Internet usage is surging to new heights: when 1 terabyte is no longer enough bandwidth

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,727   +2,046
TechSpot Elite
What this article doesn't mention is that there are a ton of noobs who have 500Mbps-1Gbps speed with a 1TB cap. Good luck finding sites that actually allow that much bandwidth per connection. Fortunately, in Canada, we have many options for uncapped internet because we have a massive third-party ISP industry.

My plan is through a third-party DSL provider. I get uncapped 50Mbps/10mbps for under $50CAD per month. That's more than good enough for me. Remember that when 15Mbps is fast enough for 4K streaming, there is very little incentive for most sites to invest in faster transfer rates than that per connection. I think that 50Mbps is just before the law of diminishing returns comes into effect which makes it about perfect for me.
 

Gastec

Posts: 139   +61
Data caps, charge more for unlimited data plans, US Internet subscribers, Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T. Sounds like "news" from Amurika from 15 years ago.
 

Toju Mikie

Posts: 214   +196
What this article doesn't mention is that there are a ton of noobs who have 500Mbps-1Gbps speed with a 1TB cap. Good luck finding sites that actually allow that much bandwidth per connection. Fortunately, in Canada, we have many options for uncapped internet because we have a massive third-party ISP industry.

My plan is through a third-party DSL provider. I get uncapped 50Mbps/10mbps for under $50CAD per month. That's more than good enough for me. Remember that when 15Mbps is fast enough for 4K streaming, there is very little incentive for most sites to invest in faster transfer rates than that per connection. I think that 50Mbps is just before the law of diminishing returns comes into effect which makes it about perfect for me.
I'd rather not wait 6+ hours for a game to download or DAYS for a video to upload... Can't do anything else while the data transfer is in progress. You could throttle the program to slow down the transfer, but it's more work
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,727   +2,046
TechSpot Elite
I'd rather not wait 6+ hours for a game to download or DAYS for a video to upload... Can't do anything else while the data transfer is in progress. You could throttle the program to slow down the transfer, but it's more work
That is true but it's not exactly an everyday occurrence and it is referring to a site that is specifically for file transfers which I did mention in my post. Using my own experience, I have a gigantic game library and I game constantly but at most, I download one game every 1-2 months. I don't consider the extra cost worth it because the vast majority of the time, I won't see much of a difference. It's like buying a pick-up truck because you tow a boat twice a year instead of just renting one for those specific situations.

As for uploading videos, that's also a very specific use profile (ie. streamers) which is irrelevant to the overwhelming majority of the population. I was referring to normal internet home use, not professional.

I actually had a 15Mbps/1Mbps plan for almost four years and it was more or less fine. If I decided that I wanted to get a new game, I would just get it a day before I expected to actually start playing it and it would download while I was at work (no big deal there). I only upgraded to 50Mbps/10Mbps because my ISP had a special on it for the same price that I was already paying. I just had to buy a new DSL modem so I snagged a new TP-Link W9970 from Canada Computers for $70CAD.

Thus far, I haven't really felt much of a difference as far as normal use is concerned because my biggest common use for the internet is watching YouTube videos. At 15Mbps, I could watch 4K with no stuttering. Probably the biggest difference I've seen so far was when I updated my ATi drivers. Sure, I'll see a huge reduction in download time for a game but like I said, that was never a huge issue for me anyway because I just scheduled it the right way.

If you're a streamer or need an uber-fast connection for something business-related, then yeah, of course it will be beneficial. For most people, the added cost just isn't worth it.

I actually demonstrated this to a friend of mine who was paying about $150CAD/month for 500Mbps. From a pure numbers standpoint, that would seem to be a no-brainer because it's only 3x the price for 10x the speed. However, he was just using it for home use and although he had the capability for that kind of data rate, he only used it (as you say) when he was downloading a game. I only found out about it because he asked me what I paid for internet and I told him $50CAD including dry loop. He asked my how I could pay so little and I told him that I was using a third-party provider at 50Mbps unlimited.

