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Subscribers now have a visible limit on their internet usage

ISP giant Comcast announced an official, 250 GB usage cap for its subscribers Thursday, which it plans to deploy October 1.

"250 GB/month is an extremely large amount of data," reads its official release, "much more than a typical residential customer uses on a monthly basis."

The "median" usage per customer is within 2 - 3 gigabytes per month, says Comcast. In order to exceed the data cap, a customer would have to send more than 50 million e-mails, download more than 62,000 songs, or watch more than 125 standard-definition, 2 GB movies per month.

Comcast's new policy on data consumption appears to be just a part of an overall initiative to reshape the way customers use its network. Last week the company announced its "fair share" program, which is designed to throttle a customers' connection when they consume too much bandwidth. Rumors of a bandwidth cap had been in circulation for quite some time -- Comcast, AT&T, and Time Warner were reported to be experimenting with the concept -- but the actual thresholds implemented proved to be much higher than predicted.

With the increasing popularity of internet-based video and software distribution, ISPs throughout the world are finding ways to curb customers' internet usage. While data caps are commonplace outside the United States, publicly-announced limits are incredibly rare among the U.S.' largest ISPs. Particularly egregious users have run into invisible limits, however, and a handful of heavy downloaders have seen up to a year's suspension of service due to crossing the company's "invisible line in the sand" despite paying for service advertised as unlimited.

Curiously, the announcement hints that the invisible threshold may have been 250 GB all along. "This is the same system we have in place today," says the announcement. "The only difference is that we will now provide a limit by which a customer may be contacted. As part of our pre-existing policy, we will continue to contact the top users of our high-speed Internet service and ask them to curb their usage."

AT&T Wireless users who exceeded an invisible 5gb quota -- a lot, considering that the network is designed for PDAs and Smartphones -- quickly learned of similar sanctions last year.

Subscribers who exceed their quota "may be contacted by Comcast to notify them of excessive use."

"At that time, we'll tell them exactly how much data per month they had used. We know from experience the vast majority of customers we ask to curb usage do so voluntarily," reads the release. Customers will be notified of the change through banner ads posted on the home page, as well as flyers to be included in upcoming billing statements.

A previous attempt to curb subscribers' usage, which ended up selectively meddling in a few different types of internet traffic -- BitTorrent, namely -- attracted the ire of the Federal Communications Commission due to a "discriminatory" preference against certain kinds of data. After almost a year of this, Comcast answered the FCC's demands with a handful of new programs designed to clamp down on excessive usage regardless of the protocols involved.

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Hmm. . .
By Fronzbot on 8/29/2008 7:59:15 AM , Rating: 2
I wonder if they just set that 250GB limit that "high" just so people would say "that's not so bad, I can live with that."

I hate using "slippery-slope" logic, but this will only lead to more restrictions whether it be this company or another.

Guess the age of net-neutrality is really starting to come to a close. . .

RE: Hmm. . .
By aegisofrime on 8/29/2008 8:06:11 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not sure how the ISP market is in the USA, since I'm not American, but I wonder if current Comcast subscribers can show their displeasure by switching to another ISP?

RE: Hmm. . .
By Noya on 8/29/2008 8:10:54 AM , Rating: 2
I would say 99% of the people in the USA have the option of a single DSL provider, Comcast or dial-up within their city. So it's Comcast or DSL.

RE: Hmm. . .
By idconstruct on 8/30/2008 12:19:47 AM , Rating: 2
Not necessarily Comcast... In certain areas where I've lived the only available service is Road Runner... but the essence of the argument is the same; You have a choice between dial-up/DSL or whatever cable company has the monopoly on your area

RE: Hmm. . .
By therealnickdanger on 8/29/2008 8:12:15 AM , Rating: 2
In my area (Minneapolis, Minnesota), Comcast has a monopoly on cable-based broadband (of course, by offering phone and television service, they are able to silence any claims of a true monopoly). Qwest is starting to roll out a FIOS-esque service, but it's still not as fast as Comcast.

RE: Hmm. . .
By ebakke on 8/29/2008 9:34:13 AM , Rating: 2
That, and Qwest is no better than Comcast

RE: Hmm. . .
By GaryJohnson on 8/29/2008 8:36:48 PM , Rating: 2
If they'd just lose the interleaving...

RE: Hmm. . .
By imperator3733 on 8/29/2008 6:57:35 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, the Twin Cities (and I guess most cities in the US) don't have much choice as far as internet. We have 1.5Mbps Quest DSL at my house. Quest only has three DSL choices (784kbps, 1.5Mbps, 3Mbps) and their new fiber option. Comcast has insane prices - they advertise cable internet for around $33/month, but that's only when you get the combined package, so it's really $99. I wish there was some way of getting rid of the Comcast monopoly, because that's what it is, regardless of whatever else they provide.

RE: Hmm. . .
By StevoLincolnite on 8/30/2008 12:35:09 AM , Rating: 2
I guess this where Australia is lucky, generally if you have ADSL with Telstra or Optus or Internode, chances are you can choose another Half a Dozen ISP's or more which use part of there networks.

My Granny has a 1.5mb line, with a 500mb download limit (That counts uploads in the download limit) for $69 a month, after that she is speed reduced to 64k. - That's with Telstra BigPond though, I'm with WestNet and have a 40gb Download Limit during on-peak, 60gb during off-peak hours for $110 a month and runs at 1.5mb.
I was going to go with Dodo Internet, but there Customer Service is worst than trying to talk to Animals at a zoo, although they do have a nice plan which is 100gb on-peak and 100gb off-peak though.

There is a wireless plan Optus has which uses the 3G network, Basically you are given a Download limit ranging from a few hundred megabytes to around 10gb, after you reach that you are sped reduced to dial-up speeds, but here is the catch, if you visit a webpage or check an email, then log-off/shut the connection down, it is counted as 10mb minimum regardless if you only downloaded+uploaded 100kb.

And Cable? It's practically non-existent to a vast Majority of Australians unfortunately.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FITCamaro on 8/30/2008 9:30:00 AM , Rating: 2
Christ I'm glad I don't live in Australia. $110 a month for a capped 1.5 mbit/s DSL line? You can get business class service here cheaper than that.

RE: Hmm. . .
By gt1911 on 8/30/2008 8:49:59 PM , Rating: 2
The examples he's giving are not really that representative. I'm in Sydney and we have ISP's being much more competitive.

Virtually all ISP's are fighting in the $30-$50 range for ADSL2+ (24Mb max potential) connections. For that money you'll get somewhere between 2 - 20GB, depending on who you go with.

Telstra, the ISP he quotes is easily the most expensive for data in the country.

Coincidentaly, I spend $110 a month as well, but for that I have two ADSL2+ lines teamed together giving me a stable 34Mb and I have a peak quota of 55GB. I usually don't hit the quota unless I am hitting the downloads pretty hard.

We have a great tool for working out which ISP to use. It's called Whirlpool ( and it is a free service which shows you all the ISP's available to you and compares all their plans.

