ISP’s billing by the byte

I have heard a great deal of talk in the last couple of weeks about the effort from Time Warner and other ISP’s to start billing by the byte. It’s not a new idea. Ten years ago the ISP’s and telecom’s were calling this 3rd-generation billing or 3G. Today they are calling it “a ‘consumption-based’ model.” See todays article Time Warner Drops Internet Metering Plan. The communications industry does charge by the byte on some price-plans and has for a long time. Surfing the internet from your Blackberry, sending text messages from you phone, uploading photos and downloading ringtones are examples. These services are often charged by the byte. Check your telephone bill.

This plan has never worked and this is just the latest attempt by the industry to probe the consumer to test their defenses. The average internet user is awfully savvy about how they are being billed and, obviously, have a lot of information at their finger tips. Many of us spend much of our time on the internet while we are making our living. Consumers have been against being charged by the byte for a long time so today’s article on CIO is no surprise.