If Per Byte Pricing Is 'Only Fair' Why Have Telcos Ditched It For Mobile Data Plans?

from the hypocrisy-in-action dept

For the past couple of years, telcos and cable companies have been pushing for metered broadband, usually with the bogus claim that "it's not fair" for a light user to be subsidizing a heavy user. This is a neat little disingenuous trick that implies "light users" would see their bills decrease under metered billing plans. However, the same telcos pushing for metered broadband on connections are the same telcos who have wireless operators as well... and for mobile users, they're doing away with the metered billing option at the lower end, forcing everyone into a much higher priced all-you-can-eat model. Oops. Metered billing has nothing to do with fairness. It's an attempt by telcos to squeeze more money out of customers in a market where they often have little in the way of competitive options. Because, as we've seen, when there's real competition, it's a lot more difficult for providers to offer such plans.

Filed Under: metered billing, metered broadband, telcos


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Oct 2009 @ 5:30am

    RE: AC Post 1

    I believe you're confusing bandwidth and usage again.

    "In other countries where you don't have this problem more bandwidth is offered at lower prices."

    Remember bandwidth is a rate of transfer, so in what countries can you get more than my 20mbps FiOS connection? For $35 a month? Short of Japan and perhaps the Nordics? - Latin and South America? Let's use Mexico ... 1mbps ADSL, about $35 per month.
    - Western Europe? Let's use Ireland as an example ... Eircom charges 40 euro/month for up to 7mbps ...30 euro for up to 3mbps.
    - Australia? This is where bandwidth meets usage caps in pricing ... so you can get an 8mbps down connection (128kbps up) with 200MB/month for $30, if you want 25GB download it is $80/month ... and if you want to use the ultrafast cable service (30mbps in downtown Sydney and Melbourne, 17mbps where otherwise offered) it is $40/$90 respectively.

    So please ... don't just make vague pronouncements ... because with a couple of google searches I've just disproved your theory on price in three seperate regions of the world (in none of my examples is it better than in the US for comparable service), I have shown that only 1 of the 3 offers comparable bandwidth (at a price premium) and that one utilizes usage caps that total destroy any price comparison with the US at usage over 1GB.

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