RE: Hmm. . .
By mattclary on 8/29/2008 8:44:46 AM , Rating: 2
I'm sorry, but putting a 250GB cap on is just NOT going to affect 99% of people. That is a pretty freaking huge amount of data to use in a month.

I don't think we will see caps inch down much either, DSL has a hard time competing on speed, but they can compete on a cap.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/29/08, Rating: -1
RE: Hmm. . .
By MrSmurf on 8/29/08, Rating: -1
RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/29/2008 4:53:54 PM , Rating: 1
I have a good life, thank you :-) How many different countries have you lived in? And how many have you visited with your pals? Probably not that many (if you've ever been outside your own country that is). I go every other year to the States to visit family there and most of them have Comcast, that's why I'm interested.

And no, downloading music or movies shouldn't be illegal. That's just trying to prevent something that in the long run can't be prevented, more or less how musicians felt when phonographs and the radio appeared: they thought that their jobs would disappear because nobody would go to their concerts anymore.

Access to culture should always be available for everyone (just like libraries), so what better way than by P2P?
You can always go to concerts if you're a fan of the artists, or go to the cinema if you're a fan of the director, actors or the story... so no, the artists aren't going to disappear because of it. There will always be good artists willing to actually work for earning money (and not just making 2 good songs and living out of them for the rest of their lives).
As for the music labels... the less middlemen there are, the better for everybody. It's a basic economical principle, but the big-ass middlemen have too much power and want to convince people that it's wrong to live without their (unwanted) services, and that you have to actually pay for receiving culture.

Access to culture and knowledge shouldn't be only for the wealthy, it should be a universal right.

RE: Hmm. . .
By wvh on 8/29/2008 10:19:33 PM , Rating: 1
While I totally agree with the basic premise of your post, realistically there are technical limits – fair or not. If everyone would download 600Gb, the pipes would saturate pretty quickly, especially in some of those places in the US where the powerline and telecomunications infrastructure are dangerously outdated (as far as I know anything about that).

If access to broadband is a universal right (as you claim), it should also be ensured that everyone gets a fair share of the bandwidth. Internet capacity isn't infinite. Hence I think it's reasonable to expect people who use vastly larger amounts of bandwidth to subscribe to a more expensive service.

Ofcourse, it's up to individual countries and states to ensure the local infrastructure can keep up with technological advances and hence demands, but frankly, that isn't my problem, nor are the local monopolies in some countries and states.

RE: Hmm. . .
By ElBrujo on 8/30/2008 12:29:30 AM , Rating: 2
Traveling is a form of "access to culture". Why aren't you trying to insist on your right to free travel?

Your reasoning is the biggest load of cr*p I've heard in a long time. The most shameful part of it is how you forget that your wealth is what enables you to download movies that aren't yours, yet you imply that you aren't wealthy. Then you bring up how much you travel (as if your culture were relevant), and at the same time forget that it's your wealth that enables you to travel. Too bad that traveling doesn't teach morals.

Most of the time I hear a new justification for download of IP that isn't yours, the person tries to use a perspective that's remarkably one-sided. Try imagining for a moment that you're doing something that someone else thinks is a luxery of the wealthy, and so that justifies some crime against you. If a little kid in the ghetto came and stole your iPod, would you say, "Aw, shucks, he deserves free access to culture, he can have mine"? If you were fool enough to say so the first time, how many times would it have to happen before you changed your mind?

It may be an economic inevitability, but until the model changes, saying something should happen doesn't make it so. Try using that argument in court when you've violated a speed limit everyone thinks ought to be changed.

It's funny how people think that such and such ought to be a "universal right" as long as it doesn't cost _them_ any money. The reality is that there is no free lunch, and that everything has a price; just because you aren't willing to pay it doesn't justify your taking it.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/30/2008 8:06:58 AM , Rating: 2
Cheap travel is starting to exist. Madrid-Munich+Munich-Madrid = 43 euros. That seems pretty cheap to me :-) Slowly but surely, access to culture is getting more universal.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/30/2008 8:13:17 AM , Rating: 1
Downloading music isn't stealing.

You have an apple.
I take your apple.
You no longer have an apple.

That is stealing.

You have knowledge about something.
I learn it.
You still have your knowledge and we both benefit from it.

That is NOT stealing. I can steal a wheel, but I canNOT steal the knowledge of what a wheel is.

RE: Hmm. . .
By enlil242 on 8/30/2008 12:18:21 PM , Rating: 4
Then learn to make your own music / movies / software / wheel, instead of stealing the blood and sweat from the person who made it in the first place.

While you were working at McDonald's earning money, the person responsible for what you find valuable enough to steal does not, thus needing support from the people who use their handiwork.

Your example makes no sense and makes you a fool.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/30/2008 1:43:20 PM , Rating: 1
Actually, other than being a computer science student, I've been playing the clarinet for 16 years, 6 of them professionally. I've never worked at a McDonald's, although I have worked for 3 years as an English teacher for the University of Salamanca, if that helps.
My reasoning does not make me a fool, it just makes me more socialist than you. I still don't know why people in the US are so afraid of socialism, when it works so well in Norway, Iceland, etc.

RE: Hmm. . .
By twhittet on 8/31/2008 5:48:06 AM , Rating: 2
Ok - so I'm not a big fan of the RIAA, but, your logic seems a little flawed. By listening to songs on P2P, people gain interest in the band, and go to their concerts, thn making them money on something they have worked and sacrificed to create. If you download a band that never comes to your country, how do they benefit? So, they work their ass off, and because music is a cultural thing, they don't deserve any compensation from possibly hundreds of millions of people that enjoy their work but don't go to a concert. The system is admittedly flawed, but thinking you have a "right" to get everything for free is sadly worse.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/31/2008 10:05:22 AM , Rating: 2
If they don't come near me and I can't go to were they're playing... I guess it's their fault. They should earn money working. Singing a song and living out of it without giving concerts is a thing from the past. Artists have to earn their pay, and that's working. Musicians have to play all over the world if they want to earn money from all over the world. If they only want money from the US, then they'll just do concerts in the US, right? Some Spanish singers go to America to do concerts in latin-america and earn some money there. I see nothing wrong there. I see no flaw there. Good musicians enjoy the fact that people listen to their music, and give all the concerts they can all over the world to get to the people who really enjoy their music. Nothing wrong there.

RE: Hmm. . .
By abzillah on 8/29/2008 1:07:48 PM , Rating: 5
This will definitely affect my family, because we have 5 computer in my house and we go over 250GB in a month. My two brothers and I play games online, we watch TV shows online, Movies and surf the net. When I have friends and family visiting, they often bring their laptops and do their work here too.
More than anything this will affect online movie rentals like Netflix, which we were planning on using more often. This will affect TV companies such as NBC ect, because now they cannot put good quality shows online. NBC had millions of hits on it's webpage to watch the Olympics clips.
Oh how I wish there was another company that provided better bandwith, good price and no freaking limit.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Souka on 8/29/08, Rating: -1
RE: Hmm. . .
By rudolphna on 8/30/2008 9:57:26 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. I too was worried about this limit, but as much as i beleive "unlimited IS unlimited (or should be) 250GB really isnt that bad, for most users. I probably transfer between 80-120GB per month, depending. OccasionallyIll download an entire TV series (legal of course) through utorrent, for about 18GB. Normal usage comes out between 5-10GB per day, between all the computers in my house.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Polynikes on 8/29/2008 10:57:28 AM , Rating: 2
Practically every geographic area in the US has one option for cable internet, one for DSL, and that's it. There are a few areas where Verizon is rolling out their FiOS service, but it's rare. I really hope they can spread it a lot more, because if you want the fastest connection possible, cable is the only choice for most people.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Souka on 8/29/2008 7:02:20 PM , Rating: 2
I live a few miles East of Seattle, WA. Comcast cable and Qwest are our only real broadband providers. (ClearWire is here to, but pales in bandwidth and latency compared to Comcast and Qwest so forget that...)

Anyhow... Qwest offers only 1.5Mbps service in most of its area...Fiber is coming, but no ETAs or offical news annoucements of solid value.

I've called Verizon abotu FIOS but got a long story on how the CAN NOT ENTER AN AREA THAT QWEST has coverage! This is due to some old FCC ruling to protect smaller ma-bells from being pushed out. That sucks!

So my Uncle gets Verizon FIOS for $30/month... and has Cable and DSL providers available. But I get jack...sorry, Comcast as my only real broadband option for under $70 (paying $45/mo now).

Oh well... Maybe QWest will go bankrupt and Verizon can move in....

RE: Hmm. . .
By Some1ne on 8/29/2008 12:27:39 PM , Rating: 2
but I wonder if current Comcast subscribers can show their displeasure by switching to another ISP?

They can, I did years ago when I noticed my connection would start throttling whenever I used BitTorrent. I contacted their support about it, and they completely denied any sort of bandwidth limiting was in place, so I decided "fuck this shit" and switched to SpeakEasy. And then about a year later the stories about Comcast's "data discrimination" policies started coming out.

I'm glad I switched, and I'll never use Comcast for Internet service ever again.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of Comcast customers are going to be either too non-tech-savvy to understand why they should switch, or too lazy to actually follow through with switching. Comcast will suffer almost no consequences for rolling out their quota system, and as a result, other ISP's will start following suit. It's only a matter of time now.

RE: Hmm. . .
By soloman02 on 8/29/2008 4:06:08 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately, the vast majority of Comcast customers are going to be either too non-tech-savvy to understand why they should switch, or too lazy to actually follow through with switching.

Also a lot of users have no option to switch. I have no option for another ISP. Comcast has a complete monopoly on broadband access in my area. There is a DSL hub in another town over, but ADSL2 has a max range of 20,000 line feet which we live just outside that. The older DSL versions have even less range. So for me and many others in rural parts of the US it is Comcast or dial up. As much as I hate Comcast, F*** dial up.

We could get satellite, but the latency for games is insane (an 89,000 mile trip for my data is totally unacceptable), not to mention losing the signal if there is a thunderstorm or high winds.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Zoomer on 8/30/2008 9:13:55 AM , Rating: 2

RE: Hmm. . .
By therealnickdanger on 8/29/2008 8:08:34 AM , Rating: 2
Look at it this way, 250GB is massive and historically, things only get bigger. So you can DL 120 2GB movies... that's 50 HD movies.

I'm not happy that they set a cap at all, BUT at least it's not a gray area anymore! Y'know, if ISPs are going to start enforcing this, they will have to supply a "metering device" so that you can keep an eye on your usage. Either a website to log into and view usage, or provide customers with modems that display the bandwidth used.

Hmm, I wonder if I can download that 61GB Star Trek TNG torrent before October 1...

RE: Hmm. . .
By RockinZ28 on 8/29/2008 8:12:49 AM , Rating: 2
Bet Charter will follow. Haven't got a call yet about excessive use, but there are movie/games forums that I can only access through a proxy now.

RE: Hmm. . .
By threepac3 on 8/29/08, Rating: 0
RE: Hmm. . .
By Aloonatic on 8/29/2008 11:23:23 AM , Rating: 5
Your ISP is problably not who you should be concerned about contacting you.

As you are downloading all the Star Trek: Voyager episodes, you could probably plead insanity if the feds come knocking at your door however?

RE: Hmm. . .
By plonk420 on 8/29/2008 2:17:01 PM , Rating: 1
agreed. Paramount is mean motherf-... DMCA notice and disconnection (thanks to qwest) from a SINGLE TVRip ep because my parents' VCR recording was shit quality.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Nik00117 on 8/30/08, Rating: 0
RE: Hmm. . .
By MrSmurf on 8/29/2008 12:19:57 PM , Rating: 2
You can download it after Oct. 1 and still have plenty of room...!!

RE: Hmm. . .
By wempa on 8/29/2008 12:41:43 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, it's nice to have a number ..... and one that is very high. Even with all the movies, games and other things I download, I don't even come close to 250GB a month. I applaud them for clearing up this gray area.

RE: Hmm. . .
By mikeyD95125 on 8/29/2008 6:03:32 PM , Rating: 2
Errr 250GB is not 50 HD movies. If HD movies were 5GB a piece there would be no point to blu ray.

So does the price drop now because I now don't have access to unlimited bandwidth? nope

RE: Hmm. . .
By walk2k on 8/29/2008 7:17:22 PM , Rating: 2
Most (legal) HD movie rentals (ie Xbox, Playstation) are around 6-7GB (MPEG4)

At that rate you could watch about 35-40 HD movies a month.

If you are illegally downloading Blu-ray discs you have a lot more to worry about than having your service disconnected.

RE: Hmm. . .
By therealnickdanger on 8/29/2008 8:15:41 PM , Rating: 2
Most HD movies off Xbox Live are 4.5GB. They are 720p, not 1080p, and are heavily compressed. They still look good though - not Blu-Ray good obviously. Sheesh.

RE: Hmm. . .
By afkrotch on 8/29/2008 8:12:34 AM , Rating: 2
For most ppl, that's not bad at all. 250 gb is a pretty high limit. I'm probably pushing around 150 gb at most, in a month and I download a lot (won't happen that often though). This would be tiny for a mass p2p, who likes to upload anything and everything all the time.

That or they'll shrink the amount little by little. At least we aren't in Australia. They have such a low limit. Like 5-10 gig. I'd be done within a day, sometimes. Yesterday I downloaded like 7 gig.

RE: Hmm. . .
By aegisofrime on 8/29/2008 8:26:47 AM , Rating: 2
Are you sure about that? 5GB per month download limit? That sounds awfully little. In comparison, my MOBILE phone data plan bundles 50GB of bandwidth.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FoundationII on 8/29/2008 12:14:08 PM , Rating: 2
In Belgium there are basically 4 types you can take, 1GB/month for 30$, 4GB/month for 45$, 20GB/month for 60$ and 60GB/month for 90$ (converted from euros).
If you want more than that you have to go in buisiness plans, and those are expensive (130GB = 330$)
They recently doubled all the limit so there aren't any changes expected soon either.

So yeah, a lot of countries are having tiny download limits compared to what the US has. I'd be very happy with a download limit like that.

RE: Hmm. . .
By heffeque on 8/29/2008 5:04:47 PM , Rating: 2
That kind'a sux. I was in Maribor (Slovenia) last year and I had a 35/10 Mbps connection (100/100 Mbps for inside Slovenia) and... no bandwidth cap. I'm now in Spain and I have an 18/1 Mbps connection and no bandwidth cap either. I know that there is a bandwidth cap for international data in Portugal and that if you want to take it off you have to pay more, but... I just can't imagine that there are no companies without bandwidth cap in such a developed country like Belgium.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FITCamaro on 8/29/2008 8:45:27 AM , Rating: 4
I do agree that 250GB is a pretty high limit. But the problem is that things only get bigger over time. So this limit needs to as well. I mean I downloaded the Warmhammer Online beta which was 10GB. No I don't think the average person will exceed 250GB a month. Even the average tech geek unless they're pirating HD quality movies all month.

But what about 5 years from now? Or 10? By then average PC games will likely be in the 20-30GB range. HD video will be commonplace. Web pages are only getting bigger. And more.

I fear that this cap will basically let Comcast say, "Well we don't need to upgrade our available bandwidth anymore since we've got people locked down to 250GB." and for the next 10 years or more it'll stay there.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Digimonkey on 8/29/2008 9:01:19 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with what you're saying that data amounts only increase over time. I remember back in the day trying to figure out how any one could possibly fill up a 1 gig hard-drive, but back them games only took up about 5-10 megs.

However, I believe they set the cap based on average usage so in the future will raise it if that average usage start's hitting their limit. I don't think they want to anger any of their customers, especially those with other internet provider options.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Cheapshot on 8/29/2008 9:02:26 AM , Rating: 3
and the question comes to my mind... how will this affect online gaming? Does gaming cause the meter to tick?

RE: Hmm. . .
By 67STANG on 8/29/2008 5:31:04 PM , Rating: 2
Yes. Your online game is using bandwidth... Don't know how you could crest 250GB gaming though.

RE: Hmm. . .
By rudolphna on 8/30/2008 10:04:50 PM , Rating: 2
yeah, WoW really doesnt use much bandwith. I can play it all day, and I only see maybe 40MB downloaded and like 8MB uploaded. Not bad at all. It would be impossible to top 250 on online gaming like that.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FITCamaro on 8/30/2008 9:37:45 AM , Rating: 2
Online gaming, while a constant steady stream of packets, is using a few kilobytes at a time. You'd have to be gaming 24/7 every day of the month to severely impact your bandwidth usage.

I mean assuming you were sending and receiving 6KB every second with constant usage 24/7 for 30 days would be about 15.5GB. 6KB is an extremely high estimate I think. And even at that you still have plenty of bandwidth left for other things that month.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Lord 666 on 8/29/2008 9:14:01 AM , Rating: 3
Its not that small when you consider around October Netflix will enable Xbox 360 streaming movies. I only view this as Comcast trying to prevent users from taking advantage of the free streaming movies from Netflix. Considering the large population of Xbox users, there will be many more people watching the movies on their TV.

Masher - If you want an IP idea, how about this one. Instead of the Killawatt device that measures electrical useage, you can create a home meter that measures broadband home useage.

With our EVDO Rev A cards, we hover around 2.5gigs monthly just using Cisco VPN and the electronic health record application. Citrix/RDP isn't an option because paper charts are scanned using a thick client on PC.

Breakdown of legal usage for most users;

1. Xbox Live downloads (60mb - 1gig per download)

2. Xbox Live voice and gameplay (Voice has to be around 30k and about 200-300k for interaction)

3. Netflix streaming movies (Xbox and from their website) 1-2 gig each?

4. Gaming - Should be around 30k voice stream and maybe tops 200-300k interaction.

5. Telecommuters - Working on client environments from home and retrieving email/voicemail could range drastically. Considering I have some work engagement 7 days a week (leave computer on to just sync data) Lets peg this at 500mb a day.

6. Webcams - 300 to 400k total steams?

7. Comcast VoIP - does this count against the limit?

RE: Hmm. . .
By Mitch101 on 8/29/2008 10:51:32 AM , Rating: 2
I would vote you up for that if I didn't already post and add to it.

3. Netflix streaming movies (Xbox and from their website) 1-2 gig each? (Est 700-1.4gig each)
(HD movies will be even more and possibly a deal breaker) (Est 4-9gig each)

8. TV Shows. My HD Direct TV unit has Video on Demand and we download a lot of shows to catch up on series or build interest in a series. If we get hooked like Dexter we watched the first 2 seasons in about a month all from VOD.

Patches but this can vary. Mainly referring to Wow and Windows service packs not to mention playing online as you already have.

9. Napster/iTunes/Rhapsody - They include video as well as music.

Good pointing out Voip services.

I did the calculations below and I came to the conclusion that if your skeptical about the limit then its time to consider DSL. Heck I might only get 3meg bandwidth but will never have to worry about a 250 gig limit. I run a real estate website and a backup of the site can eat that up very fast.

RE: Hmm. . .
By walk2k on 8/29/2008 7:24:14 PM , Rating: 2
The cap does not apply to Comcast phone service no.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FITCamaro on 8/30/2008 9:42:54 AM , Rating: 2
I don't believe Netflix plans to offer HD movies on its streaming service anytime soon. Most people don't have the connection for it to work properly.

And wouldn't your Direct TV box get the show through the satellite network? Not your internet connection? I don't have satellite so I don't know.

And if you run a real estate website, you should probably just get a business class connection. I doubt those would be capped.

RE: Hmm. . .
By GaryJohnson on 8/30/2008 9:53:26 AM , Rating: 2
And if you run a real estate website, you should probably just get a business class connection. I doubt those would be capped.

Especially if doing backups of that site can eat up 250GB fast. Either you have a huge site (like or something) or you seriously need to consult someone about optimizing your media for the web.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Azzr34l on 8/29/2008 11:44:23 AM , Rating: 2
Just a note about Telecommuters such as myself - I suspect most full time Telecommuters that work for a larger organization whose employer pays their phone and IP bills are on commercial accounts, not residential ones. The commercial accounts are unaffected by this because of the SLAs in place. I suppose they could modify the SLAs in the future though....

RE: Hmm. . .
By Lord 666 on 8/29/2008 3:13:53 PM , Rating: 2
Yet the commercial accounts are still going over the same wire within the same node... completely destroying Comcast's argument in the first place.

I used to work for Comcast just went cable modems were being introduced. The infrastructure is simply not there to keep up with demand in certain areas. However, this comes down to Netflix and VoIP services competing with Comcast.

RE: Hmm. . .
By natebsi on 8/29/2008 12:39:20 PM , Rating: 2
I don't disagree that there a legal uses for excessive bandwidth usage, but come on now... Do you really do all of those things all day, every day? 250GB's works out to about 8GB's PER DAY! That is a tremendous amount of data to use consistently, and I the overwhelming majority, well over 99% I suspect, would never come close to using that in a month.
I'm not saying I agree that bandwidth should be limited, but I can see comcasts point.

That said, I think this suck, not because of the cap, but because as others have pointed out, this is just a first step. Once they get users used this idea, they will be much more emboldened in lowering that limit in the future should they see fit.
Even worse, you can bet every other ISP will be watching this closely (just like airline fuel surchages started by a single airline). If there isn't too much fallout, I bet others will follow suit.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Alexstarfire on 8/29/2008 2:55:49 PM , Rating: 2
Multiplayer gaming doesn't even come close to 200k, let alone 300k. If you mean kbps.... then perhaps. But games don't even use 100KB/s.

And I'd be very interested in that device. I'm on the internet like 24/7 just about... thanks to people stopping the recording on my shows on the DVR. Those bastards force me to go download the latest episode after it's been uploaded.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Darkk on 9/1/2008 1:12:15 AM , Rating: 2
7. Comcast VoIP - does this count against the limit?

Nope. It's a separate service. Comcast is putting a cap on DATA service for your PC, not your phone long as VOIP is being provided by Comcast.

Even you have Vonage, I wouldn't worry too much as it takes up little bandwidth anyway.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Aloonatic on 8/29/2008 11:03:48 AM , Rating: 2
wow, 250 GB seems a pretty good "limit", assuming anyone actually reaches that of course.

I quess 0.01% of their customers might.

Traffic limits are pretty common over here in the UK, are they oft seen in the US?

Typically, "full speed" broadband (~8Mbps) is free when bundled with TV and phone at a fairly reasonable price with a limit of 2GB and many people are happy with that, but they are typically households without children.

Then there's the 40GB to 80GB range which is the most common, where you start to pay for your internets and then you can pay extra for "unlimited" which I guess is what this 250 GB is replacing?

I think I'm on the 40 GB limit, have never gone over it with my current provider, I did go over the 2GB one for a few months, which got me a couple of advisory letters and the I was forced to trade up package, which was fair enough.

It does seem that increased demand will be happeneing for many hoseholds though, especially children.

The days of just 1 computer attached to the interwebs is over in thees housholds. Now many have a PC, a couple of laptops, a games console and then mobile phones, PSPs and DSs all sucking in the packets and spitting them back out again.

Not to mention the doenloadable HD TV/Films that we have been promised, as FitCam pointed out and a move towards full games being available for download.

The BBC iPlayer is a big hit over here (apparently) and people will only want it to get better, quality wise, which is going to cost someone.

I guess ultimately, as demand increaes these caps are the only way realistically for ISPs to enable growth in net use to happen but seem a bit of a weird way of doing it, allowing more to use the internet more by imiting the amount that some use it.

It's only fair that you pay for what you use though.

In 5 or 10 years time there will be a whole load of new contracts out there, this one will be but a distant memory and we'll all be fighting for our lives in a post apocolyptic ocean world with each other and homeless polar bears by then anyway.

/rambling Friday afternoon comment

RE: Hmm. . .
By mars777 on 8/29/2008 7:20:04 PM , Rating: 2
Uhm, here in Croatia we have 20$ for a FLAT 2MB line up to 16Mb FLAT lines for 80$. Non flat costs half of that.

And i thought these were insane prices...

RE: Hmm. . .
By Aloonatic on 8/30/2008 4:01:59 AM , Rating: 2
That is quite expensive, if they are monthly fees and no discounts or other charges apply.

On ADSL networks:

For about £12/$25 a month you can get unlimited* 8Mb broadband in the UK, including free weekend and International phone calls and line rental**.

This is "up to" 8Mb of course, averages around 5Mb or 6Mb typically.

On Cable:

2Mb = £10/$20 a month.

10Mb = £17/$35 a month.

20Mb = £29/$60 a month.

Cable can be half price all year if you take one of the telephone packages, and extra discounts for taking TV too. They can be haggled with quite easily as well.

Both ADSL and Cable:

Most companies offer half price for the first 6 months of the 12 month contract.

All come with free wireless router.

Switching is a lot easier and faster now as the regulator got on their backs about it and usually takes a couple of weeks at the most, depending on the calibre of muppet you get on the phone when you as for migration codes and set up your new account.

If anyone's interested:

I'm with SKY and get all the traffic I need at 8Mbps (actualy around 6 Mbps so I am lucky really), plus sat TV, plus phone line, plus line rental for around £33/$70 a month.

Could be cheaper now and I will be changing when my contract runs out soon.

With these bundles on the ADSL networks speed can vary quite dramatically in different areas. SKY seem to be quite hit and miss, luckily for me they are pretty good where I live.

* Unlimited comes with a "fair usage" policy of course, but that typically means that if you are sending or receiving a lot of data your connection will be slowed during peak hours.

** Is "line rental" just another one of those extra charges that we accept in the UK only or are people in other countries conned into paying for the up keep of a network which isn't updated regularly, even though they have charged you for doing this for years and years and years and now say that they need to charge more to update the equipment for "the information age"?

RE: Hmm. . .
By nafhan on 8/29/2008 8:12:39 AM , Rating: 5
Usage limits and network neutrality are not the same thing. Throttling bittorrent while letting other traffic flow freely is an example of violating network neutrality.

RE: Hmm. . .
By mpjesse on 8/29/2008 1:10:24 PM , Rating: 2
Two of the largest net neutrality groups, and, disagree with your shortsighted definition of network neutrality. Both have published opinions that bandwidth metering is part of network neutrality. Read for yourself:

Bandwidth caps are just a subversive way of limiting what you do and watch on the web. Watch too much HDTV on the internet and Comcast loses advertising revenue and viewers from it's cable TV business. Comcast is terrified that its cash cow, cable TV, will disappear because of internet TV devices. They're worried we won't have a need for cable boxes in the future.

Network Neutrality AND bandwidth metering ARE tied together.

RE: Hmm. . .
By GaryJohnson on 8/30/2008 9:47:50 AM , Rating: 2
By that same logic, connection speeds are also a subversive cap used to limit what you do and watch on the web.

RE: Hmm. . .
By FITCamaro on 8/30/2008 9:48:14 AM , Rating: 2
Even with internet TV, you'll still need a box of some kind hooked up to your television. Most people don't have a computer hooked up to their TV. And would be afraid of trying to set it up along with a remote.

RE: Hmm. . .
By omnicronx on 8/29/08, Rating: 0
RE: Hmm. . .
By weskurtz0081 on 8/29/2008 9:21:14 AM , Rating: 2
So, now you are the one who decides how much bandwidth people get to use? Also, it doesn't matter what plan they are on, the bandwidth will be coming out of the same lines, only difference is price and available bandwidth.

Anyway, if a service is advertised as unlimited, it shouldn't be limited. If they are going to sell an unlimited service for $100, they should lower the price on the limited one.

omni, no one is protecting anyone in here, this is only a message board.

RE: Hmm. . .
By omnicronx on 8/30/2008 2:02:24 PM , Rating: 2
omni, no one is protecting anyone in here, this is only a message board.
Then why do you care so much? I feel absolutely no pain for those that use their local ISP as a server or are constantly leeching. Don't get me wrong, I do my fair share of downloading, but why do you think ISP's had to put in place such rules as limiting torrents and other P2P sites? Having a cap like this makes the internet a better place for rest of the people that are not taking advantage.

And like it or not your contract is subject to change, its one of the first lines of the agreenment you signed when you bought your internet. And its not like 250G is unreasonable either, you are just complaining for the sake of it.

This is not the only issue either, I know for a fact that DSL companies don't see a need to expand their services to more rural areas just because the margins in doing so would be so one sided, that there would be no point. Maybe in the good ol US of A it doesnt make a difference, but here in Canada where communities can be quite far from one another, it does!

RE: Hmm. . .
By Moishe on 8/29/2008 10:31:40 AM , Rating: 2
I don't see this as a problem. ISPs have always said "unlimited" and then dropped certain users for using too much. To me that is flat out lying and should not be legal. By setting a cap they remove all ambiguity. If you are over the cap, you get suspended (potentially). If not over the cap, no suspension. It's simple to calculate, simple to appeal, simple to monitor.

If the caps were widely used in the U.S. we'd see competition based on those caps. This is a good thing and it adds another feature that an ISP can sell. I am able to save $15/month on my broadband bill because TWC finally offered packages. I never needed 5Mb but I had no choice but to pay the cash for it.

I'm all for setting clear limits where possible. It's better for the business and better for the consumer

RE: Hmm. . .
By Aloonatic on 8/30/2008 4:09:51 AM , Rating: 2
In the UK fair usage policies are made pretty clear on all "unlimited" offers.

These apply to broadband traffic use and have also cropped up in mobile phone contracts for "unlimited" calls, texts or data.

If someone breaches it there connection is usually just throttled during peak hours over here though. I don't think that people actually get cut off.

The use of "unlimited" is an obvious marketing term and you would have to be pretty naive to think that you can get away with anything, but it is misleading.

I am pretty sure that it was the industry regulator that has made them make it clear that "unlimited" is not really and the disclaimers are very clear and easily found.

If they aren't doing this in the States then that is a little naughty and I can see how people would be annoyed.

RE: Hmm. . .
By sprockkets on 8/29/2008 2:36:42 PM , Rating: 3
Seriously, if you run into the 250GB limit, you need a life.

RE: Hmm. . .
By Googer on 8/29/2008 7:32:01 PM , Rating: 2
All I can say is that Brighthouse networks has done a great job in providing the best possible service with no known bandwith limitations, fast technical support, and next day in home repairs.

If I had one complaint, it would be the low 384k upload speed they provide on my 6mb/s connection. Compared to FIOS that sells 2mb/s up and 10mb/s down for $5 less per month. Overall, I cannot really complain, BHN is great!

Still no servers though?
By n0b0dykn0ws on 8/29/2008 7:58:54 AM , Rating: 2
I'm curious to know if they will still forbid running a server at home that communicates over the internet.

Yes, I realize that they still want you to sign up for their higher-priced business class model for that, but if they're going to have a limit in place, why not let you run how you want?

Let the people who want faster response times/speeds still sign up for the business class.


RE: Still no servers though?
By blaster5k on 8/29/2008 8:21:07 AM , Rating: 2
Technically yes, but the server policy is a bit Nazi-ish to me. They don't want people hosting big web sites, FTP sites, etc. since they have lower upload bandwidth available.

With the advent of home servers though, I can see a lot of people using relatively low bandwidth servers in their homes just to do remote desktop, file transfers, and such. I know I'd rather have my data at home than up in the "cloud".

RE: Still no servers though?
By Ordr on 8/29/2008 8:35:26 AM , Rating: 1
Technically yes, but the server policy is a bit Nazi-ish to me.

What, exactly, does their policy have in common with Nazism?

RE: Still no servers though?
By Zandros on 8/29/2008 10:55:01 AM , Rating: 2
Authoritarianism seems like a candidate.

RE: Still no servers though?
By bodar on 8/29/2008 9:29:39 PM , Rating: 3
Are you dense? It's just a figure of speech. Here's a hint: The Soup Nazi also never committed genocide or started a World War.

RE: Still no servers though?
By vapore0n on 8/29/2008 8:29:01 AM , Rating: 2
I have set up a FTP and HTTP server and both worked great.
Even better since they increased uploads speeds.
Mine are not public though.

The new "cap" should take care of any concerns of servers taking too much bandwidth.

This totally acceptable
By SunAngel on 8/29/2008 10:43:41 AM , Rating: 2
250GB a month. I can not see anyone going over this. No one here downloads dozens of movies from iTunes/Vongo/CinemaNow each month, so it is going to be virtually impossible to go over the limit. A new release of Fedora Core occurs what - 4 times a year? For the .mkv/bittorrent thugs Comcast just said, "checkmate". You now have to pay more to play more. There is also a good chance as time goes on and legal files get bigger Comcast will increase the limit.

RE: This totally acceptable
By ckamc on 8/29/2008 1:43:21 PM , Rating: 2
250GB isn't enough

I just checked my bandwidth use-age on my router and found that I have already used over 195GB this month.... and I haven't even watched/downloaded that many HD MKV files... mainly a lot of ps3.

500Gb sounds a bit more acceptable for this modern HD era... pre-hd I would say 250gb is good enough.

RE: This totally acceptable
By plonk420 on 8/29/2008 3:42:31 PM , Rating: 2
the single MKV for the full Olympics opening was 25 or 27gb 720p AVC... so you may want to not say "files"

RE: This totally acceptable
By bodar on 8/29/2008 9:35:28 PM , Rating: 2
So do we need Family Plans if we plan to use a router? People forget that this is per household, not per person. What happens if your neighbor decides to crack your wi-fi and download his torrents all day? Overage charges for you, my friend.

RE: This totally acceptable
By SunAngel on 8/30/2008 9:52:59 AM , Rating: 2
This the exact reason, I'm sure, Comcast made it 250GB vs 50GB per month. I agree its not uncommon for as many as five individual computers in a household network at one time. But, even with so many computers and everyone being responsible and not downloading illegal material it is still virtually impossible to hit 250GB in a month. The absolutely only way to make it over this amount is p2p/bittorent video download. Even p2p/bittorrent music download would not go over the 250GB limit in a month. So, I feel the 250GB limit is much fair. Those that need more bandwidth will just have to pay for it so the rest of us won't have to foot their bills.

