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[ NNSquad ] Re: AT&T Internet bandwidth caps: BAD for Netflix. GOOD for ... AT&T

I'm going to go on a limb here and mix a few things up.

Let's assume that the caps are set such that 98% don't even notice
them.  This leaves, reportedly, 2% who are impacted.

1) Instead of charging x for 50GB overage, what about an option (the
growing norm in India) to throttle the speeds when you go over)? In
fact, give consumers a choice which they'd prefer.

2) Instead of absolute numbers (e.g., 150 GB), what say a weighted
average based on "outliers"?  Over time, as Netflix or something else
grows into homes, the 150 GB may be insufficient.  Will they increase
it or just catch more people to pay? Why not this be set up, say, that
the cap is to be done such that 98% of users are not to be impacted.
Over time, they would necessarily have to invest in infrastructure.

This is getting very close to regulation.  I am dealing with this in
Smart Grids and Time of Use/Real-time pricing.  One starting point for
many discussions is that the utility can charge more for "peak" usage
but there has to be a commensurate discount for off-peak usage.  The
utility should be revenue neutral (under existing consumption
patterns). [One major catch is how to include vs. exclude transaction
and up-front costs].  The idea is that by charging more at the peak,
one could induce a shift in consumption, saving users money (either in
the short run or in the long run by avoiding capital investments).

So in the Internet (rather, last-mile) world, it's a little
"dangerous" whether we want to fully go down this route.  EVEN if we
don't want to regulate them, we could start by mandating the public
availability of the curve (histogram) of usage.  I.e., fraction of
users using below x, y, z GB, etc.


On Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 6:34 AM, Lauren Weinstein <lauren@vortex.com> wrote:
> AT&T Internet bandwidth caps: BAD for Netflix. GOOD for ... AT&T
> http://j.mp/gNIAY2  (gigaom)
>     "How much Netflix video does 150 GB get you?
>      Not that much, actually ..."
> --Lauren--
> NNSquad Moderator