Time Warner Cable has begun putting new subscribers to its service on metered accounts. This new model, apparently limited to the area of Beaumont, Texas, provides users a certain "allowance" and will charge users $1 per gigabyte when they exceed their limit. Kevin Leddy, Time Warner Cableís executive vice president of advanced technology, told the AP that this metered billing approach is an attempt "to deal fairly with Internet usage", given the fact that just 5% of the companyís subscribers are taking up "half of the capacity on local cable lines".
According to the AP article, Time Warner Cable is offering tiers that will range "from $29.95 a month for relatively slow service at 768 Kb/s and a 5 gigabyte monthly cap to $54.90 per month for fast downloads at 15 Mb/s and a 40 GB cap." By any measure, these are pricey plans, even if we donít consider the download cap. Both downloads and uploads will count toward the monthly cap, by the way. Justifying its metered approach, Leddy told the AP that "We think itís the fairest way to finance the needed investment in the infrastructure."
A 5 GB cap will give users a bandwidth of about 166 MB per day, which may not be enough for most users and families out there today. A 40 GB cap elevates the average daily download volume to 1.3 GB, which should be enough, if you are not downloading a movie every day. But some may argue that for $55 a month, there should not be a cap at all.
Wow I really hope they aren't serious... I can almost guarentee that I use over 40GB a month. I just had to download the patches for COH the other day and that weighs in at about 2GB right there. Then add in a technet download, and maybe a game demo and I've already used 1/4 of the cap in a day. If you were to download at your max speed, you could theoretically use an entire months usage in about 6 hours.
Thankfully I don't have TW, but IIRC they are owned by Comcast, who also has been rumored to be looking at caps.