Cox Communications Achieves Key Product Milestones
Five years after the Telecom Act of 1996 became law, Cox has more than 650,000 multi-service customers
Business Wire
Atlanta, GA

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 22, 2001--Cox Communications, Inc., today announced that it has reached several key milestones in its deployment of advanced broadband communications services.

At the end of January, the company had more than 250,000 residential digital telephone customers and more than 500,000 residential high-speed Internet access customers.

Even more significant, Cox also reached another important milestone of more than 650,000 "bundled" customers. Bundled customers are those subscribing to two or more Cox services -- typically a video product (basic or digital cable), plus digital telephone (local and long distance) and/or high-speed Internet access.

"It's fitting that these significant achievements coincide with the fifth anniversary of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, which opened up the telecom industry to competition and allowed Cox to expand its offerings to include telephone and data services," said Jim Robbins, President and CEO of Cox Communications. The Telecom Act, signed by President Clinton on February 8, 1996, was designed to increase consumer choices, promote product development, and enhance customer service and reliability within the telecommunications marketplace.

"Since the Act's passage, Cox has grown from a one-product cable television company into an advanced broadband communications company delivering multiple services to homes and businesses. Cox's increased ability to compete in its communities with other communications providers has helped deliver on the vision of the Telecom Act," Robbins added. In fact, Cox was the first communications provider to offer all three services -- digital cable, digital telephone and high-speed Internet access -- over a single broadband pipe. In Orange County, Calif., the first market in which all three services were available, Cox now has more than 20% market penetration in all three.

"Five years is a short time for significant change to occur in such a vast marketplace as telecommunications, but we feel that consumers have benefitted from the Telecom Act and will continue to do so through competition and innovation in the industry," said David Pugliese, Cox's Vice President of Sales and New Product Management. "At Cox, we're very pleased with our competitive position and initial results, and believe that we are moving in the right direction."

Cox first launched its high-speed Internet service in December 1996 under the Cox@Home brand. As of January 31, it offered high-speed Internet access to 518,000 customers under three brands -- Cox@Home Road Runner and Cox Express -- in 22 markets. Pugliese added that in Cox areas where the service is available, more than one in 10 homes with a personal computer have Cox high-speed Internet access.

In 1997, Cox was the first cable company to offer local and long distance residential telephone services over a broadband network. Cox Digital Telephone is available in eight markets, with a total of 258,000 telephone customers companywide at the end of January. "Remarkably, one in 10 homes with access to Cox Digital Telephone subscribes to it -- an extraordinary achievement after just four years of operation," Pugliese said. "Customer acceptance has far exceeded our expectations and proves that customers want a choice in local telephone providers and the convenience of getting long distance from the same company."

In addition to digital telephone and high-speed Internet access, Cox also has registered excellent results in deploying another new advanced broadband service, Cox Digital Cable. At the end of 2000, the service had over 840,000 customers and was available in more than 75 percent of Cox's service areas, offering customers enhanced programming, digital picture and sound, and greater viewing control and convenience. "In the video market, consumers now have an incredible amount of programming choices and provider options," states Lynne Elander, Vice President of Video Product Management. "Competition in this area pushes all video providers to constantly improve their services by offering more programming choices at competitive prices, as well as strong customer service and convenience."

"At the end of this year, we should have our high-speed Internet service and digital cable available in approximately 88% of our markets," Pugliese added. "Companywide, about 35% will be phone ready. We're confident that our strategy of expanding our advanced services footprint and developing bundled packages will prove successful in 2001."

Cox Communications serves approximately 6.2 million customers nationwide, making it the nation's fifth largest cable television company. A full-service provider of telecommunications products, Cox offers an array of services, including Cox Cable; local and long distance telephone services under the Cox Digital Telephone brand; high-speed Internet access under the brands Cox@Home, Road Runner and Cox Express; advanced digital video programming services under the Cox Digital Cable brand; and commercial voice and data services via Cox Business Services. Cox is an investor in telecommunications companies including Sprint PCS and Excite@Home, as well as programming networks including Discovery Channel, The Learning Channel, Outdoor Life and Speedvision. More information about Cox Communications can be accessed on the Internet at www.cox.com.

 

CONTACT: Cox Communications, Inc., Atlanta
  Anthony Surratt, 404/843-5124