Responses to UTOPIA Prices on the Rise?

  1. Capt. Video says:

    Does the slower speeds (similar for both providers 10/2mb and 10/10mb) and the higher prices indicate something about new UTOPIA wholesale prices?

    Does Comcast offer data service in Tremonton? I can’t see why anyone would sign-up for service at these prices and speeds if cable data were available??

    Is it both slower and more costly than cable data service?

  2. Jesse says:

    I think Frontier’s 5GB cap DSL and Hughes’ “hang on to your wallet” satellite are the only options in Tremonton.

  3. Capt. Video says:

    That would explain the high prices.

    I would be upset if I were part of the funding mechanism for UTOPIA and then they took advantage of me (my residents) by charging more in my community just because they could.

    Rather than serving as a force that would bring other providers pricing DOWN, did they just increased UTOPIA prices UP to where the other providers were?

    Is there no cable TV provider in Tremonton?

  4. Jesse says:

    I just checked and Comcast is available in Tremonton (or at least AOL Television thinks there should be Comcast TV in Tremonton). I have no idea if there is data service out there.

  5. jonathan says:

    Wonder if it has anything to do with the backhaul to down south. From what I remember its on fiber they purchased but still. I wonder if they are factoring that in.

  6. Capt. Video says:

    Comcast on their web site offers a digital cable + data (6Mb/ bursting to 12Mb) package for $66 a month for the 1st year in Tremonton.

  7. Bill says:

    We have had Comcast in Tremonton for many years. They just increased the speed when Utopia announced that they had arrived.

    I had planned to make the switch, but the prices and lack of speed improvements have me thinking twice.

  8. SirTomster says:

    WTG UTOPIA. Build it, price it too high, and they will NOT come!

  9. Capt. Video says:

    I’m not sure, but in the past, UTOPIA did not determine the final retail price….however they may be the most important single influence as they set the “transport” fee which is the largest single cost to the retail provider?

    But I sure agree that if you price it high they will not come.

    I have often said if you want to be a successful network you need to offer services people want, at a price they are willing to pay. If you do that you will be have an opportunity to be successful. If you don’t offer “services people want at a price they will pay”, you have little opportunity to be successful.

    The reason I say you have an opportunity to be successful is that you still need to operate a good business. Marketing, controlling costs, etc.

    UTOPIA and iProvo have either not offered services people want at prices they will pay or have not operated a good business. I would suggest it is a little of both they (and their service provider partners) have failed at.

    Both networks have made changes hoping to fix it.

  10. Tom says:

    It has to be on UTOPIA’s end. I see no reason why Xmission would have one price for Tremonton and a different price for all the other cities. Unless they just want to gouge the folks in Tremonton. I really really really hope that is not the case.

    I could see recouping the construction costs options if there was a contract requirement. Then prices would drop to normal ranges. But that would apply to all NEW construction including the already built out cities. But here it shows that only applies to Tremonton. And you are saving a little going contract but not enough to cover installation.

    Whats unique up there? New cabinet(s), new hub (I assume) how is the fiber run from Salt Lake to Tremonton. Using UTOPIA fiber or someone else’s and paying for that?

    What happens as they expand in Orem, Murry, or WVC? will there be Old Areas vs New Areas pricing?

    I do not see it being install fees for the pricing unless they decided to just eat the fees in the old UTOPIA areas and just hit the new areas. In case Sucks to be in one of the new cities!

    But wow. Just wow. At that pricing not sure if I would sign up.

  11. Jesse says:

    While I don’t like the increased pricing any more than the rest of you, you can’t compete just on price. There are a lot of people fed up with the incumbent carriers for poor customer service, transfer caps and failing to reach advertised speeds. It’s also worth noting that symmetrical services cannot be found at those prices and the higher-speed tiers are still highly price-competitive with similar offerings from Qwest and Comcast.

    Sure, if you’re looking for the $15/mo DSL, this isn’t for you. For everyone else, there’s still value.

  12. Mark says:

    Whether or not the prices are on the rise it is still cheaper than incumbent providers. I have a friend in Tremonton who just signed up with FuzeCore for voice and data. For a two-year contract, he had no installation fee, and is paying less than he was paying Frontier for dial-up.

    I am guessing Xmission will be raising their prices for all cities soon enough. Notice the notes that the current prices are only good through the end of December. Since service in Tremonton began so close to the change they probably implemented the prices early.

    I live in Brigham City and am anxiously awaiting UTOPIA. I don’t know about Tremonton but Brigham City has areas where Comcast does not offer service despite what their website may say, like where I live. And from what my neighbors have said they don’t plan on offering service anytime soon. And now, Qwest is denying some of my newer neighbors data service because they don’t have the capacity.

  13. Tom says:

    Can you say the price your friend got?

    Curious how many parts of Tremonton are hosed with those options. But if the $66 comcast deal is in a large portion of Tremonton then Utopia is only going to get the areas that Comcast and Qwest/Frontier choose not to support.

