Comcast entered the wireless space last year, debuting Xfinity Mobile. It's a new service from Comcast that has actually garnered a good amount of customers in 2017. But according to the company's CFO, Comcast expects the division to put up losses of around $1.2 billion in the first 18 months of its existence. Xfinity Mobile launched in the middle of 2017, and lost $480 million in that calendar year. Comcast expects Xfinity Mobile to lose quite a bit more in 2018, as it ramps up marketing as well as adding support for older smartphones.
Xfinity Mobile isn't your typical wireless carrier. It's what is known as an MVNO or a Mobile Virtual Network Operator. The way Xfinity Mobile works is, it runs on Verizon's network and supplements with Xfinity's hotspots that are around the country. Comcast had this deal with Verizon to use its network as an MVNO for quite a few years, when it licensed its spectrum to Verizon. Comcast finally decided to enact that part of the agreement in 2017 and launch its own wireless service. And because it runs on Verizon's network as well as using Xfinity WiFi around the country, you aren't able to bring your own phone over to Xfinity Mobile. So it currently only runs on a handful of Samsung and Apple smartphones. It's very similar to Google's Project Fi, but it is something Comcast is working on expanding. So users can bring their own smartphones to Xfinity Mobile, or at least have more choice.
Comcast signed up around 380,000 customers for Xfinity Mobile in 2017. That's not a bad number, considering the service is only available for existing Comcast customers. It's a pretty solid service offering, giving users the choice of paying per gigabyte or getting unlimited data for around $45/month. Which is very competitive and does make it cheaper than the four major carriers in the US. Comcast also has plans to bundle its wireless service with its other services. So customers would be able to bundle home internet, TV and wireless service together and get some form of a discount. Though, there is very little detail on those bundles right now. Comcast has really only said that those bundles are in its plans and nothing more, so far.