Another Broadband CEO Admits: Data Caps Have Nothing To Do With Capacity

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Supporters of internet data caps want to have things both ways: admitting that the monthly usage limits have nothing to do with congestion, while simultaneously arguing that those who use the most should pay more (but not that those who use the least should get any discount). Thus it’s refreshing that one broadband exec both acknowledged the congestion myth and said his company has no intention of instituting caps… at least for now.

Speaking this week at an investors conference, Frontier Communications CEO Dan McCarthy talked about how, in spite of the growing number of broadband users in America, the cost of delivering high-speed data is going down.

“The nice part of technology and what has happened is that transport costs continue to decline,” he explained, according to Fierce Telecom.

So Frontier, which has had a rough go of it since acquiring a sizable chunk of Verizon’s wireline business in multiple states, says it has no plans to deploy data caps in an effort to squeeze overage fees from data-hungry customers.

“We have not really started or have any intent about initiatives on usage based pricing,” said McCarthy. “We want to make sure our products meet the needs of customers for what they want to do and it does not inhibit them or force them to make decisions on how they want to use the product.”

At the same time, he did admit that data caps could someday come into play: “There may be a time when usage-based pricing is the right solution for the market, but I really don’t see that as a path the market is taking at this point in time.”

In spite of exhortations from pro-cap, anti-consumer advocates like FCC Chair-turned-industry-shill Michael “Son of Colin” Powell, Comcast is still one of the few wireline broadband providers instituting data caps in certain markets. However, starting this week, the company raised the monthly limit to a full terabyte of data (while also raising fees for going over that threshold).

Time Warner Cable had been monkeying around with the idea of usage-based pricing for years, but its recently approved merger with Charter means the combined companies must refrain from going the data cap route for at least seven years.

As Ars Technica notes, Verizon FiOS does not have established data caps, but it will threaten to shutter accounts of people who repeatedly devour large amounts of data.

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