Telus Rolling Back Service
Trent Ernst, Editor
Welcome to the world of high-speed internet, where Moore’s law need not apply.
The famous dictum, made by Gordon Moore, states that the number of transistors able to fit onto an integrated circuit would double approximately every two years. The corollary is typically made that computers double in speed and power every two years. Variations on the law are also used to calculate hard disk storage, and even the number of pixels on digital cameras.
However, that does not seem to apply to bandwidth on the internet, as less than six months after high speed internet hit Tumbler Ridge, Telus is rolling back the amount of bandwidth allotted to users.
Effective February 1, 2013, the bandwidth (amount of information you can upload or download) is being reduced, in one case by half.
Currently, people who have signed up for the smallest Telus service package get 150 GB/month. As of February 1, that is dropping to 100 GB/month. People who have signed up for the high speed turbo plan will see their bandwidth reduced from 250 GB/month to 150 GB/month, and the lucky few who were able to sign up for the Turbo 25 plan are being cut from 500 GM/month to 250.
While this seems like a serious cut to the amount of data one can use, folks with other providers still have it worse, at least in terms of bandwidth. Bell is Canada’s largest IP. Their base package, offering 5 Mbps down and 1 up has a bandwidth cap of a mere 15 GB. Their package which compares closest to Telus’ top plan offers 25 Mbps down and 10 up, but tops out at only 125 GB/month, which is only 25 GB more than Telus’ lowest plan.
Over at Rogers, the stats are similar. Their 6 mpbs/256 kpbs lite plan costs $38.49 and caps out at 20 GB. Their $61.99 Extreme package offers 35 Mbps down and 3 up. Monthly data cap? 120 GB.
Shawn Hall, communications coordinator for Telus says that, even with the reductions, “Telus still has the most generous plans of any of the big providers.”
He says the changes are to help manage their internet systems. “We’ve invested over $30-billion since 2000,” says Hall. “We want to make sure that people are on the right plan for them. At this time, we don’t charge for overage. We are working to encourage people to be on the best plan for them. We have to balance usage and cost by offering a variety of plans.”
Hall says that most people don’t come close to hitting their bandwidth caps “Netflix, for instance, uses about a GB an hour, so to hit that on the top tier, you’d have to watch about 250 hours of Netflix.” Hall says most people use closer to 20 GB/month. And if they do hit their bandwidth cap? Hall reiterates: “We don’t charge for overage at this time.”
Ted Sarandos, Netflix company’s chief content officer, recently said at a conference that Canadians “have almost third-world access to the internet. It’s almost a human rights violation what they’re charging for internet access in Canada,” he said.