Time-Warner Begins Billing for High Data Use

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Aeolius, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. Aeolius macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2002
    #1
    My region is apparently next, for Time-Warner's "high data use" fees. Needless to say, having been a Time-Warner customer for years, I plan to drop them in a skinny minute.

    Today I will call them to see if my internet use over the past 3 months would have incurred fees, under the new plan. If so, I will say my goodbyes.

    What alternatives are there, for cable/tv/phone service, that you might recommend?
     
  2. moneywrangler macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    #2
  3. NightStorm macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    Whitehouse, OH
    #3
    I don't have a huge problem with the concept of tiered pricing based on bandwidth usage, but the thought that the "top tier" is limited to 40GB for $55 is quite ridiculous.
     
  4. jaw04005 macrumors 601

    jaw04005

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2003
    Location:
    AR
    #4
    Favorite quotes:

    "Customers will be asked to pay between $29.95 to $54.90 for up to 40 gigabytes, Dudley said. The $29.95 price would be lower than most Central Texas customers currently pay for the service."

    ...

    "The consumption model is a pretty common thing in life," Dudley said. "It's not that we've invented a new way to charge for a product."

    With a flat fee, moderate users are subsidizing those customers that are using the most bandwidth, Dudley said."

    The Time Warner Rep. makes it sound like they're doing everyone a favor by metering bandwidth. In reality, $29.95 is not a considerable discount with regards to Internet access in the United States. The $25-$30 price tier is normal for non-metered cable and DSL Internet access in most areas.

    I would understand his point if Time Warner was dropping the the price down to $10-15, but that's not what they're doing.

    The biggest issue with regards to the cable and phone companies providing the majority of American's Internet access is they have ulterior motives.

    What if Time Warner and Comcast are metering bandwidth not because of cost, but because they want you to watch (or subscribe) to their cable packages instead of downloading movies?

    All the more reason to drop Time Warner and move to another ISP if one's available in your area. Unfortunately, most areas only have two --- your local cable company and your local telephone company.
     
  5. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    London, England
  6. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

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  7. NightStorm macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    Whitehouse, OH
    #7
    I could live with 250GB, and I buy a lot of iTunes content. That is ~8.25GB/day.
     
  8. srl7741 macrumors 68020

    srl7741

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    Location:
    In my world
    #8
    Interesting

    I'm not sure how i feel about that article? I would think it could have a big impact on those who use iTunes, Netflix and other services for watching movies and TV.
    I will have to start paying more attention to this one.
     
  9. mohanman macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    #9
    If that occurred to me, I would switch to at and t get the 6mb DSL line, i know it wouldn't be as fast, but it still has no caps right?

    Mo
     
  10. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #10
    A friend and I discussed this yesterday. I could destroy that limit in a single day looking at various.. uh.. sites.

    IMO -> There are so many possible outcomes to this, both good and bad (more bad, I think).

    Good:
    • Lazy web developers and corps might do a better job at streamlining the bloat and fluff of their sites.
    • Smaller ISPs will get a boost in sales from people looking to escape the iron fist of internet oppression. Perhaps to the point where there's actual broadband competition for your dollar. Not just the same crap plans with a different corporate name.
    • Bandwidth hogs like torrents will be curtailed.
    • Useless and/or duplicate content will go away. Less pr0n sites. Less Worthless YouTubery™.

    Middling:
    • If they really plan on using this as an excuse to "incorporate new infratructure", then they better back it up with higher speeds and higher caps. I suspect this won't happen. There will be all sorts of excuses.

    Bad:
    • The bleeding edge of web development and internet lifestyles will be squashed.
    • Bandwidth wonders like torrents will be curtailed.
    • Less pr0n sites!
    • HD content and availability of TV and Movies online will be smothered.
    • More money in the pocket of already-evil-overlords.
     
  11. Rich1963 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #11
    Yellow gets my 'best, most comprehensive, least-trolling post award' for the day. I've been reading about this on a few sites, but that really does sum it up. I would highlight two things specifically, however, in your post that hit closest to the truth.

    A) nothing to do with maintaining and upgrading infrastructure (I call BS)

    B) Everything to do with not wanting to become a 'dumb pipe' provider and lose out on all of that revenue from the cable TV portion of the business.

    It might be slower, but DSL still has one or two advantages.
     
  12. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    #12
    Yeah, less dancing cats is always a good thing.
     
  13. Tilpots macrumors 601

    Tilpots

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    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    Carolina Beach, NC
    #13
    What BS. I subscribe to TWC's Roadrunner service. I'm dropping cable in June, guess I better look at a new ISP, too. Don't they understand the equation that less customers = less money?
     
  14. Rich1963 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #14
    I have honestly begun to subscribe to the notion they no longer care about competition or luring people away from competitors. I now think entities like TWC and Comcast are quite happy losing a percentage of consumers to the competitors if it means the remaining subscribers (meaning people who have no choice in broadband) are forced to bend over ever further when they need to extract their wallets.

