250Gb Comcast Cap Official...But Is It Too Small?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by dw426, Aug 29, 2008.

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  1. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    As some may already know, as of Oct 1st, Comcast will be capping its download/upload use to 250Gb per month. Some are questioning Comcasts data as to how many videos/emails/songs one must download/upload to hit this cap (for instance 50 million 0.5 kilobyte emails....never seen one myself). Critics are also concerned about how present and, more importantly, future use of streaming media and other increasingly high bandwidth uses will affect this cap. More here:

    http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/150473/critics_question_comcast_broadband_caps.html

    My thought, while 250Gb a month IS quite a lot for most folks definition of downloading/uploading, there could be some gray areas when taking into consideration the "Youtube generation". If Comcast sticks to its guns (and they are certainly not the only ones implementing or considering implementing caps), could we see a decline in the Youtubes, Pandoras, Liveleaks of the world? Your thoughts?
     
  2. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    If you're talking just plain downloads, then that seems enough to me, 250 gigs would be 8.33 gigs per day, how many of us download that much? Even a Linux distro on DVD is only 4 gigs or so, still leaves a lot left.

    Streaming is another question though, I don't know how much data actually moves thru in a typical youtube video... but my instincts tell me it should be ok.... 250 gigs a month is quite a bit.. Course if all you do is sit and watch youtube videos all day then it may be a problem.... :)
     
  3. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    IMO, there lies the reason why Comcast, Time Warner Cable and others to come, are tweaking their bandwidth caps... for the day that we truly start streaming commercial content and movies into our living rooms. It's all about the money, folks!
     
  4. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    I have not yet heard any talk like this from my current ISP, Cox, but they seem to be a step above the rest anyway. I currently get upwards of 28 Mbps download speeds on just a regular monthly account. I'm moving soon and will then have Time Warner/Road Runner, which only promises 6 Mbps, so maybe that's why the cap too, they have less capacity. Cox seems to be able to handle anything here.... any time of day too. I can download a Linux distro any time of day in just 5 minutes or so... pretty amazing...
     
  5. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    Youtube (unless you are a frequent uploader) was probably a poor example on my part as the vast majority of content there is 10 minutes or less, which probably doesn't amount to much bandwidth (not an expert opinion by any means). I have not used Netflix recently, but do they not offer downloading/streaming of their film offerings now? If so that could turn out to be an issue, the "LastFM"-type sites also possibly being iffy.

    I agree that from even a P2P'ers perspective, 250Gb a month should be more than adequate, it's the ever-growing online media/living room streaming that may be a cause for concern. It's obviously something that's just going to have to go through a "trial period" before anyone can really be sure.

    Edit: When you mentioned Cox, I had found reference to them earlier here:http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/C/COMCAST_INTERNET_CAP?SITE=WIRE&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

    Depending on the plan, evidently their cap ranges from 5Gb to 75Gb per month. Warner is mentioned there also as having between 5 and 40Gb in one area. What area I am not sure.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2008
  6. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    Kerodo, don't kid yourself. Cox might not subscribe to that bandwidth cap model, at the moment, but if everyone else in their industry does it, where does that leave Cox?

    It's a monkey see, monkey do type corporate mentality that will drive all Cable companies to be the same. Yet, we will have choices: Basic Cap, Basic Cap Plus, Enhanced Cap, Premium Cap, Divine Cap, etc. and those who can afford it, will relish in the joy of unlimited bandwidth. The rest of us will just have to settle for the government's rebate on the digital box so we can convert our rabbit ear's TVs next February. ;)
     
  7. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    It's looking more and more like there never was such a thing as "unlimited bandwidth"....it's just that there was the tiniest amount of people who ever came close to whatever cap there was. Even if up to this point there HAD been unlimited bandwidth, I believe, and the articles are seemingly backing up my opinion, that those days are coming to an end. I don't place 100% of the blame on ISPs though when I really sit down and think things through, I believe (my opinion) that the Internet itself was not meant/prepared for everything we do with it now when it was being designed.

    Back to the topic though, shouldn't Divine cap BE unlimited?
    :D
     
  8. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    I knew you were going to pick up on that! :thumb: dw426, greediness has no limit and if someone can come up with a better cap title, in order to charge more, you know they will!
     
  9. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    Yes, I'm sure you guys are right, once some of them do it, they all will follow. Cox apparently has a monthly limit already then, but I was unaware as I have never ran into it personally. Since I am not a heavy user in those terms, I appreciate speed mostly, the cap won't effect me too much. But for some it may be trouble from what you say. The only real problem area I can see is your "online media/living room streaming" type stuff. That will be an issue sooner or later.... the rest may not be.

    I'd be happy with my present speeds, with a low cap, but somehow I don't think I'm going to get these speeds with Road Runner.... oh well.... guess I will enjoy while it lasts for 10 more days... ;)
     
  10. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    I just checked out Roadrunner...5Mbps tops? Yuck.
     
  11. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    Yeah, they claim 6 when I ask the guy on the phone...

    Unfortunately, the ISP business in this area is a monopoly type thing, you get whoever services your geographical area.... So life will change here shortly. The funny part is, I am only moving about 3 miles from here, yet that puts me in another city, and hence another ISP.

    Actually 5 or 6 Mbps is fine. I have never yet seen any download server or site be able to get anywhere near the 28 Mbps I get now. best I've seen is maybe 10-12. The MS servers do pretty good at times too.

    Anyway, you get what you get, and life goes on....
     
