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Turbocharging Profits: Road Runner Ration Plan Breakdown

Phillip Dampier April 4, 2009 Time Warner Cable/Spectrum 4 Comments

“Customers could save money…” – Alex Dudley, Time Warner


Road Runner High Speed Internet Cost Review
Tier $/Included Traffic Allowance = Your Cost vs. Theirs

Your Monthly Price      Per GB     Time Warner Pays Per GB¹
$29.99 (5 GB Tier)      $ 6.00            less than 10¢
$39.99 (10GB Tier)      $ 4.00            less than 10¢
$49.99 (20GB Tier)      $ 2.50            less than 10¢
$54.90 (40GB Tier)      $ 1.37            less than 10¢
IYHTAYCAI² (100GB Tier)   N/A             less than 10¢
each additional GB      $ 1.00            less than 10¢
¹New York Times, January 17, 2008²IYHTAYCAI = “If You Have to Ask, You Can’t Afford It”/Time Warner has not released pricing details.


Your Money = Their Money - Turbocharged Right Out of Your Wallet!

Your Money = Their Money - Turbocharged Right Out of Your Wallet At Blazing Fast Speeds!

The current price for Road Runner service is $39.99 per month for unlimited access (slightly higher if you do not have a cable package) in most areas.  The equivalent service level under the new plan tiers would be 10GB per month, based on the chart in the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle.  The “standard service” plan (20GB), which is expected to be marketed to most existing customers, represents a $10.00 per month rate increase.  Are you soaking in the savings yet?

Now a breakdown of what it will cost you to use the Internet for several popular applications (low amount represents $1/GB overage charge, high amount represents cost on economy/lite plan):

  • Typical High Quality DVD quality movie streamed online (4GB) – $4-24 each
  • High Definition quality movie download (Blu-ray)  (13GB) – $13-78 each¹
  • High Definition quality movie download (Blu-ray) (25GB) – $25-150 each²
  • High Definition quality movie (Akamai Platform) (9GB) – $9-54 each³
  • Netflix TV Show/Movie streaming (1-4GB) – $1-24 each
  • Hulu/Joost/Amazon/Megavideo TV Show stream (<1GB) – $0.30-2.00 each
  • …to be continued with your input!  Help us inform subscribers of the true costs of Time Warner’s Internet Rationing Plan!
¹Constantine, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Ultraviolet (+/- 1GB) ²The Fifth Element, Transformers, Casino (+/- 1GB) ³Akamai-distributed on demand movie streaming/“Akamai White Paper – Highly Distributed Computing is Key to Quality on The HD Web”

From Our Readers:

“A RoadRunner Turbo customer downloading at the advertised 15Mbps speed can download 40GB of data in 6 hours. 6 HOURS! That leaves a user paying overage fees for nearly an entire month.” – Nathan

” To take the further, in one month (at full capacity) one could theoretically download 4.8TB of data. Assuming TW’s highest unannounced tier (100GB/mo) is priced at $75 with $1/GB over, 4.8TB would cost approximately $4,835 for that month. Let’s take a much more realistic scenario for a “heavy” Internet user (i.e. lots of Hulu, Netflix streaming, online gaming, working from home, Facebook, uploading and downloading pictures and music, etc.) — we’ll assume 250GB of usage in a single month.

Again with TW’s highest unannounced tier priced at $75/mo, this person would pay $225 per month for usage at that rate [$75 + ((250-100)*$1 = $225].” – Brion

To update World of Warcraft on a fresh install is almost 3GB.” – Shawn808

“You can kiss off online backup services with Road Runner.  You’ll blow through your cap if you use these.” – BillInSanAntonio

So what third party IS keeping a watch on the “gas meters” that TWC will place for us to watch our usage? How do we really know that this is correct?” – jsmith

I not only pay for standard RR, but also Turbo as I want the download speed. Again, sold on this plan by RR and already pay more for it. Our video security is done via the Internet, our phone, our research, our entertainment. We already pay over $100 a month for TW services. Hey TW, is that a banner ad I just had seen on another site trying to sell me cable service? Hummm…Hello…It would have just cost me to download YOUR AD. (Thanks for that.)” – David

“Of course, this pricing plan change only affects residential users, while business accounts will not be bothered by it at all. Which is another sting in the matter, where businesses are probably using it more from all the internet cafes, and wi-fi access points that use TWC. So why are they exempt from being included, and only home users in this time of economic crisis?” – L Smith (Greensboro)

Currently there are 4 comments on this Article:

  1. Shawn808 says:

    Competition, or the lack of it, goes a long way to explaining why the fees are higher in the United States. There is less competition in the United States than in many other countries. Broadband already has the highest profit margins of any product cable companies offer. Like any profit-maximizing business would do, they set prices in relation to other providers and market demand rather than based on costs.

    LMFAO

  2. RecycleBill says:

    I’m not certain if this will remain an alternative but here’s my link: http://bloggingpoet.squarespace.com/bloggingpoetcom/beating-time-warner-at-their-own-game.html

  3. Joe says:

    A 5GB tier?! I setup some traffic monitoring on my router after I heard about this and discovered a constant 10Kb/s stream of ARP traffic. Do the math, that’s 3.3GB/month of just ARP requests and answers between routers.

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