Last year O2 introduced traffic management on their O2 'Access' home broadband package. Access is the product you can get from O2 if you are not connected to an exchange which has been unbundled by O2. It uses BT Wholesale's network to provide speeds up to 8meg and offers 'unlimited' downloads, which according to O2 means 'Download as much as you like'.
Of course, there is no such a thing as an unlimited broadband connection, and what O2 meant to say was "Download as much as we like." Recent O2 forum postings report that users have been contacted saying that usage should be decreased to around 40GB a month. Go over this limit and you may face a warning from O2, and if you continue, O2 will provide you with a MAC and will disconnect you within 30 days.
O2's own support website suggests that you should in fact use much less than this.
"How much should I cut my broadband use?
Most O2 customers use less than 10GB a month. Aim for that and you'll be okay."O2 support webpage
The irony of this story is that it comes out just as O2 have launched a new advertising campaign to "nobble the niggles in broadband". The campaign is designed to question rivals claims about their broadband service and how it performs, but O2 may want to look closer to home first. Click play below to see the advert on YouTube .
O2 have never been good at defining the term 'unlimited' as can be seen in 2007 when they had three different definitions for the word. Back then they did recognise that customers were confused by the term and the marketing director Sally Cowdry was quoted as saying "customer feedback has been that if we say unlimited, it should be unlimited." We wonder why two and half years on, O2 still have not 'nobbled this broadband niggle.'