Teh Internets Dear Comcast, Fuck You
posted by August 28 at 16:30 PMon
Comcast—which provides service to 14 million customers, including me—has just announced that beginning October 1st, they will cap customers’ data usage at 250 gigabytes a month. Users that go over could be fined or booted altogether.
Comcast says sending 20,000 high-resolution photos or 40 million emails, Downloading 50,000 songs or watching 8,000 movie trailers would put you over the limit. However, there’s already a heated debate raging on tech site message boards like Ars Technica, where one poster notes that:
250GB does sound like a lot, but by my calcs, this would limit me to roughly 30 hours of (perfectly legal!) Instant Netflix viewing on my Roku box, which streams at around 2Mbps. Please someone correct me if my math is wrong on this.
250GB = 250,000Mb -> 250,000Mbp/(2Mb/s) = 125,000 sec = 34.7 hours!
Then of course you’ve got to account for online video gaming, email, browsing and porn hunting in that 250gb of data. As Dominic Holden put it: “What is that, like, an hour on Xtube?”
It’s unclear whether this will account for both uploaded and downloaded data. DSL Reports, citing an anonymous source, says no, but it doesn’t look like there’s any official line yet.
Why is this so fucked? Well, obviously if you’re a heavy data user—or have several in your household—you’re gonna take it on the chin at some point. It’s also unbelievable that Comcast’s—rather than upgrading their infrastructure, like so many other countries have done—is just cutting users off at the knees. With the huge growth in online video distribution—like the Netflix Roku box, or upcoming video streaming on Xbox Live—this just blows my mind. The internet is not a finite resource and it doesn’t have to be this way.
I’m going to start looking around tonight to find out if Verizon or Qwest have rolled out any of their fancy high speed lines in my area.