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Cogent and the Peering Ecosystem

Is Cogent entering "corporate middle age?" If so, what might this mean for bandwidth pricing?

Cogent Communications (CCOI) is best known for cheap bandwidth and peering controversies, including several with Level 3. In these peering spats, Cogent has traditionally been the one being "de-peered." But last week Cogent apparently ended its peering relationships with several UK providers, which prompted an interesting analysis by Todd Underwood on the Renesys blog about Cogent's evolution as a company:

If Cogent is pruning small peers as part of such a longer term strategy, that means that they've reached the early adulthood of their network. ... If Cogent is settling down into its corporate middle age, interesting things are afoot. Cogent has long held the role of wacky, freewheeling, young whippersnapper