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Cisco: Metered Users Consume More Data
Tiered Plans Saw 169% Growth to 83% for Unlimited
by Karl Bode 09:16AM Tuesday Feb 14 2012
Cisco's latest data growth prognostications suggest mobile data data traffic will increase 18-fold over the next five years. The result will be the global transfer of 10.8 exabytes per month -- or an annual run rate of 130 exabytes -- by 2016. Interestingly noted in the latest data but not highlighted was the fact that tiered pricing seems to be driving more data usage, not less. The data shows that traffic on tiered planes increased 169% in the past 21 months versus 83% for unlimited data plans.

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That's in contrast to previous studies we've seen that have shown users on Sprint unlimited data plans consume more data than their capped and metered alternatives. Cisco claims that this shift is due to consumers being "educated" about their data consumption by carriers and that they want to get more consumption for their money:
quote:
"You might think they'd grow faster with all-you-can eat, but I think it's a testament to the fact that service providers are educating users more on their impact and IP footprint," (Cisco's Thomas) Barnett says. "People understand they have a 2GB or 3GB cap or whatever, so they are consuming as much as they can to get their money's worth. Those with unlimited aren't concerned, but aren't using as much."
That runs in contrast with the narrative that carriers imposed such models solely for congestion reasons. The obvious reality is carriers imposed such limits to cash in on growth and offset the inevitable death of the SMS and voice minute. Tiered pricing is usually designed to push users up the pricing scale by offering an unreasonably low plan (usually 200-300MB) that forces them to pay more for a plan where they don't usually use all the available data (usually 2-3 GB). According to Cisco, 60 percent of mobile users, or 3 billion people, will use more than one 1GB of mobile data traffic per month in 2016.

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TH47

join:2005-10-29

Cisco: Metered Users Consume More Data

You bet I do! Vidéotron caps me at 50 GB, and there's no way in hell I'll let myself use less than at least 45-48 GB, even if I wouldn't have used as much in an unlimited plan!
kerya666

join:2002-12-20
Valrico, FL

Re: Cisco: Metered Users Consume More Data

Now that is funny... all those arguments about less data usage and congestion don't stand then huh? But either way they win since it costs them next to nothing for data to begin with.
Fight these low-ball caps anyway you can but at lest for the time being use all that you (over)paid for!
Network Guy
Premium
join:2000-08-25
New York
kudos:2
Reviews:
·T-Mobile US
·Optimum Online

Yes.. It's only natural

If consumers find themselves paying for up to a certain amount of product, it would be reasonable to consume every bit of it. This temptation normally doesn't exist in products being offered as unlimited as there is no real incentive except for the minority glutons in a network.

bobjohnson
Premium
join:2007-02-03
Orlando, FL
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
·T-Mobile US
·Sprint Mobile Br..

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

said by Network Guy:

If consumers find themselves paying for up to a certain amount of product, it would be reasonable to consume every bit of it. This temptation normally doesn't exist in products being offered as unlimited as there is no real incentive except for the minority glutons in a network.

Also, as in my case and in some others that i know have been more cautious of our usage because we dont want sprint or other unlimited carriers to start the tiered data.
--

Network Guy
Premium
join:2000-08-25
New York
kudos:2

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

Sprint will do what they want to do regardless of how cautious people are with their usage. Sprint hasn't yet made the leap behind AT&T and Verizon in hopes that enough subs will defect back to them due to these artificially-necessary meters.

bobjohnson
Premium
join:2007-02-03
Orlando, FL
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
·T-Mobile US
·Sprint Mobile Br..

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

And that would be your assumption. Mine is if I'm not hammering their network for no other reason except that i can, they will hopefully leave my plan alone and/or keep collecting defectors from other companies. While they have made some anti-consumer changes lately, myself and others i know are hoping they dont mess with the pricing.
Network Guy
Premium
join:2000-08-25
New York
kudos:2

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

I'm with ya. Even though they rubbed me the wrong way recently with reducing my employee discount, they're still a better budget-conscious choice for me.

bobjohnson
Premium
join:2007-02-03
Orlando, FL

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

Lol yeah. Actually they got me twice on the discount. When they first started the because we can $10, it was included in the discount and they changed that and of course the new $5 un-discount that you mention..
Network Guy
Premium
join:2000-08-25
New York
kudos:2

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

I've held tight to my LG Optimus phone in efforts to avoid the 'because we can' fee. I got it right before they started that.

I'm waiting to see what other fee they tack on.
sonicmerlin

join:2009-05-24
Cleveland, OH
kudos:1
said by Network Guy:

Sprint will do what they want to do regardless of how cautious people are with their usage. Sprint hasn't yet made the leap behind AT&T and Verizon in hopes that enough subs will defect back to them due to these artificially-necessary meters.

Bandwidth isn't "consumed". Meters are not necessary, nor do they accurately reflect how bandwidth is provisioned and paid for. Data is not a tangible object that can "run out". Stop applying your baby boomer sentiments to technology that extends beyond your imagination.

