Metered Billing for Internet Service

Metered Billing for Internet Service

What a great honor for Beaumont, Texas, pride of the Golden Triangle. This powerhouse of industry has been chosen by Time Warner Cable as the test area for “Metered Billing” Internet service.

In order to serve you better, this technological breakthrough promises to make high-speed Internet service costs as predictable and understandable as your cell phone bill. The mind boggles. This is true 21st century progress for the consumer.

As described by FinancialWire:

. . . Internet subscribers in Beaumont, Texas . . . will have monthly allowances for the amount of data they upload and download.

Those who go over will be charged $1 per gigabyte. Metered billing was common during the Internet’s early days before AOL introduced unlimited usage in 1996 and is an attempt to deal fairly with Internet usage, which is very uneven among Internet subscribers.

Comcast, Time Warner’s larger competitor, stopped cutting off service to heavy BitTorrent peer-to-peer users after a barrage of criticism, and is now suggesting a monthly cap on service. BitTorrent users share video and audio, and are the heaviest users of bandwidth. Comcast is testing a system where service of heaviest users is slowed down. The lucky folks in Chambersburg, PA and Warrenton, VA, starting his Thursday, and Colorado Springs, CO will get this in a few months.

Roger Entner of Nielsen IAG told Cecilia King of the Washington Post that consumer resistance to variable pricing will be strong:

Flat rate and unlimited service is an endgame move. When you go to that kind of rate structure, you can’t go back.

Time Warner must feel that its mostly-minority, working-class subscribers in Beaumont are too exhausted by labor, heat, humidity, and breathing the hydrocarbon-rich air to put up much of a fight.

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here for one low price — free. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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2 Responses to “Metered Billing for Internet Service”

  1. Owners of the InterWebs « NotionsCapital Says:

    […] for interfering with subscribers’ access to websites. Net Neutrality? Kiss it goodbye. Look for metered Net rates, a concept pioneered by Time Warner Cable. Look for cable companies to block streaming video sites […]

  2. Owners of the InterWebs « NotionsCapital Says:

    […] from interfering with subscribers’ access to websites. Net Neutrality? Kiss it goodbye. Look for metered Net rates, a concept pioneered by Time Warner Cable. Look for cable companies to block streaming video sites […]

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