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Comcast Starts Charging For A Formerly Free Service

Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)  --  There is a small but important change for Comcast phone customers.
The cable giant is no longer providing a free battery backup for the service. 

It might speak to a wider trend.

It's now $35 plus shipping for a new battery to keep your Xfinity Voice modem up and running if the power goes off.

Customers who have cell phones might shrug and say they can call 911 wirelessly in an emergency.

Jeff Baumgartner, editor of the telecom industry news site, says the move could signal more changes to come.

Braumgartner also says, "we are starting to see cable operators like Comcast start to put in these new policies that are really looking to reduce their operational and capital expenditures, particularly with homeside devices, and push some of those costs off to the consumer."

Meaning the days of renting cable modems and even set-top boxes and DVRs might be numbered, in favor of your provider selling you the item outright.

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