Lightning-Fast Connection Comes At Thunderous Price

from the is-it-worth-it? dept

Back in August, I thought AT&T Broadband was being particularly short-sighted in trying to tier their cable modem access. I thought it was unlikely that many people would sign up for the higher, more expensive service. However, according to this article, they’ve found some suckers to take them up on the deal – and pay $95/month to get 3.5 Mbps downstream and 384 Kbps upstream. This is, of course, about double the price, just to get their webpages slightly faster (and still with ridiculous, unnecessary, limitations). If I were paying $95/month and told that my upstream was capped at 384 Kbps, I’d go somewhere else in a hurry. Unfortunately, right now, there aren’t many places to go. Maybe this is the sort of thing that would icentivize people to build a mesh network. If you could get your neighbors to all chip in towards the price of this higher tier, then, suddenly it becomes a little more worthwhile.

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Comments on “Lightning-Fast Connection Comes At Thunderous Price”

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dorpus says:

The Laws of AntiEconomics

Wouldn’t mesh networks be quickly taken over by spammers/hackers who can flood the bandwidth with crap? The smaller, dumber nodes wouldn’t have anti-spam software. Imagine being able to make every single cell phone and laptop in a 10-mile radius blip up messages about MAKE MONEY FA$T!!!

Many aspects of life do not lend themselves to the rules of market economies. In health care, those who need care the most are typically those least able to afford it. In the world of singles, those who express a need for relationships the most usually receive the least. Many aspects of the internet are anti-economic in nature as well. For the foreseeable future, people will keep having to invent schemes to force normal economic behavior out of such systems.

KR says:

lightnig fast connection...thunderous lack of mean

The really ridiculous part is a 3 Mb connection with nearly the same in the upstream was $30 a month in ’98 (the “early” days of cable modems).

So, let’s see…the cost of bulk bandwidth for the service providers has gone down immensely since then, the cost of the hardware has gone down immensely since then, and the provisioning/start-up costs have gone down immensely since then.

Yet, bandwidth to the user is now less, and cost is more. Only when you have a monopoly can you get away with that. Why this is not clear to FCC-Powell is beyond me.

The 3 cycles of Moore’s Law that have happened since those early days are benefiting the monopoly owners pocektbooks, but are blocked from reaching the end user. That’s what the FCC’s mission statement say they are supposed to prevent.

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