    And that is not a profitable UTOPIA. You have to beat them across the board. Where they are strong and weak.

    I love that UTOPIA will support the whole city not just the “profitable” areas like the incumbents but UTOPIA has to be competitive in the whole area.

    If Comcast’s deal is over a large part of Tremonton then why would someone pay $42 for 10/2 when they can get 6/x and TV for $24 more?

    Yes there will always be those takers who need that speed but honestly. Do geeks like us make up the majority of the market? No. They have to gear their offerings to the majority of the people out there that are looking for cheap/easy/quality.

    So I guess it depends on the Tremonton market. How many can get the Comcast deal. If a small percentage then yes the UTOPIA deal is still worth it but if if a large percentage then UTOPIA isn’t playing to win they are playing to take the table scraps of the big guys. And that means UTOPIA loses.

    I really really really hope Comcast has only a small part of Tremonton and this pricing isn’t someone shooting themselves.

    Warren! I bet you are out there! Can you talk to us?

    It would be good to see what others are pricing for this area but at the moment I will assume that the pricing will be similar to other providers. Xmission is too smart to price themselves out of the game.

  14. Capt. Video says:

    The Comcast price I mentioned was on the web site for NEW customers. Typical comcast deal is low price coming in to increase later. I do not think the $66 price is good for current Comcast customers.

    I’m fairly sure UTOPIA prices will be competitive. Nothing that will match the new customer deals Comcast offers, but competitive with standard Comcast pricing.

    No one know what percentage of Comcast customers pay that price.

    But I will suggest that a new provider being “competitive” on pricing is not likely to make a big impression on the market.

    People tend NOT to like to change service providers and need a strong reason to do so. The speed differences will mean little to most customers. If you wanted to really gain market share, you need a blockbuster offer followed by good service to keep them.

    …and Oh, you also need a triple play so you can bundle.

    I expect UTOPIA to get between 20% and 30%. Significantly below the the “Likely” 76% or even the “Minimum” 61% UTOPIA/DC predicted for Tremonton in early presentations and well below the 92% “Maximum” on the SRI surveys the predictions were based upon.

    If UTOPIA does no better in Tremonton than they have done in other areas it would indicate they have not yet learned the “secret” to providing what the people want at a price they will pay…and are doomed on this go around as they were on the last?

  15. tipringer says:

    “if UTOPIA does no better in Tremonton than they have done in other areas it would indicate they have not yet learned the “secret” to providing what the people want at a price they will pay…and are doomed on this go around as they were on the last?”

    Based on what we speak of here on this site, care to take odds on that lesson ?
    I would say there are many lessons to be learned…some are yet to come btw…..

  16. Mark says:

    I don’t remember exactly how much my friend is paying FuzeCore, but I’m pretty sure it was exactly what was on their website. I did forget to mention there was a $20 fee for porting his current number over. Frontier was charging him at least $10 more as I remember.

    I live in a new subdivision in Brigham City and one of the builders here has other subdivisions in Tremonton and in the Ogden area. He asked Comcast when they planned on providing service for his subdivisions. They told him probably not in the foreseeable future. They were too busy trying to maintain areas where they were already built out.

    But you, Tom and Capt. Video, have a point. Most people that I know who have Comcast available are not in any rush to switch. Most people don’t even know what UTOPIA is. Except that they are the ones who have left their sidewalks and lots torn up for months now.

  17. Bill says:

    I pay $62 for Comcast (data only) in Tremonton and have been a long time customer.

    It will be interesting to see what type of offers Comcast is willing to give when I call to cancel. I’m not interested in their video services however.

    New customers would be hard pressed to pass up the Comcast promo. But, I’ve decided to jump aboard Utopia as I could really use the symmetrical connection.

  18. Jesse says:

    Comcast will almost always offer you a 6-month promo rate when you call to cancel. (I’ve used that more than once to get the video price dropped.) What would be really useful is to know what kind of take rates UTOPIA is getting up there. Of course, that kind of data seems to be hard to come by these days.

  19. Capt. Video says:

    AT&T U-verse press release:
    “AT&T has completed its AT&T U-verse Total Home DVR rollout, well ahead of schedule. Customers in every market where U-verse services are available now have access to Total Home DVR, which gives U-verse TV customers the freedom to play back SD and HD recorded programs from a single DVR on any connected TV in the home, at no additional charge. Total Home DVR is unmatched by any cable provider and has met positive response from customers since being introduced in September.”

    This is they type of feature (whole home DVR, On screen Called ID, etc.) that both iProvo and UTOPIA originally promised but have failed to deliver.

    Now not only has UTOPIA failed to deliver the advanced video features that would actually help move cable customers, they have moved BACKWARDS by not even offering the triple play.

    Is it any wonder they are failing to reach expected subscriber numbers and therefore failing to reach projected financial numbers?

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