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ntl Issues Us Statement on Broadband Usage Allowances

# 18 August 2005, 15:03 by Cable Forum

ntl has issued us a statement today regarding their broadband usage allowances, the statement says, “As recently reported on Cable Forum, ntl has announced plans to launch two new broadband product ranges: a) a 10Mb product with a range of usage allowances and b) an unlimited usage product with different speeds”.

The statement continues to say:-

“The unlimited services will be priced the same as existing services.

The company is investing tens of millions of pounds into the network to deliver these new services, adding network capacity and user controls. Customers will be offered the upgrade at no change to the monthly cost. Later this year the first customers to enjoy 10Mb will be ntl’s current 3Mb customers. Their usage allowance will also increase from 30GB to 75GB.

Currently our 3Mb and 2Mb services feature a 30GB monthly usage allowance, while the 1Mb service features 3GB. We use monthly (rather than daily) allowances so that if a 2Mb customer doesn’t use the service for a week but then wants to download 5GB in a day, they can.

For the vast majority of our users, usage allowances are not a major consideration, as they get nowhere near their allowance. However we also appreciate that it’s an emotive topic amongst others who want unlimited access. We look forward to offering a set of unlimited services for these customers.

Unfortunately, today there are a very small number of our customers whose usage is so extreme that it is impacting on other customers locally – some have consistently topped 500GB per month. This is a severe abuse of our published fair usage policy.

What action are we taking?

We are writing to these customers and will begin formally monitoring their usage for a month. We hope they will move quickly back into the bounds of our fair usage allowance. However if they continue to abuse the service we will write to them again. We will either move them onto a lower speed unlimited service or suspend them. Ultimately, this will depend on upon the degree to which they modify their behaviour.

Why is this important?

All broadband networks are shared and usage guidelines ensure that the performance of the service enjoyed by customers is at a consistently high standard.

Our networks are engineered to meet the needs of standard residential usage; this ensures we can offer affordable prices. In the last few years we have all seen strides in the affordability of broadband, but with this comes greater difficulty in sustaining the extreme users who abuse the Usage Allowance day after day.

We want to be up front and reassure our broadband customers about this. We’re writing to a very small number of users. Needless to say, we hope they take our message seriously and change their usage.

ntl User Policy and our Terms & Conditions are available at http://www.ntlworld.com/termsconditions.”

A few ntl broadband customers have reported in our forum today to have received a letter regarding their usage allowances in our long running cap discussion thread.

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