Since Comcast's run-in with the FCC and eventual implementation of a bandwidth cap, there's been a lot of focus on how ISPs sell their services. Everything, from advertising to speeds to transfer limits has been dissected and discussed. Most recently, a lot of attention has been given to Time Warner, who admitted they are preparing to introduce some rather draconian bandwidth caps, giving unlimited access only to those who can afford their steep prices.
Time Warner's deal started nearly a year ago when they first announced it. Now it's become a much bigger issue than just them. Could, ultimately, this problem be dealt with via legislation? It's possible – and recently, one step has been taken that could indicate that's the direction it is taking. A Congressman from New York has called for Congress to investigate and possibly ban the implementation of bandwidth caps on ISPs in the U.S.
It's also possible such a legal move never gets off the ground. After all, there are some ISPs, such as wireless and satellite providers, who simply do not have the capacity to cope with large bandwidth demands. Still, a good point was raised – in cases like Time Warner, there's definitely a conflict of interests going on. Online video has the potential to harm sales of cable services, and bandwidth caps are an effective way to curb that. It sounds very familiar to the debates of telephone companies refusing to carry VoIP traffic. It may be that down the road, ISPs will be forced to remove caps or make them fairly high altogether.