Cable provider <strong>Charter Communications<\/strong> (NASDAQ: CHTR) has achieved great results during the COVID-19 era \u2014 in part because people are not moving. That means that they are not on new customer promotional rates, raising average revenue per user (ARPU).\r\n\r\n\u201cIt\u2019s hard to forecast when activity levels will rise again,\u201d Charter Chairman and CEO Tom Rutledge told the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference on Sept. 23. \u201cI don\u2019t know when the last [COVID-19] variant [will be complete], and people say that life\u2019s normal again.\u201d\r\n\r\nWhen reopening is complete, growth will continue, as every time somebody changes their address, that person provides an opportunity to compete. \u201cIt allows us to grow [market] share even though it costs more,\u201d Rutledge said.\r\n\r\nChurn has been low among low-income customers, due in part to the <a href="https:\/\/connectivitybusiness.com\/news\/regulatory-legal\/fcc-orders-emergency-broadband-benefit-program-targeting-low-income-households\/">Emergency Broadband Benefit program<\/a> (EBB) for low-income connectivity. The EBB is allocated permanent funding in the proposed infrastructure bill, which \u201cwould have a positive impact should it pass,\u201d Rutledge said.\r\n\r\nCharter will continue expanding in rural areas, as it considers a larger percentage of them to be viable for new construction due to an increase in the predicted take-up rate, which is the percentage of subscribers per home passed. That expansion will be in addition to Charter\u2019s rural network buildout that is <a href="https:\/\/connectivitybusiness.com\/news\/space-services\/investments-rural-broadband-fuel-battle-between-terrestrial-and-orbital-providers-spacex\/">funded in part by the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF)<\/a>.\r\n\r\nAdditional network upgrades need not be expensive on a per-home basis, as Charter upgraded its network to the DOCSIS 3.1 cable standard at a cost of $450 million, or $9 per home passed, Rutledge said. That upgrade enabled Charter to deliver 1 Gbps downstream throughout its footprint.\r\n\r\nIf in the future there is demand for upstream capacity, \u201cwe can do essentially an electronic upgrade of the network and do it at a very low per-home price,\u201d Rutledge said, citing high-splits, mid-splits or even, if 1 Gbps upstream is needed, full-duplex DOCSIS upgrades.\r\n\r\nIn addition, although Charter\u2019s mobile offering is not achieving the growth it would in a normal environment, Charter is achieving higher-than-predicted sales to new customers, further increasing anticipated revenue per new subscriber.\r\n\r\nAlthough the linear TV business is declining, Charter\u2019s advertising inventory sells at a higher cost-per-thousand (CPM) due to <a href="https:\/\/connectivitybusiness.com\/news\/strategy-markets\/streaming-video-valuations-rise-analysts-anticipate-strategy-shifts-asset-sales-and\/">digital targeting<\/a> at a local and national level, according to Rutledge.\r\n\r\nCharter is the largest streamer in the country, the CEO claimed, noting that Charter\u2019s app appears on <strong>Roku<\/strong> (NASDAQ:ROKU) and <strong>Apple<\/strong> (NASDAQ:AAPL) devices. \u201cCustomers do not need to take the box from us; they can take the app from us,\u201d he said.