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Aspiring Contributor
Message 1 of 8

Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

I have been in a really difficult position with my internet since I re-installed W7 last month and chose to break the 100Gb fair use limit. My internet is now pretty much useless to me, I work, I go to bed at a reasonable time and Saturday days I always have things to do. I dont feel I have abused my internet, my raid array went down and I had to re-install Windows.


Here is my problem, I'm a gamer, my TV cost me 10 quid and I only use it to play my Wii, SNES or Megadrive or my better half for watching Masterchef or Hollyoaks. We mostly watch TV with an evening meal or if we have a spare hour or so. It's really nice to be able to switch on the PC, check 4OD, iplayer for a program you want to watch. Another revolution for me is an application called Steam for buying games.


Here is were my problem comes in, my DUMeter keeps clocking up those GB.


If I buy on average a game a week, (I do buy more as there are smaller titles I also purchase). The latest titles are hitting 2 DvD's in size


~ 60Gb a month


If I watch 3 BBC iplayer program in HD per week


~ 12 Gb a month


3 normal iplayer programs per week


~ 6 Gb a month


3 4OD programs per week


~ 4 Gb



That adds up to 82G



I play on-line games, nearly all modern games are now aimed at multiplayer on the internet as it's a great way to make people buy the games. DLC that you purchase is becoming the norm on PC, I use ventrillo. I am getting the 80b warning every month without fail.



The real problem I had was when I reformatted most of my games are on-line, I need updates, Open Office, downloading things I have uploaded (BT Vault) while I formatted my PC for safe keeping. To be fair its mostly to do with Steam and watching TV online.



I think that 100Gb is to low in the modern digital world for someone who has grown up using and loving these products and services. Do BT have a plan to have a sit down and take a fresh look at this limit ?


I know other broadband companies use a lower fair use policy, even on a day to day basis but the throttling is also only for a day or so. 1Mbit internet when on the top package for a month is poor service imo, I can't see me staying after my contract has expired


What do other people think ? Is upping it a good idea ? Is reducing it better while lowering the "punishment" time ?



#edit spelling mistake + added end line

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Aspiring Contributor
Message 2 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

Can you switch to a different supplied with a higher limit?



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Aspiring Contributor
Message 3 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

I totally agree Jeye, here's a copy of an entry I made in the 'Fibre Trial' forum which is only viewable by trial members -


Ok, so BT are in the process of 'reviewing' their Fair Usage Policy - good news!


Let's hope they come up with a more sensible way of controlling traffic rather than the 'Sledgehammer to crack a nut' approach they currently have.


Currently if you exceed 100GB in any one month (that's 3300MB per day average), even if the majority of it was downloaded between midnight and 6am when it would not impact on other users' quality of service, you are punished by having to suffer a speed of 1Mb between 5pm and 12am for a minimum of 30 days.


Interestingly BT doesn't state that it is 1Mb in the T&C's, they use the phrase "significantly reduced speed" which is deceptive. A reduction of (up to) 97.5% speed is rather more than 'significant' it is monumental!


The point of an FUP is to deter people from heavy usage at busy periods, thus ensuring a good service for all users - because BT (and other service providers) have a limited amount of bandwidth available. (Not unreasonable - they have to balance cost against service levels)


The fairest way to achieve this is to limit heavy usage during busy periods - but not for 30 DAYS, just apply it as and when it occurs.


A very reasonable approach is taken by Virgin -


They apply restrictions if you exceed a set download during busy times. An example of how this works is that if a broadband XL customer (20Mb speed / unlimited) downloaded 3500MB of data between 4pm and 9pm, their download speed would be temporarily set to 5Mb for 5 HOURS. Just 5 hours - you're back to normal after that, getting what you pay for.


If BT were to take this approach I'm sure we would all find it acceptable?


However, it is possible that BT does not have such sophisticated control within their Traffic Management Shaping equipment to be able to dynamically manage individual users.


Come on BT, for an innovative, marketleading company, you FUP is totally outdated. You need to change it quickly otherwise your 'BT Infinity' product will be a non-starter. Why would anyone pay a Premium price for a high speed service to then find they are throttled to 1Mb (potentially 2.5% speed) for 30% of the time?


One final thought for your Marketing Department - How about using Buzz Lightyear in your adverts? You can imagine the impact now - "To Infinity...but not Beyond 100Gb"


A BT moderator has confirmed that it is under review - let's hope they come up with something sensible!




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Aspiring Contributor
Message 4 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

I don't have much high hope for the review, to be honest. The best I'm expecting BT to do is maybe increasing the limit to like 200GB and then leave everything else as it was. Or worse, they just carry it out half-heartedly and conclude "we are great! nothing needs change!" and status quo is still status quo.


The reason for my lack of optimism is that BT has the monopoly over the phone line business which means anyone thinking of saving the line isntallation/connection money MUST use BT BB without any other choice (beside spending >£100 extra - even for simple connection at the exchange!). As a result, they won't really care if the customer turnover is high because at any one time, there are many people "wanting" to do biz with them. And management planning (which usually sufferes from "shortermism") is more concerned with "winning" new customers and not retaining old ones. In fact, as long as BT retains the monopoly over the line business, their current business model is actually sustainable for a foreseeable future.


Just my 2p which doesn't really worth much anyway. Smiley Very Happy

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Message 5 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

bloody hell you guys must download a lot, i have talktalk in my own house and its a 40gb limit and i struggle to hit that. I do online gaming and dnownload a fair amount aswell. 100gb is a helluva lot in my opinion. 

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Message 6 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

maybe somebody is jacking your wireless?

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Aspiring Contributor
Message 7 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

Thanks for the replies, it's good to see that its on their radar to review. It can be hard to hit 100Gb in a month but it can also be easy.


Today I found myself frustrated also, I got my "you hit 80Gb warning" last week, managed to get my games back off Steam, well the ones I wanted anyway. I've been working for the last 6 days and fancied a new game, as my DU meter is out of sync I dont know exactly how much my upload / download total is. Called the service desk and after a good 5 mins they tell me the only team that can tell me this dont work weekends 😞



All will be backt to normal tomorrow, cap is lifted, total reset, I have everything installed on my machine I want. Should manage to cruise the months bringing down 60-80 again. How long will this last though. Maybe I fancy looking at a service like itunes or something similar where you buy films and D/L them to your machine. Sounds good to me. Games will only get bigger, on-line TV will get better quality and bigger file sizes.


When you add up line-rental and the top internet package I think it's alot to pay for a package that when compared to others offers some what I find harsh limits. Unfortunatly my only options where I live are BT, Virgin (not cable though) and more recently Orange. Exchange is due to be turned over to wholesale in a couple of months though so hopefully there will be plenty more soon.


If it is the case in order to keep my custom I would like to see the fair use cap period down to a day or 2 but I would think it's more likely they just add 50gig or so on the top. I dont want to pay money out and then have to worry about my usage or be "punished" when one month I need to d/l more than 100gig.


At least Final Fantasy is out on the PS3 soon, should give my internet useage a nice breather 🙂

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Aspiring Contributor
Message 8 of 8

Re: Fair Use Limit - Time for an Update ?

Wireless is all good and secure, it does get used though. Friends who come over on a weekend sometimes bring laptops, last week I have had to put my BT officer hat on and ask them not to download / stream anything. I think the biggest problem is I'm just generally a geek 🙂
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