backtop


Print 126 comment(s) - last by oe2k.. on Jan 21 at 6:13 AM

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.



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: A different way of charging may be needed???
By johnbuk on 1/17/2008 5:02:27 PM , Rating: 2
That rate that you quoted seems reasonable, but my problems with this are:
-There is not competition in my area. No DSL. No other cable providers. (Satellite is an option, but even more expensive and has a very restrictive cap). And I don't have a landline for dial up. Time Warner has a monopoly where I live. They have an exclusive deal with the city where they are the only cable company that can provide service. Every time that contract comes up, they offer another bribe to the city to renew it despite the protests from the citizens. I have to pay whatever TW asks or go without.
-Expanded basic cable plus internet costs me over $100/mth right now and I expect this will increase that as I'm guessing my usage exceeds whatever cap they will set.

If there was competition, then I wouldn't really care about this, but seeing as how Time Warner is my only viable option right now for internet service, I don't see this as anything more than a way to raise my already high rates.


By Frallan on 1/18/2008 7:36:54 AM , Rating: 2
Now that calls for legislation or a new city management...


"We’re Apple. We don’t wear suits. We don’t even own suits." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki