Comcast is going to launch a wireless service next year

Brian Roberts Comcast 8006Business InsiderComcast CEO Brian Roberts.

Comcast plans to launch its own wireless service in 2017, CEO Brian Roberts said at the Goldman Sachs Communicopia conference Tuesday.

Since Comcast doesn’t have its own cell towers, it will rely on WiFi networks for connectivity. The user will be switched to Verizon’s network when they’re away from WiFi.

There are already a few smaller carriers that offer services like this, like Google’s Project Fi and Republic Wireless. Those companies work as mobile virtual network operators (MVNO) and pay major wireless carriers like Sprint or T-Mobile to use their cell towers when users aren’t connected to WiFi.

MVNOs tend to be cheaper than traditional wireless carriers, offering benefits like the option to only pay for the data you use.

The move will also help Comcast and Verizon compete with AT&T, which merged with DirecTV and is able to offer combined wireless, home broadband, and TV packages.

It’s unclear how much Comcast’s service will cost, which devices it will be compatible with, and whether or not it will be available nationwide.

Business Insider has reached out to Comcast for more details on how its wireless service will work.

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