April 16, 2009 at 16:39 PM EDT
Time Warner CEO: Consumers 'misunderstood' bandwidth cap testing plan
Time Warner Cable Inc. is shelving its plan to bill customers based on how much Internet traffic they generate, until it can improve its "customer education process," after receiving a poor response from consumers.
(IBTimes) -- 04/16/2009 --

Time Warner Cable Inc. is shelving its plan to bill customers based on how much Internet traffic they generate, until it can improve its "customer education process," after receiving a poor response from consumers.

"It is clear from the public response over the last two weeks that there is a great deal of misunderstanding about our plans to roll out additional tests on consumption based billing," Time Warner CEO Glen Britt said in a statement.

"As a result, we will not proceed with implementation of additional tests until further consultation with our customers and other interested parties, ensuring that community needs are being met."

The company began testing bandwidth caps last year in its Beaumont, Texas market and has recently expanded it to North Carolina and New York.

Rival Comcast implemented a 250GB bandwidth cap for residential customers last year without receiving too much negative feedback from consumers, and AT&T announced plans to test a 150GB cap. But Time Warner entry was not well received as its caps were relatively low – between 5GB and 40GB.

The company eventually announced it would also offer a 100GB "super tier" and unlimited service for $150 per month, but by then, Congress was already involved in the matter and interest groups were circulating online petitions against the caps.

Meanwhile, Frontier Communications Corp., a Time Warner Cable rival in one key test market, Rochester, N.Y., also has dropped its plans for metering Internet use.

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