    People lately are saying deregulation and competition didn't work and are what got us into this mess with the general economy. But TWC and Comcast prove otherwise. Deregulation is great, and competition even better; provided there are other foxes waiting to get into the hen house when the door is opened besides TWC and Comcast.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  15. hualon macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #15
    Here's what I'M doing about it: http://www.twcnc.com/template/contactus.cfm

     
  16. hualon macrumors 6502

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #16
    They DIDN'T get anything for free! They paid their monthly rate just like everyone else.
     
  17. eddyg macrumors 6502

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    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #17
    Ha! Join the rest of the world you whining swine. US carriers have always charged for traffic on international links into the USA. This has meant that overseas internet is generally metered.

    I think those who think they need 250Gb are full of it (pirating scum). I use 30Gb at US$0.70 per Gb. That is with full time telecommuting, iTunes store, torrents now and then, plus two teenagers and the silly stuff they look at over and over.

    Cheers Ed
     
  18. hualon macrumors 6502

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #18
    PIRATING SCUM
     
  19. Nobylspoon macrumors member

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    Mar 25, 2009
    #19
    I asked them about Earthlink, which they provide service for as well, and they didn't know if it would effect billing on it. I'v been meaning to switch over to Uverse anyways now that my 1/2 price promo is up with Earthlink.
     
  20. Alucardx03 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    #20

    So, does that make us Slingbox and Hulu users pirating scum?

    Personally, I signed up for TWC because of caps on other services. Between sending huge files back and forth online for work, streaming TV almost 12 hours a day to my comp (I leave it on in the background... I like to keep current), and catching up on missed TV with Hulu, I can tear through 250 GB in no time.

    I knew it was only a matter of time before this happened. When I first heard about net neutrality, I thought it was just a conspiracy theory. Now, it looks like the net isn't going to be the same place it used to be.
     
  21. TraceyS/FL macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    #21
    My kids could potentially have a usage of 3.9gb per day if i went to internet delivery for their schooling. That is nothing else we do normally....

    Overall does DSL then NOT have limits? I couldn't find anything in the Embarq terms of service. I need to move off of Comcast for financial reasons, but at least i have a higher limit (that i'm not approaching).

    This reminds me of Verizon's "unlimited" data on their wireless plans. HAHAHA.... not! (and now everyone else has those limitations).
     
  22. eddyg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #22
    Morally acceptable torrenting ;)

    Using Hulu is an interesting case. What my ISP does is have Akamai servers on their network, and then they don't charge for on-network traffic. This includes VoIP, gaming to their game servers, and any Akamai traffic, which includes iTunes store (I think - but am not sure), and OS updates etc.

    I would imagine that it would be good for Hulu to start colocating their servers on these ISP nets, and then the Hulu traffic would become free.

    The main reason for ISPs to charge for traffic is interconnection fees (outside of the USA) which is why onnet traffic is generally, but not always) free.

    Mind you the reasoning behind TW metering is slightly different, they don't have interconnect fees, they are instead just trying to squeeze more money from their existing infrastructure which is probably being stressed by some of the larger data users that you have over there.

    To provide a decent level of service they either need to reduce traffic to fit within their pipes, or add more pipes, in this economic climate the former is the only sensible path. In the mean time the additional revenue can be used to finance bigger newer pipes.

    Hitting those users who use the most is a sensible plan, since I'm sure they are in the minority and probably are least able to afford any increase. Therefore for the minor financial impact of losing <5% of their customer base they will extend the life of their infrastructure significantly.

    Cheers, Ed.
     
  23. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #23
    Not quite.

    http://ir.timewarnercable.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=365215

    Financially, they're doing just fine and frankly could afford to expand their infrastructure without resorting to monitoring. What is far more likely is they're banking on the future, where hi-bandwidth broadband use and requirements is spread far and wide. What better chance to try to control this now then metering?

    I am quite sure, when it comes right down to it (assuming they go with metering for all customers), this won't lead to better service or better rates or better quality bandwidth.
    This is solely to retain their choke-hold on cable-provided broadband in their areas.

    Side note..

    MAYBE they're trying to expand their HD offerings for cable TV and need the extra bandwidth? They're pretty far behind DirecTV in this field (and DTV knows and financially exploits it, I can assure you [monthly]). I didn't really consider this before and don't know if there's any impact at all.
     
  24. TraceyS/FL macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    North Central Florida
    #24
    Totally agree with this. And then, when they "up" the bandwidth they let you have - they look good. NEver mind it will still be less than what you had before they started.

    Hmmm, possibly. Comcast was offering a decent trade in from sat service. But they have to care and want to try to improve their services for this to happen. And well, i've never seen a cable company care about anyone but themselves - least of all the customer.
     
  25. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #25
    I am not a lawyer, and don't pretend to know anything about anti-trust..
    But in my mind, how is TWC (and others of their ilk (local carrier phone companies included)) NOT a monopoly? Theoretically, if I had cable TV into my home (I don't.. too rural), do I have a choice of providers? Nope. It's TWC or nothing if I want cable.
    To me, that's a monopoly.

    Perhaps not on the grand scale that is actually needed to classify it as a monopoly..

    I'm not sayin', I'm jsut sayin'..
    :rolleyes:
     

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