Posts tagged comcast

Comcast finally Launches a Usage Meter for 250GB cap

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Comcast_logo

So way back in October of 2008, Comcast announced a cap on it’s “unlimited” access of 250GB a month. Now the complaint was, there isn’t any way of tracking this straight out of the box. So many customers went into a frantic rage about there being a cap on “unlimited” internet and there wasn’t anyway to tell if they were going to be charged or not. Comcast assured customers that this cap was well above the average user and most users will never even come close.

Well as of Today, there is. Comcast sent there customers an email with the title “Usage Meter: Pilot Launch”. The basic idea is that it isn’t software that you install on your PC or Mac, but a simple space on your account page that when you log-in, you can access this information under the User and Settings tab. They will even go back and show you over the past three months what you have done, so that you get a basic idea of what you are using. Here is the email:

An important message from Comcast 

Dear  Comcast High-Speed Internet Customer,

We  are pleased to announce the pilot launch of the Comcast Usage Meter in  your area. This new feature is available to Comcast High-Speed Internet  customers and provides an easy way to check total monthly household  high-speed Internet data usage at any time. Monthly data usage is the  amount of data, such as images, movies, photos, videos, and other files  that customers send, receive, download or upload each month. Comcast  measures total data usage and does not monitor specific customer  activities to determine data usage.

The  current data usage allowance for the Comcast High-Speed Internet  service is 250GB per month. This means that the vast majority of our  customers – around 99% currently – will not come close to using 250GB of  data in a month, and do not need to check the usage meter. 

To  view your current data usage, please visit http://customer.comcast.com and sign in to customerCentral (as shown at http://media2.comcast.net/anon.comcastonline2/support/Outbound_email/usage/cCentral-Login2.jpg). 

After signing in, click on the "User  & Settings" tab and click again on "View details" under "My  devices". The usage meter shows the current calendar month's data usage  for your account starting on the 1st of the month. Over time, you will  be able to see the previous three months' data usage as shown in the  sample image at http://media2.comcast.net/anon.comcastonline2/support/Outbound_email/usage/Usage-Meter.jpg. 

The usage meter is only available to  Primary user accounts and Unrestricted Secondary user accounts with  billing access. 

If you would like to  learn more about the usage meter and how it works, please visit http://networkmanagement.comcast.net/datausagemeter.htm for more information. Please visit our customer support forums at http://forums.comcast.net if you would like to ask us more questions or post comments. You can  also visit http://www.comcastsupport.com/chat to chat with a customer service representative, or call 1-800-COMCAST  for assistance. 

Thank you for choosing  Comcast! 

So this to me is good way for me to see what it is that I am using. Now from what I can tell, they don’t give you a full detailed break down of your internet traffic, like cell companies do of your calls, but it does give you a graph to see how much traffic you are using month to month. So I was a little intrigued to see what mine is, as I do a lot of YouTube HD, Vimeo HD, Hulu HD (when available) and also Netflix over the XBOX 360, as well as gaming on the XBOX. I was actually kind of worried, because I don’t have cable and watch all of my favorite shows, like 24, over the internet and also watch A LOT of Revision3 shows via Boxee or iTunes. I even have my own podcast that I put up on YouTube as well. So I considered myself an high-usage user to watch all of my video content via the web.

I was pleasantly surprised, that I really don’t even come close (as previously assured by comcast) . Let me show you my screen after I logged in:

comcastusage

Now in January, apparently I went a little crazy and used 61GB, but February I went back down to 49 and for March, I am trending downward. I think I really need to start downloading my content in a FULL HD quality when I can, instead of streaming it, and try to see if that will make a budge on the meter. With this tool, I will continue to see how I trend, but thanks Comcast for coming up with this tool fashionably late. We shall see how it goes from here!


    

I like his way of thinking (current FCC chairman)

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fcc-chairman-julius-genachowskiThe still fairly new FCC chairmen Julius Genachowski is rocking the airwaves brother, and I mean in a good way! At least for the bottom line. Mr. G is trying to make use of the Universal Service Fund(USF) that we all get charged on our phone bills in a new way. Currently, it is used to subsidize the phone lines for low-income households. For an AGING technology. He wants to revamp that to start paying for broadband to the curb for rural areas that we were all promised in the FREAKING 80’S (what happened to all that money AT&T????!!!!). And you begin to hear the cries and sorrows from the AT&T camps already. SHUTUP! At least someone is finally holding you accountable for what you were supposed to do with our money YEARS ago. And don’t even get me started on the whole Net Neutrality thing, that is so far gone off the end of the grand canyon, that’s not even funny. (You should read this horrible article seeming to lean towards the side against Net Neutrality from The Week{paid subscribers only}, it basically says that we are stifling innovations with Net Neutrality, which is the biggest freaking lie, grrrr… I hate even thinking about the idiot who wrote it) It seems all I hear about is how AT&T is groaning and crying and sending lobbyists after lobbyists to the capital hill and all I keep seeing is that AT&T freaking sucks!

He is even trying to free up the TV airwaves to make sure we are the world leaders in the next 10 years! Guess what? More whining and moaning from the cable companies. An economist for the Brattle Group, Coleman Bazelon, even said that if the freed up space from the TV airwaves, which by the way aren’t even being used at this current time, would be worth an estimated $64 billion dollars if they were used for wireless, where as they sit right now, only $12 billion. Are you freaking kidding me? That sounds like elementary economics to me, but NOOOOOO, cable companies don’t want to lose their strong hold. We can’t take a freaking penny from them, even if it did better mankind, it’s all about the money going into their pockets.