Someone with time to do the math?
By Mitch101 on 8/29/2008 8:20:36 AM , Rating: 2
Someone with time to do the math?

If I had a 56K modem downloading 24x7 how much data would be downloaded in a month?

If the modem beats it they they should offer the service significantly less that the cost of dialup because they are then offering a lesser service.

RE: Someone with time to do the math?
By Mitch101 on 8/29/2008 8:31:03 AM , Rating: 2
Ok I found a calculator.
punched in 240000Mb

Single-pair HDSL (S-HDSL) 758 / 24 hours = 31.58 (This is what comcasts service is about equal to)

Which means any of the following services are faster or anything about 758K is a faster service.

Consumer DSL (CDSL)
Very high-speed DSL (VDSL)
100 Base-T (fast ethernet)
1000 Base-T

Looks like Verizon/Windstream/AT&T and going to get a lot more customers.

By mikecel79 on 8/29/2008 10:22:50 AM , Rating: 2
Comcast broadband is usually about 10Mbps. According to the bandwidth calculator on DSL reports you could potentially download 2.9TB in a 30 day period assuming you were going at full speed all day for 30 days.

RE: Someone with time to do the math?
By nvalhalla on 8/29/2008 11:11:06 AM , Rating: 2
640MB a day with 56Kb dialup for 24 hours

18144000 or 18GB a month

220752000 KB, or 220 GB a year.

By nvalhalla on 8/29/2008 5:33:40 PM , Rating: 1
I was rated down for answering someones question? I didn't realize you guys hated math that much...

By JosefTor on 8/29/2008 8:26:03 AM , Rating: 2
Does anyone know how much data is used by a typical game played on a gaming console or PC? And is this limit per person? I can't imagine families with larger families having to use the same as a one person studio. I have a 4 person unrelated house and each of us have netflix accounts and 360's. I can only imagine that limit slipping by quick.

RE: Gaming
By AlvinCool on 8/29/2008 8:28:33 AM , Rating: 2
I don't think you can exceed this cap playing games, but my concern is can you exceed the cap by running a game server 24/7?

RE: Gaming
By Digimonkey on 8/29/2008 9:07:10 AM , Rating: 2
Online games usually only use a few megs per hour. Nothing to worry about. Now multiple netflix accounts may get you into trouble.

RE: Gaming
By 3kliksphilip on 8/29/2008 3:52:10 PM , Rating: 2
Games use hardly anything. Downloading patches, maps, textures etc does but when that's all over and done with, very little information is sent while the game is being played. I don't want to try and guess but you're looking in the region of 3 - 20 kbps for CSS, probably a bit more for MMORPGs.

We have 3 computers on most days, usually do about 45 GB a month. This includes an awful lot of youtube videos, about 10 GB of game downloads (OFF STEAM, not illegally) and about 6-7 videos (NOT ILLEGALLY, just... um... BYE!

By tastyratz on 8/29/2008 8:42:56 AM , Rating: 2
While they announced a 250gb cap... they did not announce what happens after that. Do you just get an innocent phone call like they make it appear? do you get 3 strikes? do they charge you over 250gb? do they throttle you over 250gb?
Most people don't know because they only push 1 tier, but comcast has MANY tiers for different speeds. they could charge xyz per gb for the 6mb service, and abc for the 1mb.

Is there going to be a cap for business customers? If residential customers want to use more than 250gb will they be required to get a business plan with expensive SLA premiums? or will they have a new "power user" package?

is 250gb combined bandwidth? is it only upload/download? What about customers already paying more for higher speed packages? Are they going to provide tools for users to go online and check their data usage for the month? What about a "low" warning?

Many questions here are left unanswered. We should certainly not settle for a provided scope of only "250gb or else"
While 250gb is a very reasonable limitation for "most" users it sets a precedent for data caps on home users. Comcast is huge and other providers will follow. Soon our internet could be like gas prices...

Have no illusion that it will stay this proportionally large.

Time will go on and 250gb limits wont go higher as capacity is needed... OR they will slowly lower the 250gb limit till its more restrictive. People will accept the idea of a high limit and in 6 months it could be dropped to 200gb, then 100, then 50... but they already got their foot in the doors with the limit so people wont rebel much at 250... whats a little more?

RE: incomplete
By tastyratz on 8/29/2008 10:19:09 AM , Rating: 2
I forgot to mention the services this WILL hurt.

What about voip? IPTV?
This is setting precedence. If caps start popping up in all flavors through providers as some sort of trend we may see the wonderful prospect of iptv killed before it takes off, and existing home voip will diminish.

RE: incomplete
By Staples on 8/29/2008 11:40:29 AM , Rating: 2
You can use VOIP 24/7 and you will not come anywhere near this limit. But iptv would use 200x more bandwidth. HD MPEG4 would use at least 2GB an hour.

RE: incomplete
By GaryJohnson on 8/30/2008 12:55:09 PM , Rating: 2
While they announced a 250gb cap... they did not announce what happens after that. Do you just get an innocent phone call like they make it appear? do you get 3 strikes? do they charge you over 250gb? do they throttle you over 250gb?

Maybe this is all just a PR FUD campaign designed to scare people into bandwidth conservation and/or scare high bandwidth users away from their service?

One possibility
By dickeywang on 8/29/2008 9:28:42 AM , Rating: 2
I think 250GB/mo is enough for average people, but what I am worrying about is that thing won't just stop here. I bet Comcast will soon put out more GB based plan, maybe something like 250GB for $34.99/mo, 100GB for $29.99/mo, 50GB for $19.99/mo.. It's like the cellphone plan, people tend to choose the lower one if they think it is enough, but when you exceed the limit, Comcast may send you a huge bill.

RE: One possibility
By on 8/29/2008 9:55:36 AM , Rating: 2
I think it will go the other way around. Watch them slowly lower the allowed limit to 150 and then 50GB and then 30 and start charging extra for higher usage. They mention the "normal use" of 3GB, that's their target. That's how a monopoly operates. Do you remember the airlines? First were gone free drinks, then free food, followed by free water and luggage. I hope they won't start charging for oxygen use onboard.

RE: One possibility
By weskurtz0081 on 8/29/2008 10:03:08 AM , Rating: 2
Do you honestly think you get anything for free on an airline? Even if you don't pay for the cost of the soda when you drink it, that stuff is averaged in to the cost of the ticket.... same goes with the food.

Download AND Upload
By Jay on 8/29/2008 9:21:26 AM , Rating: 2
As I read the article, I noticed it didn't say much about this being a Download Limit. And since it mentions sending e-mails in the scenarios, I'm assuming the 250 Gig cap is for Downloading and Uploading.

If you share torrent files for long periods of times, your ratio can easily be 2x what you downloaded. That can add up pretty quick.