He came over to my place to see how fast that was and told me it felt exactly the same as his. I told him that for most internet use (browsing and watching videos), even 50Mbps is overkill and I wouldn't have upgraded to 50Mbps if I had to pay more for it. He has since switched to what I have and is really happy to have that extra $100/month to play with. He also likes the fact that there's no data cap. His 500Mbps internet was capped but I don't remember what the limit was.
 
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duckofdeath

Posts: 448   +586
Data caps only exist in the U.S. The rest of the world never heard of it. That makes the US a laughing stock of the world! Lack of competition and regulations!
Me in Ireland: (kid laughing then crying.gif)

Data caps exists here too, and they are indeed 1TB with both my mobile and broadband supplier.
They're not hard caps, they're just throttling the bandwidth substantially beyond the 1TB.
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 883   +1,678
Either we as a nation do not invest enough in expanding and improving our internet and its speed, or we are throwing money at the companies that are supposed to do exactly that, and all they improve is the prices their customers pay.
Comes to mind a lawsuit in USA where some internet companies were punished for taking money and doing n o t h I n g to expand the coverage and speed.
Therefore I believe that we obviously have a problem, and it lies deep in pathological greed of internet companies.

Read them and weep....

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-book-of-broken-promis_b_5839394

And thats not all of it, is actually more money and all the big ones got their grubby mittens in there.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 6,393   +4,725
Either we as a nation do not invest enough in expanding and improving our internet and its speed, or we are throwing money at the companies that are supposed to do exactly that, and all they improve is the prices their customers pay.
Comes to mind a lawsuit in USA where some internet companies were punished for taking money and doing n o t h I n g to expand the coverage and speed.
Therefore I believe that we obviously have a problem, and it lies deep in pathological greed of internet companies.
I also think it lies in the fact that there are no federal or state laws that prohibit greedy ISPs from gouging their customers. Please feel free to chime in with bla, bla, bla, government control, bla, bla, limits ISPs from making enough to improve their networks. However, the pertinent point is this
Comes to mind a lawsuit in USA where some internet companies were punished for taking money and doing n o t h I n g to expand the coverage and speed.
Though those lawsuits are not that common, from my viewpoint, at least, I bet that it is common among many ISPs to not improve their networks. That said, after I dropped Spectrum for the FTTH provider, they sent me a letter that said we just raised your speed to 200/20 for no extra cost. I had to laugh as the FTTH was 5x my spectrum speed for LESS cost. 🤣

Me? I am on FTTH 500/50 for $50/mo. with no caps, although, my usage is about 100GB/mo.
 
In Serbia I am paying ~40$ for 500/50 Mbps no cap with the cable tv and phone included. This is the top tier subscription with all channels, packages and what not. 1Tbps is 60$ more and not worth it yet at least.
Frontier overcharges in my opinion it $50 for 12 MBPS it was supposed $40 with auto pay then changed plus they took $79.96 for month which more then they supposed it not right it li kn e monopoly you pay or you cant have internet
 
Frontier started $40 with autopay then took off auto pay did take money dec Doubke charged Jan. And raised price only give 12 Mbps where Verizon $39.99 with autopay 200 Mbps.
 

mistyrain

Posts: 21   +35
Damn, I read your post and I am amazed what companies charge in your countries ... here in BG for - 100mbs (download is average 10MBs), no cap at all, optic cable, interactive TV with 150 channels and I have added 6 sport channels addinional fee - total = 23 eur per month.

Only internet is about 11 eur I think.
 

dirtyferret

Posts: 687   +864
Damn, I read your post and I am amazed what companies charge in your countries ... here in BG for - 100mbs (download is average 10MBs), no cap at all, optic cable, interactive TV with 150 channels and I have added 6 sport channels addinional fee - total = 23 eur per month.

