Mobile capped / fair usage policies… future compatible?

I’ve just been looking at T-Mobile’s fair usage policy, which, for ‘unlimited internet’ quotes:

This plan comes with a fair use policy of 1GB a month. We’ll monitor how much you send and receive each calendar month so that we can protect our network for all our internet customers. If you use more than your fair use policy amount, we won’t charge you any more, but we may restrict how you can use your plan, depending on how often you go over your amount and by how much.

I saw similar small print in recent full page adverts for Orange’s iPhone contracts. I suppose it might seem ‘fair’ that most people won’t use more than 1GB on Twitter, Facebook, Gmail, etc in a month. I know I won’t… for now.

But I think that is the key. This contract is for 18 months, tied in. Who knows what we might be doing, or want to do in 18 months? Technology is moving fast enough these days that it’s not unlikely we might be doing any of the following:

  • downloading TV shows to a mobile on the bus on the way home from work, to stream/transfer them to a larger TV at home for family viewing.
  • using GPS and associated bandwidth for more navigation, context-aware stuff.
  • watching CCTV or webcams from home, streamed.
  • controlling home devices from a mobile.
  • skype / VOIP
  • downloading more games and other large files
  • creating rich content such as video, then uploading them to sites such as Youtube.
  • controlling my hover car
  • remote control of my time machine from another dimension

You get the idea. I find it a bit overwhelming trying to anticipate technology in the future… I’m getting to that age.

Suffice to say, by 2011 1GB a month might not be enough.

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2 Responses to Mobile capped / fair usage policies… future compatible?

  1. Anonymous says:

    GPS on it’s own does not require the internet, but it possible might for the associated apps (E.g loading in Google maps). Also it might be worth checking if the phone you want allows you to download apps using your Mac and then transferring the app to your phone that way. Can’t see I’d ever want to download video on my mobile, I have video on my iPod touch, but rarely use it, but that is just me.Mobile phone rental charges have not gone down in the same way that broadband charges have. If anything they have got more expensive, with 18 month and even 24 month contracts common now. You add up the rental for some of these deals and you could buy the phone several times over. Unfortaunately the networks don’t seem to want to invest enough of their profits on increasing internet bandwidth. I know people with the iPhone have had frequent problems because O2 is straining to cope with the current network Internet usage, let alone any future bandwidth. Thus we may well reach a point were the networks are going to be the ones limiting our future mobile internet use, either by prohibitive pricing or usage capping, rather than limitations of mobile technology. But what can we do eh?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Oh and I want one of those Hover cars

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