Post Office broadband customers on their Broadband Extra product will be subject to a new Fair Use Policy from the 1st June 2012. The previous policy gave no indication of what was considered heavy peak-time usage, and reserved the right to cancel a customers service, with them having to still pay any remaining months on the contract. An extract from the new Fair Use Policy is reproduced below:
"Key terms for Post Office® Broadband Extra customers and customers already receiving unlimited downloads (subject to this Fair Use Policy)
If your usage exceeds 100GB in any month, we may write to you to request that you moderate your usage. If your usage subsequently exceeds 100GB in two consecutive months or for a fifth month in any 12 month period, we may contact you again asking you to moderate your usage, and warn you that we may reduce your internet access speeds, download speeds and upload speeds.
If you continue to use the Service excessively for a third consecutive month, or for a sixth month in any 12-month period, we may reduce your internet access speeds, download speeds and upload speeds.
We will contact you before reducing the speed of your Service."Fair Use Policy for Post Office Broadband Extra as of 1st June 2012
The new policy gives a guideline amount of 100GB of usage on the unlimited service, and breaking it for a single month is no problem. Additionally the first time you breach their limits you may receive a warning letter, and only after a second warning will they slow your downloads and uploads. There is no threat to cancel your service anymore.
While many will see this as making a mockery of advertising the product as unlimited, these changes do seem to bring the product into line with current ASA/BCAP requirements to be able to advertise an unlimited broadband product.
The Post Office is playing fair, and has published a note indicating they see the changes as a material change to the Broadband Extra service, and customers who wish can terminate their contract without any incurring early termination charges. We are led to believe that customers on the Broadband Extra serice should receive a letter informing them of the changes.