Only internet is about 11 eur I think.
I pay around $120 for 100Mbps down/35 up with Voip phone (wife wants it). That said it handles everything we need for a family of four.
 

ddferrari

Posts: 524   +262
TechSpot Elite
yap
231GB - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
149GB - Hitman 2 + all DLC
131GB - Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Siege (with HD texture packs)
127GB - Microsoft Flight Simulator. Planet Earth on a 1:1 scale

really you only use it for downloading that much data but if you refresh your computer and downlaod everything at once those 4 games are 6387GB of hdd space

but just counting my data without the family I use about 400-600GB a month and sadly thats just me
You mean 638GB, right? ;)
 
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Markoni35

Posts: 1,234   +507
Of course it's not enough. Long time ago we used to watch 320x240 videos on YouTube. Now we want at least 2560x1440 resolution. If you're a Netflix subscriber, of course you'll watch the movies in 4K resolution. Because Full HD is for losers.

And now 8K is coming. Of course you'll not be satisfied with crappy 4K UHD, when you can watch your favorite movie from 1982 digitally remastered to 7680 × 4320 pixels. And you can also bore your friends on WhatsApp with the latest 8K UHD videos of your cat sitting and doing nothing.
 

hellomoto

Posts: 7   +1
Getchu a ISP that doesn’t cap your usage.

For real though, I feel like I’m living in some utopia in the US...only paying $55 for 400Mbps zero caps thru Spectrum no less. I hear Spectrum is one of the worst ISPs ever but in my area they’re great. So great that AT&T also has to offer 1Gbps for $60 unlimited...intro offer of course but just call and threaten to cancel/switch and get it again.

But people are such little divas about their fast and unlimited internet. I’ve lived with a 6Mbps connection for years and it was honestly fine. The issue with it is that I hardly ever worked properly. Once you download a huge game...well you have it. Updates are a thing of course but you don’t need much bandwidth for a good ping. I also got used to watching things in 480p and it’s honestly fine.

1TB a month is honestly a lot of data though. Unless it’s for a family of like 10 you’d have to seriously be wasting a lot of time. Anything work related generally requires very little bandwidth/usage unless you’re a YouTuber/streamer.
 
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hellomoto

Posts: 7   +1
Of course it's not enough. Long time ago we used to watch 320x240 videos on YouTube. Now we want at least 2560x1440 resolution. If you're a Netflix subscriber, of course you'll watch the movies in 4K resolution. Because Full HD is for losers.

And now 8K is coming. Of course you'll not be satisfied with crappy 4K UHD, when you can watch your favorite movie from 1982 digitally remastered to 7680 × 4320 pixels. And you can also bore your friends on WhatsApp with the latest 8K UHD videos of your cat sitting and doing nothing.

I find 1080 plenty and no way in hell am I giving Netflix $18 a month for the privilege of a slightly sharper image. I’m not sitting 2ft from my TV anyway. Then again it’s only $4 more dollars now. To each their own of course!
 

Gastec

Posts: 139   +61
That is true but it's not exactly an everyday occurrence and it is referring to a site that is specifically for file transfers which I did mention in my post. Using my own experience, I have a gigantic game library and I game constantly but at most, I download one game every 1-2 months. I don't consider the extra cost worth it because the vast majority of the time, I won't see much of a difference. It's like buying a pick-up truck because you tow a boat twice a year instead of just renting one for those specific situations.

As for uploading videos, that's also a very specific use profile (ie. streamers) which is irrelevant to the overwhelming majority of the population. I was referring to normal internet home use, not professional.

I actually had a 15Mbps/1Mbps plan for almost four years and it was more or less fine. If I decided that I wanted to get a new game, I would just get it a day before I expected to actually start playing it and it would download while I was at work (no big deal there). I only upgraded to 50Mbps/10Mbps because my ISP had a special on it for the same price that I was already paying. I just had to buy a new DSL modem so I snagged a new TP-Link W9970 from Canada Computers for $70CAD.

Thus far, I haven't really felt much of a difference as far as normal use is concerned because my biggest common use for the internet is watching YouTube videos. At 15Mbps, I could watch 4K with no stuttering. Probably the biggest difference I've seen so far was when I updated my ATi drivers. Sure, I'll see a huge reduction in download time for a game but like I said, that was never a huge issue for me anyway because I just scheduled it the right way.

If you're a streamer or need an uber-fast connection for something business-related, then yeah, of course it will be beneficial. For most people, the added cost just isn't worth it.