I think this will impact Torrents significantly since people will drop off once they have downloaded a file so as not to suck any more badnwith from their "cap" than necessary.

RE: Download AND Upload
By JoshuaBuss on 8/29/2008 11:17:01 AM , Rating: 2
that's good then. torrents are exactly what Comcast is trying to curb with this.

Look ahead?
By invidious on 8/29/2008 9:30:20 AM , Rating: 2
My first computer had 8mb of ram and a 33mhz processor and 300mb of hard drive space. This was about 18 years ago. Now I have over a terabyte of hard drive space. One might assume the trend will continue.

250gb will be feeling very cramped very fast, give it 2-3 years when streaming HD video becomes plausable. Thats only about 25 movies a month in 1080p at the current HD resolution. If you have a 2160p screen by then (and yes that format already exists for extra large TVs) then it may be as few as 10 movies a month.

RE: Look ahead?
By jconan on 8/29/2008 11:32:28 PM , Rating: 2
The caps are starting to show that businesses doing entertainment and providing telecommunication are conflicts of interest. If businesses don't want users using alternative solutions they shouldn't be in the business of providing conflicting business products. It's like Sony on 1 hand trying to provide content and on the other hand trying to create products that does not bite them back i.e. limited codecs and DRM.

Questions about this...
By bravacentauri83 on 8/29/2008 11:01:07 AM , Rating: 2
Forgive me if these were obvious:

Does this apply to any Comcast account? (i.e. residential, business)

This includes both download AND uploads?

RE: Questions about this...
By FredEx on 8/31/2008 5:23:40 AM , Rating: 2
Not all accounts. Business class accounts are exempt. It does include down and up.

Comcast has said only 1% should be effected. That is the amount that exceed the cap now.

I have a Comcast Blast account, 16M/2M, and I'm on a lot and have not come close to that. I'm on medical disability and home most all the time, so I wonder what folks do that say they go to 500G. They can't be on Comcast doing that, they'd get on you before once you got around 250 to 300G. Especially if it was greatly effecting the others on your node.

Backing up files from dedi-server
By XtAzY on 8/30/2008 6:47:18 PM , Rating: 2
Ok 250GB is huge for an average user, but what if you have a dedicated server that has move than 250GB of data and you want to make a backup of that. You're pretty much screwed and you'll have to wait a month or more if you want to backup that huge amount of stuff. Guess it won't be easy to backup online files when this cap is enabled.

By sukiyasui on 8/31/2008 3:08:25 AM , Rating: 2
Thats what I'm saying. I currently have at least 300GB of data and I need to make a backup of this soon. How am I suppose to do that with the 250GB limit?

By Cheesypoofs on 8/29/2008 8:18:06 AM , Rating: 2
I unfortunately live in an area where our cable modem cap is set at 50GB, with a $.50 charge per GB thereafter (local telecommunications monopoly, gotta love those).

It's amazing that as more and more content is moved online that these telecommunication companies find it necessary to punish their paying customers for using their product too much.

Are we to assume that in the next decade or so we'll have to get an internet plan that resembles a cell phone plan? I can see it now... "you have no limitation as long as the site you connect to is on the same ISP"

By Rhodenator on 8/29/2008 10:34:54 AM , Rating: 2
I admit that before you read my post, I have no idea if the cap is bi-direction (Download + Upload = cap) or not. So please take that in mind.

I first want to argue the 250 GB cap. My wife and I have Comcast and we each have a PC. I only have an 80 GB HD and she has about the same size (we'll say 80 for comparative reasoning). I use 40~ GB's of my HD and she uses 30~ GB's of her HD. We just signed up for an online backup service. I had to do a FULL Upload backup for both machines (albeit compressed; though encrypted). Unfortunately, since we live in Florida, the Storm Tropical Fay kept taking my power and internet down. The backup client doesn't like losing the Internet in the middle for whatever reason and it had to restart. I've uploaded at least 100 GB's in the last two weeks LEGITIMATELY. I PAY for Comcast, I PAY for the online backup service. Now no, I haven't been contacted or cut off from comcast yet. However, I am a minority. Most people have 300 GB - 1 TB HD's now that I know and MOST of them have them full. If they decide to backup their drive like I am then they would hit the cap. This is just ONE example. I also play World of WarCraft... it requires P2P Sharing essentially to receive patches, which can be huge if you're reloading WoW.

From what I understand (though I haven't researched enough to prove that it's true), the U.S. is behind in bandwidth. We get excited with 10Mb - 20Mb where other countries have 50Mb - 100Mb. I also don't remember ever reading about them having any bandwidth caps or constraints, what's the deal with ISP's here at the US?

By Ananke on 8/29/2008 4:10:29 PM , Rating: 2
Dear guys, don't forget that recently a number of licenses in the radio specter have been sold. What happens is a good preparation of the ground for allowing Wi-Fi broadband to grow explosively :). ATT and Verizon couldn't be any happier. They would not have tough market start if the market eagerly needs their services :). And don't forget Google, which most likely will operate in the D spectre. And. on the top of everything Intel, which has enormous interest of getting into telecommunications with WiMax.
I can't blame Comcast, they don't have capacity and at the same time they want to sqeeze last minutes of monopoly to improve the margins. Probably Comcast has 2-3 years until total market screw :). So, be patient, better days are comming

By bill3 on 8/30/2008 6:06:40 AM , Rating: 2
Thats 10GB a day for 25 days, obviously since most months are around 30 days it's nearly 10GB a day. Yeah, that's plenty. Personally I would never come close to exceeding that, and I'm on the internet nearly 24/7 (although it's usually websurfing and not actually downloading..)

Absolutely Ludicrous
By Shimyr on 9/1/2008 6:03:08 AM , Rating: 2
For the outrageous prices Comcast charges there is no way they should be able to set a cap.

I was paying about $35 for 6 Mbps DSL from ATT where I used to live. Unfortunately, since I moved closer to my school and it's in an older area, ATT isn't available. My only option besides satellite is Comcast. They have 3 tiers:

$56.99 for 4 Mbps
$58.99 for 6 Mbps
$66.99 for 16 Mbps

I'm a student and I need to have some internet access, and obviously from those choices the only logical option costs nearly $70 per month. No matter what you choose you'll be paying about twice as much as DSL.

If they cannot arrange some sort of budget option they should be ashamed for setting any sort of cap. I don't even know if I've ever used that much in a month but the idea of charging customers out the a$$ then capping their usage is simply appalling to me.

Solution !!
By joex444 on 8/29/2008 3:50:52 PM , Rating: 1
Currently: Comcast + Usenet

Future: BD-ROM + Verizon DSL + NetFlix

Already got it covered with a Q6600 and 1.9TB of storage.

By charliesurfs on 8/30/2008 10:34:33 PM , Rating: 1
I would kill for a 250GB limit, here in Australia I have to pay extra to have my 40GB limit check it out:
And these are probably some of the cheapest prices too.
Telstra is to blame for this shit though.

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