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Update: Suddenlink Usage Cap Numbers Arrive, Company Declines to Comment

Phillip Dampier September 30, 2011 Broadband Speed, Competition, Data Caps, Suddenlink (see Altice USA) 8 Comments

Suddenlink serves portions of these Texas communities

Stop the Cap! has learned Suddenlink will establish usage allowances nearly identical to AT&T for their broadband customers, with a $10 overlimit fee for each 50GB customers manage to exceed their limits.

Suddenlink officials have declined to comment on Stop the Cap!’s report published yesterday.

The usage caps, which will first be implemented on customers in Amarillo, Tex., are as follows:

  • 150GB per month for customers subscribing to “lite” tiers of less than 10Mbps, similar to what AT&T limits its DSL customers;
  • 250GB per month for 10, 15, or 20Mbps customers, similar to AT&T U-verse;
  • 350GB per month for premium-priced 50 or 107Mbps service packages.

Suddenlink says they expect less than 1% of their customers to exceed the monthly limits.  If they do, they will receive warnings three times before the overlimit fee is imposed.

“It could have been worse, but there doesn’t seem to be any justification for these limits other than the fact their biggest competitor in Texas — AT&T — has them,” says Amarillo resident and Stop the Cap! reader Angel.

“It’s another example of what happens when you live in a country that allows broadband duopolies,” Angel says. “Just like with cell phones, as soon as AT&T does something, their competitors follow suit and the customers are stuck paying more and more for less and less service.”

Angel says the first time he is billed an overlimit fee of any kind, he’ll downgrade his broadband service.

“Why pay for premium priced speed tiers when usage caps make them not worth the extra money?”

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Baxter
Baxter
9 years ago

Well, It def could of been worse, I could def live with this, at least for now, we dont netflix or stream that much and when we do on the 10mbps we get about 110gb so that def leaves quite a bit, and not to mention I can get all the computers and devices in the house to use opera to compress the data, and what not for the regular user thought they might find this a hassle also on a side note, I could think of one reason why suddenlink is following AT&T’s model, most of the places in… Read more »

Ian L
9 years ago

A few notes: Suddenlink business class is more expensive but capless, just like Comcast Business Class. By the time you go overlimit twice, on Suddenlink you aren’t required to pay anything extra. On Comcast your service would be suspended. Downgrading if your usage is above SL’s thresholds may hurt you more than help you…a little over 250GB on a 10/15/20 Mbps tier would run you $10 above the tier price, whereas that same amount on a “lite” tier (1.5 Mbps down, 256 kbps up in Amarillo if I remember correctly) would be $30 above the tier price. In most cases,… Read more »

Ian L
9 years ago
Reply to  Ian L

To be clear, if SL’s caps were half of what they are, or if their overages were 50 cents per GB instead of 20 cents, I’d have more of an issue with their way of doing things. Neither of these conditions exist.

Scott
Scott
9 years ago
Reply to  Ian L

Neither exist *now*…

This new metering along with stopping further expansion/investment is their new profit center.

Time has shown again and again they will tweak their plans as necessary to continue to increase their revenue by reducing limits or increasing pricing the penalize customers much more than you’d see on a consumer friendly unlimited plan that doesn’t have you counting your megabytes.

Ben
Ben
9 years ago
Reply to  Ian L

Since the O.P brings up comcast, more notes: comcast business service is cheaper AND faster than Suddenlink (including a $5 router rental I pay 104.95 for 22 Mb down, 5 Mb up) from suddenlink for business service of that speed (20/5 in SL’s case) I’d pay $349.95. The only service that is close to comcast’s speed while still being broadband to me is the 129.95/month 8/1 service. Though it’s worth pointing out you *CAN* pay 69.95 / month for 6/0.75 service….

Go competition. Oh wait, there isn’t any… wonder if I can buy a house outside suddenlink’s service area…

truthmonger
truthmonger
9 years ago

Its beyond absurd that a terrestrial provider would cap your data or charge overages. Throttling is the only fair solution for the so-called 1% of heaviest users. AT&T has this policy for wireless, which has far greater limitations on network capacity (you can’t create more airwaves, sadly). I realize that there will always be those who will abuse any resource, but the root problem is not the supposed 1%. I’m getting very tired of companies basing their entire growth strategy on rationing services instead of reinvesting in their infrastructure. History has shown that this kind of profiteering inevitably cripples a… Read more »

Russ
Russ
9 years ago

This just goes to show how ignorant the average consumer is. Bandwidth costs ISPs a lot of money. Most of them offer it at or below margin to remain competitiive in multi-ISP markets. If an average customer had to pay what it should really cost for bandwidth through their local Internet carrier including the markup necessary to turn a profit, they’d be appalled. Time to grow up, everyone.

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