I actually demonstrated this to a friend of mine who was paying about $150CAD/month for 500Mbps. From a pure numbers standpoint, that would seem to be a no-brainer because it's only 3x the price for 10x the speed. However, he was just using it for home use and although he had the capability for that kind of data rate, he only used it (as you say) when he was downloading a game. I only found out about it because he asked me what I paid for internet and I told him $50CAD including dry loop. He asked my how I could pay so little and I told him that I was using a third-party provider at 50Mbps unlimited.

He came over to my place to see how fast that was and told me it felt exactly the same as his. I told him that for most internet use (browsing and watching videos), even 50Mbps is overkill and I wouldn't have upgraded to 50Mbps if I had to pay more for it. He has since switched to what I have and is really happy to have that extra $100/month to play with. He also likes the fact that there's no data cap. His 500Mbps internet was capped but I don't remember what the limit was.
I mean no offence but a 50Mbps/10Mbps Internet connection is not fast enough for 2021 and has been considered obsolete for a decade, at least in Europe. I pay 50€ for unlimited 600/600 Mbps fiber, including mobile, and even that is considered too expensive, here in Spain. 3-4 years ago the very same connection was artificially limited by the ISP to 300/300 Mbps (for about the same price) but the ISP's eventually had to "upgrade" (with a automated increase in price) after some market pressure and ranting by the users. They easily could have given us (at least in the cities) 600 Mbps or even 1000 for the same price, but they just chose not to. I also watch YouTube videos and at 4K there is almost always stuttering, even seconds of buffering. Ever since the start of this Covid pandemic the video calls on Skype have had lower quality and streaming of films on Netflix and other platforms almost never reaches full 1080p (my resolution) and it often takes minutes to buffer and change from low-res to 1080p. I don't even want to think about what would be like at 1440p. And that's on a 600 Mbps connection. You have to put MORE pressure on your ISP's and your wild capitalism there in North America or your will be paying through your noses for lame Internet connections for decades to come!
 
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deemon

Posts: 316   +100
"when 1 terabyte is no longer enough bandwidth"
Another poorly written title. "Bandwidth" is used to measure how much data you can download/upload per second, not your data cap. Get your internet dictionary correct, dear author.
 
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neeyik

Posts: 1,881   +2,199
Staff member
"when 1 terabyte is no longer enough bandwidth"
Another poorly written title. "Bandwidth" is used to measure how much data you can download/upload per second, not your data cap. Get your internet dictionary correct, dear author.
In this particularly industry, bandwidth is used to indicate the maximum permissible data transfer per stated time period. Yes, this is not the typical use of the term in computing, but that one can be argued to be incorrect too - in physics, bandwidth is a measure of the range of frequencies of a given spectrum (measured in Hz).
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,727   +2,046
TechSpot Elite
Data caps only exist in the U.S. The rest of the world never heard of it. That makes the US a laughing stock of the world! Lack of competition and regulations!
Where on Earth did you get that idea? Data caps exist in other countries too you know. I know that we have them in Canada for certain.

It's probably not a good idea to talk about the world outside of the USA while having the same awareness as the average American about what goes on outside of the USA (ie. none).
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,727   +2,046
TechSpot Elite
yap
231GB - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
149GB - Hitman 2 + all DLC
131GB - Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Siege (with HD texture packs)
127GB - Microsoft Flight Simulator. Planet Earth on a 1:1 scale

really you only use it for downloading that much data but if you refresh your computer and downlaod everything at once those 4 games are 6387GB of hdd space

but just counting my data without the family I use about 400-600GB a month and sadly thats just me
Damn, and I thought that Assassin's Creed: Odyssey was huge at around 90GB! Seriously though, that's got to be lazy coding because I've been playing Odyssey for ~300hours at this point and it's still not done. In all fairness, I have the Legendary Edition with all the DLCs but that's still nowhere near the size of COD:MW or Hitman 2. MSFS2020's size actually makes sense because of the colossal amount of data required for a 1:1 scale planet Earth. I can't imagine why the other games are so gigantic.