  12. midway40

    midway40 Registered Member

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    Pffft, I would gladly take 250GB/month as opposed to my present 17GB/month on satellite, lol.
     
  13. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    Ouch :'(
     
  14. jrmhng

    jrmhng Registered Member

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    In Australia, all plans have a bandwidth cap. I pay $60 AUD per month for 20 GB. I'd love to have a 250GB 'cap" :p
     
  15. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    I've never heard anything good about Australian ISPs, love the country, but I'd hate to be an internet user there:'(
     
  16. jrmhng

    jrmhng Registered Member

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    Well no torrent throttling...but then again, with small caps like that, you dont need to!
     
  17. Defcon

    Defcon Registered Member

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    Its all about content control, the cable companies make money by oversubscribing. According to Comcast, their avg user uses only 2-3gb/month, for which they pay $50. Thats almost all profit for Comcast, and thats what they want all of us to be.

    If someone actually uses broadband for its intended purposes, they are the 'enemy'. This is their way to beat Netflix, Hulu, HD streaming and all the other things which will soon be normal, and want you instead to pay for their PPV.

    I know 250gb is quite generous, but it sets a bad precedent. And in a multi user house, with HD streaming, Xbox game demos and downloads, as well as uploads, its quite possible to exceed that.

    Why don't they give us a bandwidth monitor? Why not let users know when they are getting close?
     
  18. ambient_88

    ambient_88 Registered Member

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    250 GB is way more than enough for the average user. However, those who download a lot of content, particularly media files, may very well exceed that limit. For example, I download fansubs on almost a daily basis (ranging from 100 MB to 2 GB per file). While it may seem a lot, I would probably never exceed the limit, though I could come close. Still, I don't really like the idea of capping the bandwidth. When we lived in Japan, we never had limits. But then again, Japan's network is more advanced than here in the US (45 Mbps is a common plan; 100 Mbps is the equivalent of the premium speeds here (the max I've seen is 30 Mbps FiOS)).

    But like I said, the average user--one who surfs the web, plays online games occasionally, streams video/audio, etc.--would probably never come close to using 250GB/mo.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2008
  19. emperordarius

    emperordarius Registered Member

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    Who cares
  20. Longboard

    Longboard Registered Member

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    Yes
    250G W:eek:W
    You guys have no idea !!
    I dont think anyone could afford that here
    http://my.bigpond.com/internetplans/broadband/cable/plansandoffers/default.jsp
    $70/mth here for 25G !! Lucky to get 5mb/sec speed
    I know we're better off than some many but the monoploy here DU is surreal.
    Australia for a first world economy is slowly falling off the global business competitive web user lists: shocking lack of long term vision and infrastructure planning.

    LOL: 2G wireless bb here is about $30 LOL: http://my.bigpond.com/internetplans/broadband/wireless/plansandoffers/default.jsp
    :ouch:
    Never mind hosting ripoffs..:rolleyes:
     
  21. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    Perhaps right now 250 is enough, but it totally depends on what you do. I think though what most are afraid of is how this will work out in the near future. HD content, social websites, VoIP, Web 2.0 (this can also include the "online office" faze we're going through currently), even the brand new interest in "cloud computing", all of that is data being transferred and bandwidth being used, and these uses are expected to grow rapidly.

    Most of us may be well within the safety zone for now, but we could soon find ourselves hoping that our ISPs will adapt to the changes and upgrade not only these limits but also their systems to be able to keep up.
     
  22. rpsgc

    rpsgc Registered Member

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    Bandwidth caps... uh... wait... does this mean you had unlimited (no download/upload limits) bandwidth all this time? :eek:

    I have to content to a mere 40GB a month (and that includes upload!).
     
  23. BlueZannetti

    BlueZannetti Administrator

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    Perhaps a more illustrative way to look at this is as realtime download clock time going full bore. An 8 Mbps connection (basically what I have from Comcast) will yield content downloads up to 3.6 GB/hr, so a 250 GB cap is basically equivalent to 69.4 hours of maxed out download per month (or ~2.3 hrs per day).

    For a typical individual user, it's probably not much of an issue. When caps were mentioned some time ago I actually monitored usage from my home, and as I recall, the entire house (4 users) tended to sit in the 25-30 GB range and I probably dominated that with Linux distro downloads as I was sampling them at the time. Of course, 4 users like myself and we could have been within a small integer divisor of the cap, so while it looks substantial, there will be many cases in which it's not.

    Finally, if an ISP is going to implement limits, they really should provide a facility for users to monitor their proximity to that limit.

    Blue
     
  24. midway40

    midway40 Registered Member

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    Blue, my satellite internet provider, Wildblue, does implement a "gauge" to show your upload/download stats. If you go over any of these the network speed is reduced until the level falls back down to acceptable limits. Frequent warnings can cause your account to be suspended. They refer to it as the Fair Access Policy in which they claim to need since they can only get so many subscribers on each "beam".

    This is my only way to get broadband but it is a lot better than dialup. I used to pack my tower to work to download large updates (especially when I was fooling around with Linux). Other than the low download/upload limits, the only other negative thing is secure websites. For some reason they are dead slow on satellite.
     

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  25. MikeBCda

    MikeBCda Registered Member

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    That's my account almost dead-on. Upgraded from dialup to DSL about 3 or 4 months ago ... back on dialup I was averaging a little under 1 gig total bandwidth a month, and usually 2 to 3 gigs these days. I'm paying $48 (Cdn) a month, including router-modem rental.

    My ISP has a "soft cap" of 60 gigs a month, and that's plenty fat for folks like me.
     
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