Cox Communications carries the full complement of cable capacity. The company provides basic cable service to more than 6 million customers, including about 3 million digital cable subscribers and 3.5 million Internet access subscribers in about 20 states, making it the third-largest US cable company, behind Comcast and Time Warner Cable. Cox also provides telephone service as a competitive local-exchange carrier (CLEC). In addition, Cox offers voice and data communications services to businesses (Cox Business) and provides national and local advertising services (Cox Media). The company is a subsidiary of media conglomerate Cox Enterprises.
Using its cable networks, the company offers local phone service and resells long-distance under the Cox Digital Telephone brand. Its Cox Business segment tackles the enterprise communications market and provides services through dedicated fiber-optic and related hybrid networks. The company's Cox Media unit focuses on delivering advertising sales across its video systems. It also has investments in several telecom and technology companies, including a video-on-demand services joint venture with Comcast and Time Warner called iN DEMAND.
The company's brief foray into wireless phone and broadband data service lasted less than two years. Cox launched the service in a dozen markets over the Sprint Nextel network in early 2010 as a way to stand out against its rivals. However, its 3G service couldn't compete with AT&T's and Verizon's 4G network, and Cox couldn't get its hands on any of the latest phone models, much less Apple's iPhone. Cox decided to abandon the service in late 2011 and shut down service for existing customers in 2012. It also sold its 20 MHz spectrum licenses to Verizon for $315 million.