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Time Warner Cables hopes to weed out excess usage with new billing system

When it comes to high-speed Internet, most people take for granted that their flat monthly fee will provide all the bandwidth needed for endless downloading.

Time Warner Cable (TWC), on the other hand, doesn't quite see things that way. Just as Best Buy labeled its bargain-minded customers as "Devil Customers," TWC has its own subset of customers that take the "all you can eat" approach to Internet access.

In order to discourage bandwidth gorging, TWC will trial a new billing system patterned after regular household utilities that we all have become familiar with. Like gas, water and electric bills, TWC will charge customers based on their usage instead of a flat fee.

The move should help TWC weed out the five percent of its customers which it says horde over fifty percent of total network bandwidth.

TWC warns that the network congestions problems will only get worse as more media content is made available online. People today are taking advantage of their high-speed Internet connections to download movies and television shows -- and we can't forget users who often frequent P2P and torrent sites to share/download content.

"Largely, people won't notice the difference," said a spokesman for TWC. "We don't want customers to feel they're getting less for more."

TWC will first roll out a trial of the new billing system in Beaumont, Texas later this year. If the tests are successful, TWC may apply the new billing scheme to all of its 7.4 million residential subscribers around the country.

Time Warner Cable isn't the first company that has attempted to curtail a small minority of its customers from hogging network bandwidth using P2P services like BitTorrent. Comcast chose the unsavory route of throttling bandwidth for greedy customers using P2P software. Unfortunately, Comcast's actions also hampered legitimate users of software like Lotus Notes.

Comcast's actions resulted in class-action lawsuit from customers and an official investigation by the FCC.

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5% of the 50% of the 45% .. .what?
By xxsk8er101xx on 1/17/2008 4:31:15 PM , Rating: 2
where do they get these numbers from? I have a hard time believing that 5% of consumers are using up 50% Total bandwidth.

Amazing how you can make up a number and everyone believes you.

About 95% of all cable companies makes up 50% of the 80% of crime... you must believe me because i just whipped out statistics out of my ass.

85% of you will believe that statistic while 10% of you will not - 5% are unsure. While 95% of that 85% think that the cable company is full of shit.

/end sarcasm

Time Warner is full of crap and just looking for ways to rape more i mean make more money ...

By PB PM on 1/17/2008 4:37:12 PM , Rating: 2
What business isn't? Companies wouldn't last long if they failed to find new ways making money. That said in this case, I can understand the logic, while not liking it at the same time.

I wouldn't want that system myself, since one of my room mates plays WOW all day long and downloads tons of stuff via P2P. I'd could try to make him foot the bill, but I cannot prove how much he uses.

By skitlets on 1/17/2008 4:43:39 PM , Rating: 2
No, she gets a special cologne... It's called Sex Panther by Odeon. It's illegal in nine countries... Yep, it's made with bits of real panther, so you know it's good. [...] They've done studies, you know. Sixty percent of the time, it works every time.

"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain

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