Blog // Connect Michigan
Tightening your data belt can save you money
From PETER WAYNER | The New York Times
Published: October 5, 2011
The economics of an all-you-can-eat buffet are pretty easy to figure out. The restaurant makes money as long as most of the diners don’t have big appetites and enormous capacity for engorgement.
It hasn’t taken Internet service providers very long to conclude that their all-you-can-eat pricing isn’t as profitable as charging those who use more bandwidth streaming videos and music more money than those who pop on for a quick Facebook chat. Many are adopting flat-rate pricing or pricing tiers. The more you use, the more you pay. Many are even imposing limits on their customers.
Comcast, for instance, limits its customers to 250 gigabytes a month, a threshold that it estimates affects no more than a few percent of its customers. The limits are much lower for wireless data providers like the cellphone companies. Verizon, for instance, offers plans with limits of 2, 5 or 10 gigabytes a month.
Complain all you want about the new plans, but there are only two ways around the problem: Use less or pay more.
Much of the advice on how to use less bandwidth will sound a lot like what you’d hear from any dietician who catches you at the smorgasbord: eat less or at least eat the healthy foods. It’s not an emotionally satisfying answer, but when it comes to broadband, it is either that or pay more.
Like any diet plan, there are a few tips for making that easier.