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BT Broadband Not Unmetered Shock - Updated
Wednesday 24 April 2002 13:13:00 by Andrew Ferguson

Quote direct from BT press release here.

BT Broadband is a mass-market consumer broadband product, designed for customers downloading up to 1 gigabyte of data a day. This would let you download either approximately 200 music tracks, 650 short videos, 10,000 pictures or around 100 large software programmes every day. BT may introduce further charges in the future for customers whose use exceeds this figure.

So 1GB of data a day, the theoretical maximum is 5GB per day on a 512kbps line. The real questions now are:

1. What's the penalty for exceeding the limit?
2. Is it averaged over a week, or month?

BT have responded - added 2pm

BT have asked us to make clear that at this stage there is no penalty or charge for going over the 1GB/day figure. However due to the way that heavy users in the past have impacted services they are trying to be upfront in the area, i.e. that a fast always on service doesnt mean a always downloading at 512kbps service. In other words people need to remember it's a service contended at 50:1.

1GB sounds a massive amount of data, and for the vast majority it will be sufficient, but when you consider that a game demo can be 150MB, one hour of streaming radio is ~18MB and one hour of Big Brother video would be 103MB (the broadband quality version) then you can envisage days when a family could easily exceed this figure.

The question the multiple press releases dont answer is the cost of exceeding the limit, if it's 10p for every day you exceed the limit it might not be too bad. The technical reason one assumes for BTRetail doing this is to disuade the heavy bandwidth users therefore allowing them to fully populate the BT Central Plus gateways to their 5000 user 155Mbps limit. One would have expected a metered package to start at something like £22, with BT Retail taking their profit from those who go over the limit.


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