<rant id=”This may be hard to follow as it’s a rant”>
I’ve been a kid of the internet for what is now 16 years. Yes, half of my entire life! Yet, I’ve been fighting a losing battle with Internet Service Providers (ISPs) for most of that time.
This should seem like a simple service, I pay you money for a connection to the internet, you hook is up and leave me alone. If I want that connection to be faster, I pay a little more money, simple.
I think the fundamental question that needs to be answered is; What are they selling? Are they selling speed or are the selling data?
This concept seems to be changing over the years that I’ve been on the internet.
- On dial-up you’re paying for time connected on a phone line. (Speed was limited by the hardware, up to 56Kbps, and data was limited by time and speed.)
- Then we had the original pilot cable modem programs, 1Mpbs unlimited.
- It seems the current genius paradigm is to sell access to a certain amount of data.
There are MANY things that enrage me when it comes to the way in which ISPs operate in Canada. I’m going to make a list.
- I enter into a contract with an ISP based on a speed metric (7Mbps, 15Mbps, 25Mbps, etc). To me this should be the average download transmission speed I get in a month. But it’s not, it’s the peek speed I might get if the stars align, there is no static or interference on the line, and no one else using it. Even then it will only come close. But be sure it will NEVER exceed that number. Meaning the average will most definitely be substantially lower. I should pay a proportional amount of money back per month if the average is under that number.
Bell, here’s an example of what I will pay you on my next bill;
25Mbps/down – 7Mpbs/up – Cost: $74.90 (with taxes and modem rental)
For simplicity say I average 17Mbps for a month download speed. I’m paying for what I think is 25Mpbs.
Therefore, my bill should be $50.93. I should only pay for what I get.
I know everyone knows the speed numbers are BS but it shouldn’t be this way. It’s fraudulent advertising*.
* it’s not cuz we add an astrix to all numbers that states; it’s just something we made up, hehe.
Internet Traffic Throttling
This is something Canadian ISPs LOVE doing. For those of you that don’t know this is were an ISP like Rogers looks at all the data you’re sending to and from the internet and saying, oh we don’t like that, let’s make it really slow. Then we’ll make the things we like, like Rogers Home Phone or some bullshit and make it really fast on the same lines. I don’t understand why the government has such a hard time seeing that this is wrong and anti-competitive. We need net neutrality. Everyone knows this is evil, stop.
This is the new fun way to screw customers. This used to be unlimited at almost all ISPs. We will sell you a 25Mpbs* connection, but you can only use 70GB of bandwidth per month. If you go over, we start charging out the ass. (At Bell $1 per GB up to $60, so double your bill).
For comparison, I use an average of 370GB per month. 300GB over the 70GB cap, costing me $60 additional dollars. I talk to customer service to see if there is anything I can do or plan I can switch to and they simply say. You’re SOL, we have no plans or packages for you.
Perhaps, I’m a power user, but I’ve been on the internet HALF MY LIFE! It’s important to me and I use it. 370GB (upload and download) a month is not a large amount!!!!!
Let’s do some math
I buy a 25Mpbs connection, if I get a full 25Mpbs and download at max speed 24/7 for 31 days it would download 4.78TB/Month. So 4.78TB a month should be my cap.
370GB is a pathetic 7.5%. How is that a power user?
70GB is an even more pathetic 1.4%
Let’s look at it another way;
I have a data cap of 70GB per month. Doing a little math, that’s effectively a download speed 0.2Mbps.
You’re thinking but Chris, you have 25Mpbs. Yes, that’s true, but I am only supposed to download 70GB. If I download 24/7 for 31 days up to 70GB, it’s an effective transfer rate of 0.2Mbps. BLAZING! Only a tad faster than Dial-up (56Kbps = 0.06Mbps).
Let’s look at how we’re getting screwed one last way
This is how the ISPs would like you to use your internet.
25Mpbs with a 70GB cap; go as fast as you want for 6.3hours then go offline for the rest of the month, you’ve used up all your internetz.
These examples are using Bell’s Fibe 25.
Everyone says I should switch to Tek Savvy. Sure, but they max out at 15Mpbs and 1Mpbs up. Useless! The cloud will never, ever, ever, ever work with these restrictions. Sorry everyone. Blame Rogers and Bell but most of all blame the CRTC, they are supposed to watching out the for the consumer.
It’s 2011 Speed and Usage caps should be going up, not getting smaller and slower.