The Internet has been around for years, and many people love to use it. Unfortunately, there are some ISP providers out there who want to ruin it for you by creating Internet caps.
What Are Internet Caps?
Internet caps (or broadband caps) basically limit the amount of data you can use each month. Instead of having unlimited Internet access, you could only do so much with such and such plan. Some plans go for around forty gigabytes per month, while others could be higher or even lower. Some people do not even use twenty gigabytes in a month, but that could change in the future. For example, other reports indicate that the majority of US households will consume around a terabyte (one thousand gigabytes) per month by 2010.
The ISP providers that are attempting to impose these Internet caps on their customers may use some sort of excuse such as they’re attempting to combat piracy. Internet pirates generally use up large amounts of data when they’re stealing videos, music; etc. However, creating Internet caps will not stop the pirates; instead, they’ll just change tactics. They might utilize flash drives more for transferring large files or just think up something entirely new.
Besides, what makes you think an Internet pirate actually pays for their own Internet access? More than likely, most of them just hijack someone else’s Internet connection to conduct their illegal activities. And that person probably never even realizes it. So instead of charging the public more for the workings of criminals, why don’t the ISP providers simply focus on better security plans for protecting their customers. This benefits everyone in the end (except the pirates).
Who Uses Large Amounts of Data Legally?
Already some individuals easily surpass twenty to forty gigabytes of data per month for perfectly legit means. Legal on-line video websites such as Hulu.com use around a gigabyte for just two or three streaming videos that last around forty-five minutes. And as time progresses, more and more people are going to want to view television via the Internet. For now, the quality isn’t exceptional.
But with time, this can only improve. And just imagine how expensive it will be if Internet caps are enforced. Also keep in mind that as the quality of on-line video improves, more and more data will likely be transferred. So the early estimate of one gigabyte for every three videos could be three to five gigabytes with higher quality on-line video. With any luck, they’ll find better ways to compress the data without ruining the quality; however, don’t hold your breath.
Netflix is also starting to use streaming video for some of its movies. So instead of waiting for your DVD to come in the mail, you can simply purchase a device that connects your television set to the Internet. Then you can watch your movies whenever you want, and as many times as you want. But if Internet caps start to take off, then this feature will become much more expensive for you to use.
There’s also the gaming public. Individuals who play games such as World of Warcraft on-line, probably use up a lot more than twenty to forty gigabytes of data every month. Two hundred gigabytes of data is probably a better estimate. And some gamers may use even more (you know who you are).
If the Internet starts to cost too much, then fewer people will use it. This will also cause problems for Internet start up companies, and for individuals who work via an Internet connection. Shopping websites like Amazon.com will attract less users; thus, there will be less sales for them.
Simply put, Internet caps are a terrible idea. The ISP providers would be better off improving their security, enhancing their products, and keeping Internet prices reasonable (thirty to forty dollars a month). This encourages the use of their products, and keeps their customers loyal.