Cable Tech

10 Meg Is Here!

6:00 AM -- I just boosted my bandwidth again, this time to 10 Mbit/s. Charter Communications Inc. , my service provider, charges me a little more because I don't take their TV service along with my bandwidth subscription. But, interestingly, they aren't exactly advertising the bump up to 10 Meg in my neighborhood, since it's not widely available.

But here's an interesting thing, I think: A look back at my bandwidth prices paid over a three-year period shows that my top download speed is up considerably, but the price per day is down about 3.8 percent.

Table 1: What I Get, What I Pay for Charter Bandwidth
Date Downstream Upstream Price Per Month (After Tax) Price Per Day Price Per Megabit (Per Month)
Sep-03 1.5 Mbit/s 128 kbit/s $62.91 $2.10 $41.94
Mar-04 2 Mbit/s 128 kbit/s $41.23 $1.37 $20.61
Jul-04 3 Mbit/s 256 kbit/s $41.23 $1.37 $13.74
Jan-05 3 Mbit/s 256 kbit/s $52.05 $1.74 $17.35
Mar-06 3 Mbit/s 256 kbit/s $32.46 $1.08 $10.82
Sep-06 10 Mbit/s 1 Mbit/s $60.47 $2.02 $6.04
Mar-07* 10 Mbit/s 1 Mbit/s $86.38 $2.88 $8.63
* Projected price based on the end of a 6-month promotion

The price per megabit of available bandwidth has fallen by about 80 percent in just three years. I'm not complaining -- but how do service providers even hope to make money on bandwidth when prices are falling that fast?

— Phil Harvey, Cheap Bits Editor, Light Reading

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DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:13:07 PM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! The 10 Meg followup is here:
trzwuip 12/5/2012 | 3:39:49 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! The answer is that prices for cable internet have always been too high, but now cable has to compete with fiber to the home services.
DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:39:46 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! I think you're right. As soon as someone rolls into my 'hood with FTTx, I'll be 10 Meg goes down to $49 or less.

As an aside, I'll probably never pay the $70+ listed on the chart for my service.

The customer service people at Charter encourage customers to call after their price promotion ends so they can glom onto another promotion before the rate goes up.

Why not just be a good company and charge what's fair?

thenight62 12/5/2012 | 3:39:45 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! Yo Philter.

How'd you miss Optovia getting taken out by JDSU? Ain't this an optical news site? :0

stephencooke 12/5/2012 | 3:39:42 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! Phil,

There are at least a couple of points to consider here:

1) What is your actual network bandwidth (this generally has to do with the stat-muxing ratio in your 'hood)

2) It is assumed that not everyone will call customer service and will cough up the extra $23.47/month above what you are paying now. The point is that, as long as it didn't cost Charter that much to provide the bandwidth increase that you see, they are still gaining revenue if not margin as well. This is the same rationale behind mail-in rebates.

busted 12/5/2012 | 3:39:41 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! proof!? That is why we need journalists; isn't it?
Lite Rock 12/5/2012 | 3:39:41 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! Yo? That is so 80's...

Why would you bust Phil's hump about this when nobody covered this acquisition. It is not even listed on the JDSU web site.

How do we know they really acquired Optovia?

Can you provide some evidence?

I mean, I am happy if they did. The folks that moved from Boca needed to get some kind of reward for moving to MA.

DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:39:40 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! Optovia... what do they do again?

thenight62 12/5/2012 | 3:39:38 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! hybrid raman amps... hut skipper.
Lite Rock 12/5/2012 | 3:39:37 AM
re: 10 Meg Is Here! You sure they didn't call it the "hut hopper"?
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