Comcast to enforce 250GB monthly bandwidth cap

By Justin Mann on August 28, 2008, 7:55 PM
After months upon months of debates, inquisitions, rumors and much more, the final outcome of the Comcast vs. the Internet fiasco looks like it's about to be resolved. Comcast has confirmed earlier rumors about bandwidth caps, and is now going to implement them.

Starting October 1st, Comcast will begin enforcing a 250GB monthly bandwidth cap. The cap, they say, will satisfy the overwhelming majority of their users given that the median consumption rate is only about 2-3 GB per month. From many perspectives, this is a fair amount. Even if you are an avid Netflix user and stream like crazy, download a lot of music, and spend 12 hours a day on YouTube, you'd be hard pressed to chew up 250GB of data in a month. For those that do, however, there's definitely going to be some backlash.

Whether or not people will agree with the cap, at least it's good and correct for customers to acknowledge what the set limitation is. Formerly, Comcast would simply fine or cancel accounts that consumed too much bandwidth (in their opinion) never telling customers how much that was anyway.

User Comments: 12

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9Nails said:
I'm not in favor of a cap at all. Restrictions breed more restrictions. I can see that 250 GB (big B right?) seems fair. But I'll bet you that this is just a start. Or in Comcast's case, a continuation of the downward spiral.
shl0791 said:
how about halfing the price for their service if they're going to do this to us. Aren't we paying for unlimited access?
nirkon said:
In my opinion 250GB is more than enough, I guess they freaked out because there is a (relatively) big percentage of people hogging everyone's connection.Still yeah, if they are advertising unlimited access, they could be sued.
jtickner1 said:
I think people that are against this cap really need to suck it up and get over it. 250GB is huge, here in Australia it would be hard to find a plan that generous. With my current plan, I get 56GB a month, split into off and on peak, 8GB and 48GB off and I find it hard to get over 48GB. Nirkon, you can still have a bandwith cap and advertise "unlimited access" When I go over my bandwith limit I get shaped down to 64Kb from 1.5Mb. It's fine for browsing, bit harsh on a download but I've still got my 'net. If I want to download something big, I just wait till midnight and start ripping into my 48GB.
darth_terra1 said:
I dont know how it is in the U.S, in the uK unlimited access means that you can have access to the service at anytime with out your Download speed being capped at peek times, Unlimited downloads is just that you can download as much as you want, i'm lucky enough to be with a ISP that offers both, some are not so lucky either having speeds capped at peek times or a monthly download limit, i beleive some have both.
skitzo_zac said:
I want American interwebs. I have a poor 12GB of bandwidth on a 512Kb connection, and like jtickner1 I am shaped to 64Kb after I go over the 12GB.This is a crappy deal even by Australian standards, I need to switch ISP's
windmill007 said:
Sure that seems like a lot...but like others said...start big then later you can start inching down. Things are going to get more and more bandwidth intensive on the web so caps of any type are bad. it just allows the providers to slack off improving there infrastructure and end up costing the consumer in the long run. I'm glad I have Verizon and if you have a choice I suggest anyone on comcast to call and cancel. Tell them you are canceling due to all there caps and restrictions.
DarkCobra said:
This move gives me pause for concern as well. I fully understand that it was done primarily to go after the very few bit torrent users who are moving around dozens of high definition full length movies and doing so often, thus creating server conjestion for others. However, I think a more creative avenue should have been sought in going after THAT small group instead of an across the board cap for everyone. I don't personally approach anything near these limits and few of us do. However, once they start limiting things for everyone based on the actions of a few we are then on dangerous ground. One suggestion might be to create a more expnsive montly package for those few ultra power users who regularly need such bandwidth. If some people need that ultra level of use then let THEM subidize it. Those extra fees could purchase more servers for that group. But imposing limits and collecting fines from the rest of us who might only once in a blue moon approach those limits is unnecessary.
lncpapa said:
Caps are garbage - and I'm totally against this. This is just going to be another avenue for creating tiered levels - so now they'll be able to do both throughput and data transfer caps. This is going to suck in the long run. For those of you already stuck with crappy caps, just because we only beat our children half as often as you do doesn't make it right or fair.
Space_Cowboy said:
Personally, I hate Comcast. I had MUCH better service when RoadRunner was in my area. I'm opposed to caps, even though I don't use that much bandwidth. The reason is that if a company signs you up telling you that you have 'ulimited' download, thats what it should mean!I'm wondering if the cap includes the Comcast news servers? Currently, they limit you to 1gb per month which really sucks. When I was under RoadRunner, it was unlimited.
PanicX said:
An ISP implementing a bandwidth cap would be a kind of oxymoron wouldn't it? An Internet Service Provider should always be providing internet services if that's what you're paying for.I think the problem here really is false advertising on their part. They've convinced customers to sign on to their services with promises of being better than competing ISP's. But if their network is being over worked because their users are actually using the bandwidth they've been sold, perhaps they shouldn't sell more service than they can provide. They should advertise the speeds they're prepared to offer customers regardless of competition showing better offers.
biloxibeachboy said:
If they are going to cap our bandwidth then they should provide some sort of Advertisement blocker that blocks all of the tons of bandwidth that those advertisements are eating up. After all we are paying for the service and being bombarded by advertisements for our money. I average 65 gig a month and I would bet that if they blocked the advertising from it I would use less then 10 gig a month. I am a paying customer and you are limiting my usage and forcing me to read tons of advertisements for my trouble. Fine you block the ads and we will use less bandwidth. Some sites have gotten so bad that the popup blockers can't even stop all the popup ads (respected news sites are the worst).
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