Reports recently surfaced of a Cox Elite Gamer service that would give gamers better connections. Now, the cable company is clarifying that this new offering doesn’t represent a paid internet fastlane.
When it was discovered, some folks raised concerns that this would be the type of paid internet fastlane that many feared would come following the repeal of US net neutrality laws. However, as part of the announcement of test locations for it, Cox Cable is stating that such is not the case.
The Elite Gamer service does not actually manipulate the bandwidth available to gamers who opt into the service. Instead, the service uses WTFast’s technology to simply find the best route between a player and a game’s servers. It does not prioritize someone’s bandwidth over others.
WTFast provides an optimized gaming network that the company calls a “Gamers Private Network” to paying customers. Interested players are already able to use their services on their own. It seems that Cox’s Elite Gamer service is simply bundling WTFast’s services with Cox internet packages.
Indeed, the website for the Cox Elite Gamer service states that membership permits users to route their network activity for select games through a dedicated gaming network.
Speaking to Techradar, a Cox representative stated that “Cox Elite Gamer solves a problem with deficiencies in the public internet, NOT our network. No customer’s experience is degraded as a result of any customers purchasing Cox Elite Gamer Service as an add-on to their internet service.”
When it comes to questions of net neutrality, Cox tends to adamantly defend itself. When questioned about it by the Associated Press back in 2017, Cox stated that they had no plans to provide any sort of fastlanes to their subscribers.
Cox will be running a test of the Cox Elite Gamer service in Arizona for the next three weeks. The service will supposedly provide 34% less lag, 55% fewer ping spikes, and 45% less jitter. It supports a limited selection of games such as Fortnite, Overwatch, and Apex Legends on Windows PCs. When it rolls out, subscribers on their Cox Internet Preferred 100 or faster plans can avail of it for $15 a month.