When word spread last week of Time Warner Cable's broadband caps, consumers exploded in anger. Trying to calm down the mob, the company clarified its Road Runner pricing plan that will roll out in Greensboro, N.C. and Rochester, N.Y. in August. It added more tiers to that list of 5, 10, 20, and 40-gigabyte monthly caps (priced between $29.95 and $54.90 a month, with a $1 per GB overage charge). Now there's also a $75/month 100GB tier for "heavy users," and a light package, a slow 768kbps connection capping at 1GB per month for $15 with $2/GB overage charges.
The kicker is that overage fee, but the good news is that once you get to $75 worth, that's the maximum additional money you'll pay in a month. So you could just choose the $75/month "Turbo" package, go over the 100GB max and pay a total of $150 a month. But at the same time, the company also says you can get "virtually" unlimited service for $150. Sounds like weasel words to me. And all of this is still a bad deal compared with Comcast, charging $43 a month for a cap of 250GB.
But wait just a second here. The idea of charging people for the bandwidth they use has a certain fairness to it. My objection is the high price. I say, cut all these numbers in half, and it's not a bad deal. Paying $75 for unlimited Turbo service? That's about the same as I'm paying now. Now Time Warner, cut the greedy pricing and make it faster, 100mbps down/50mbps up, and you might get some takers.