Should unlimited internet plans continue to exist?
Categories: Science & Technology
This means means the independents will have to pay more to provide faster internet to their customers. It also means they will have to plan how much internet they expect to need. If they require more than they'd planned for, they will need to buy more capacity from the established providers.
The ruling is considered a compromise aimed at giving both sides the opportunity to claim minor victories.
Originally posted at 10:45 a.m.: Big telecom companies, small internet service providers and their customers will all want to know the results of CRTC ruling on internet billing today.
Will unlimited internet packages survive the CRTC decision? (iStock)The decision will affect how small, independent ISPs -- and hence their customers -- are charged by large providers such as Bell.
Most small companies don't have direct access to customers' homes, because they can't afford to build connections to each, individual user.
Currently they purchase that access for a wholesale rate from the big companies, like Bell and Rogers. But the big guys now want to charge them based on usage rather than a flat rate.
Last January, the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission approved Bell to impose usage-based billing on its wholesale customers. Small ISPs that had offered unlimited internet packages said that decision would force them to discontinue those plans, stifling competition and putting them out of business.
Groups representing internet users also protested vocally, saying the decision would drive up internet costs, especially at a time many internet users were starting to take advantage of new video streaming services such as Netflix that consume a lot of bandwidth.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper requested a review of the decision and his government threatened to intervene if the CRTC didn't reverse it. The results of that review will be presented this afternoon.
Should unlimited internet plans continue to exist? Or do such plans encourage heavy users to use more than their fair share of bandwidth? Let us know in the comments below.
(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)
More entries for category: Science & Technology
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