Cox Monopoly in PV

Curtis Liu, Online Editor

Cox Communications is the dominant internet service provider on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. With plans starting at $65.98 per month, one would immediately seek a cheaper option. But it’s hard to do so when no cheaper option exists.

 

Cox is known to dominate the densely populated Southern California. Due to this monopoly, seeing another major internet service provider knocking into this market is highly unlikely.

In a comparison between Cox Communications and Spectrum, the speeds are similar, as both companies offer lower speeds (around 30 Mbps) up to gigabit internet (around 1000 Mbps). Spectrum is the cheaper option and has better coverage while also not having a streaming data cap. For Cox users, streaming data maxes out at 1 TB. 

The average reviews for both Cox and Spectrum aren’t great. The main problem with these companies is the speed inconsistencies and mediocre service. However, it is hard to maintain the internet speed over a large area of coverage, and it is certainly harder to maintain an above-mediocre service. Yet, if you had to choose, the biggest difference comes in prices. Cox has better introductory rates, but everything else related to price is dominated by Spectrum.

An anonymous resident in Rancho Palos Verdes pays 250 dollars per month for both internet and cable, yet claims that he doesn’t use his cable TV. What makes him pay for the cable TV? Enter the bundles. Even when unnecessary, Cox has bundles that add excess services and features to make customers pay more, often for the same outcome. What is the motivation for Cox to sell services in bundles? Money? Maybe not. Customer satisfaction? Better. Happiness? The correct answer.

Monopolies are harmful to consumers because the existence of one leads to higher prices. Companies also have fewer incentives to innovate because the money is already theirs to keep. This eventually leads to a general decrease in product efficiency. The companies have less motivation to cut prices as well because, after all, profit is everything. With monopolies, the consumers have no choice but to choose bundles with great pricing plans that help them have access to these extraordinary services.

Monopolies are really only beneficial to the government because they can regulate economies of scale and fair prices. This is beneficial to the company because gaining patents can increase investment funds.

So why is Palos Verdes dominated by Cox?

The world may never know.