The towers are uncongested during off-peak hours. Every time you run a speed test on your LTE phone and get 16/8 mbps dl/ul, all that bandwidth is going unused.
Network Guy
Premium
join:2000-08-25
New York
kudos:2

Re: Yes.. It's only natural

I'm well aware of that, or did I not say artificially-necessary meters?

kontos
xyzzy

join:2001-10-04
West Henrietta, NY

1 edit

1 recommendation

Meaningless?

quote:
The data shows that traffic on tiered planes increased 169% in the past 21 months versus 83% for unlimited data plans.
That statistic doesn't tell you anything! It's a totally different story than the article title suggests if depending on the difference in the number of users.

For example: if it turns out that there are 500% more users accounting for the 167% increase in usage on tiered plans and 10% fewer users on unlimited accounting for the 83% increased usage on unlimited plans; it completely flips the conversation on who the "data hogs" are.

Rambo76098

join:2003-02-21
Columbus, OH

Re: Meaningless?

I would assume this is either per user or per account, not summed. The study does not read in a manner to suggest that.
markinect

join:2011-01-20
Lansing, MI

at&t

That's why ATT keeps fuckling me over....they want me to use more data not less....go figure

axiomatic

join:2006-08-23
Tomball, TX

You-bet-cha!

If the ISP's are going to nickel and dime me to death I am going to get 110% (yes more than 100) of what I've paid for.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Sprint or growth

It's not clear if this is actual MB or growth. If it's growth, well duh, as the newer users are on capped plans, so they are still growing their usage.

Even if it's overall MB, Sprint probably has something to do with it. Good luck slurping 3GB on that mess of a network. It would be relatively easy on AT&T's 3GB plan.
sonicmerlin

join:2009-05-24
Cleveland, OH
kudos:1

Re: Sprint or growth

said by BiggA:

It's not clear if this is actual MB or growth. If it's growth, well duh, as the newer users are on capped plans, so they are still growing their usage.

Even if it's overall MB, Sprint probably has something to do with it. Good luck slurping 3GB on that mess of a network. It would be relatively easy on AT&T's 3GB plan.

AT&T's network sucks both in coverage and stability. They massively underinvested in infrastructure. In 2007 they were laying out less towers than T-Mobile.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sprint or growth

That's an incorrect statement because it depends on the area. In eastern CT, they are top dog. In Ohio and Michigan, they are top dog. NYC, OTOH, is a train wreck for them.

HonestEnd

join:2006-03-01
Sterling Heights, MI

Re: Sprint or growth

Speak for yourself! They are NOT top dog in Michigan.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sprint or growth

Then who is? Some magical carrier that doesn't exist? Who else is providing 8mbps speeds and rock-solid connectivity? Verizon doesn't even have LTE out to most of the area yet. I don't care about who has the most customers, I'm talking about the best quality network.

Ann Arbor is a little different, I've heard that T-Mo and Verizon are the best in the city, and that Sprint is dead last, far behind AT&T.

HonestEnd

join:2006-03-01
Sterling Heights, MI

Re: Sprint or growth

Verizon has a significant area of Metro-Detroit covered in LTE. Might want to look at the maps.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sprint or growth

I don't think it goes all the way out like AT&T's HSPA+ does though...

HonestEnd

join:2006-03-01
Sterling Heights, MI

Re: Sprint or growth

Considering AT&T doesn't publish a coverage map for their HSPA+ service, I guess we'll never know. I do know, however, that I get great speeds and call quality using Verizon here in Michigan. I'm sure its different for everyone though.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sprint or growth

It's on their website, and on Howardforums, so I don't know what you mean by not publishing?

firephoto
We the people
Premium
join:2003-03-18
Brewster, WA

Cisco predicting the future

The future where selling traffic meters isn't profitable or they don't want to hang their hat on that part of the link due to increased scrutiny of their accuracy.

The numbers do make sense, human reaction to situations is somewhat predictable most of the time. The next step will be traffic manipulation (more than now) and a good PR campaign to show it with use caps in a glowing light of goodness for consumers and a little price bump because obviously it costs more.
--
Say no to JAMS!
neftv

join:2000-10-01
Broomall, PA

metered tiered plans outdated

Metered tiered plans are an outdated concept of the early internet days. They should stop doing that because internet data is on a shared network that has been paid for over and over.
Its not like a public water company where you have water coming to your house and then your sharing your water with your neighbors by send in it out again. I can see why water is metered to your house but internet data goes two way and the network is there like I said been paid for over and over again. This is just a way to gouge our pockets to satisfy shareholders and board room mentality of probably people who are close to retirement.

NickD
Premium
join:2000-11-17
Princeton Junction, NJ
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: metered tiered plans outdated

Bandwidth isn't a commodity that runs out like water or gas. The fiber backhaul costs pennies per gigabyte whether used or unused. At 200 mbps, that's a gigabyte every 40 seconds. At 3 in the morning with no one using the network, the cell company is still paying a few cents per gigabyte for the backhaul even though it's not being used.

There should be a slowdown for those who use excess data during peak times. But someone who streams Netflix every night between midnight and 5 is not straining the network like someone streaming Netflix at 5 in the afternoon.

koolman2
Premium
join:2002-10-01
Anchorage, AK

Re: metered tiered plans outdated

I've been waiting for some company to come up with night and weekend bytes.