I honestly don’t understand why this country is still run by stuffy old white men who are cheating on their wives, squandering billions and billions of dollars on themselves, instead of speeding up the technology curve, that we are falling BEHIND the rest of the world.  I just pray that this reaches the masses, and even President Obama or Julian Genochowski:

Dear Mr President or FCC Chairman,

Thank you for pushing to have broadband to the curb, to All equally. Broadband is the future, and we as America have fallen behind, because we have allowed large corporations to squander our money on yesterday’s technologies and outdated utilities. No longer should we stand by and watch the money be wasted. Thank you Mr. Chairman for looking into revamping the USF. It needs a new direction, and we need to open innovation to everyone. We cannot be stifled by the AT&T’s and Comcast’s who ‘own’ the lines. They have to understand that innovation can come from a 12 year old child in Chicago or even a 65 year old man in Utah. We cannot block the lanes of traffic and create these so called ‘fast lanes’ that only the super rich can afford to travel on. We don’t have highways that we drive on and pay for and get no speed limits. We all drive on the same highway and we have speed limits and if you feel the need to drive faster, then you pay for going faster. That’s the way the internet should be. If I want to go faster, then I should be charged a little more, but I don’t get any special treatment. (that sounded good in my head.. after thinking on ti, i don’t know..)

I got a little carried away there, sorry. My point is, Mr Chairman, Mr President, please keep pushing and keep fighting for broadband to the curb. Make sure we keep Net Neutrality as the rule. We cannot and will not be told what we can and cannot do on the internet, just because some guy at the top wants to make the rules, because ‘they’ built the roads, and in the end just wants to put more money in his pocket. Call the cable companies and tell them that they can free up some of their airwaves for future wireless technologies, we can be the leaders in wireless technology in 10 years!

Thank You

Rusty Greer

via [Wall Street Journal] & [Engadget]

comcast is up to it’s old games again (again)

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Comcast_logo

old news

So my ISP, is back to its regular ways again. This time, it is throttling its users back at two specific points, and this just seems horrible in the fact that I PAY for the service. I am not receiving free service via paid ads or some cray pyramid scheme. I am PAYING for it. The first trigger is if you are using 70% of your maximum rate for 15 minutes, they will throttle you back. I am running the 22d/5u; so if I run over 15.4mbps for 15 minutes, they will throttle me until they see fit (about 15 minutes worth). The second trigger is, if the main hub (Cable Modem Termination System) that I am hooked up to feels that I am hogging up the bandwidth on it, regardless of the speed I am running, it will throttle me until things are back to normal.

I really don’t appreciate this, especially if I am running some sort of torrent or downloading some big file from the internet. Just for instance, I paid for a digital copy of windows 7, and I should be getting the advertised speed that I am PAYING for, instead, I have to wait for it because comcast thinks I am bogging down the network. All the rest of you comcast users can suck it for all I care; your just regular users using YouTube and Friendster and Facebook and Twitter. You don’t need all that speed anyway.

This is honestly getting ridiculous playing this cat and mouse game. It’s just getting old. For the last few years it’s been torrenting issues and blocking certain traffic and the FCC said you had to stop it. Now you are just playing the game again, but just a little differently so your not breaking the rules. I don’t like you comcast. I pay you for a service and you don’t deliver. I understand you have to provide for millions of people the internet, but gosh dang it, they need to get back on dial-up or DSL anyway.

via [Engadget] who got it from [Slashdot] who got it from [the Inquirer] who got it from [DSLreports.com]

Comcast upgrades Nashville

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So today I got in the mail a few surprises, and one in particular that I was very happy to receive.  It was a mailer from Comcast, in which I normally would have thrown away, because it’s just ads for their service.. but this one was different:

ComcastFront

So I was very intrigued to see exactly what this was, as Comcast has done speed upgrades before when they went from 3 to 6 Mbps and then 6 to 8Mbps. They always claim even more with the “PowerBoost” that only lasts for the first 10MB or 5MB or whatever it was, but wasn’t really that much speed…. so let’s flip it over…

ComcastbackWow, this is starting to sound like and Apple ad for the 3G iPhone, when it first came out (by the way, I am waiting for the 4G, or 3G2). So as you scan down the page, you can begin to see my excitement!!! Let’s take a closer look:

Comcastback1That’s right, the old 6Mbps is now the new 12, and the old 8 is now 16!!!!!! The “PowerBoost” does make it look good with the 20/4 on the new one, but you will only have that for a short time. The thing that caught my attention was this little gem:

Comcastback2WHAT??!!! ARE YOU SERIOUS??? We are finally catching up to the Asians and Europeans?? Why has this taken so long??? So I called, and asked to be upgraded. Prices first. The smaller of the two is $69.95/month. Which isn’t much compared to what I pay already, which is $67.95, so why not??? I asked for the price of the larger, and it is  $99.95/month! I would have gladly paid the price, BUT I just gave up a $132 bill from Comcast for having HSI and HD cable.

So I was foaming at the mouth, I told the rep that I wanted the 22/5. She began to tell me that I couldn’t get it in my area, that it was currently in rollout stages, and has not come to my neighborhood. BOOO!!!! Don’t send me a flier, then tell me I can’t get it. That’s like telling sending me all the specs and pictures of next year’s model of the iPhone, and telling me I can’t tell anyone! AHHHHH! She did tell me however that it should be out at the end of the month in my neighborhood, so I am looking foward to that. While I was waiting, I read this little snippet:

Comcastback3All I had to do to double my speed (to the 16Mbs), was unplug and plug back in. You don’t think I didn’t do that right away!!! Here is a few speed tests that I ran off off DSLreports.com



Not bad for a first test run, but I need more, so wait I shall!!!

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