Google is weighing in on the growing tension between ISPs and their customers, following up the FCC's decision that Comcast was in the wrong when they opted to covertly filter customer traffic. In a recent post by a Google “Internet Evangelist,” it seems their view is running contrary to the idea of transfer limits that many ISPs are considering now. A point is brought up regarding how a single file transfer could end up getting someone cut off.
As the owner of streaming media-friendly sites like YouTube, Google has a vested interest in making sure that everyone is able to access their content, no matter what the ISP says. Metered bandwidth has a lot of advantages and disadvantages, the biggest disadvantage of which Google sees as people being limited in their use of high-bandwidth services. Instead, they are vouching for transmission rate caps, in essence limiting the capacity of someone's connection once they have exceeded a certain threshold.
Not a bad idea in theory – it reduces total bandwidth consumption, doesn't prevent users from making use of the Internet 24 hours a day and still (hopefully, as far as Google is concerned) provides a connection suitable for online content. It's an interesting and growing debate that is surely to escalate as streaming services, particularly streaming video, continue to become more popular.