Don't sell me 500mb/month limit and tell me its good

O2 are putting in a low, 500mb a month (thats around 16mb a day, don't forget that!), limit for mobile data and theirexcuse reason is:

"We don't think it's fair that the many should subsidise the behaviour of the few, and we think that we have a responsility to our customers to address this kind of imbalance." ... "97% of our smartphone customers currently use less than 500MB of data every month"

To me that actually says "3% of our users are causing such a strain on ournetwork everyone needs to pay the price"

You can argue that some people might only use 200mb/month and thats fine, but thats what they are using today! As core functionality like "facetime" (which Nokia and a lot of other phones had before it was "new") and HD video become the norm this is going to go up, quickly!

Lets put 16mb per day in to context. Using typical examples from O2 this is how it breaks down:

Usage per day!
YouTube video (4.5 mins)2 videos
Music track download low quality)1.6 trakcs! If you use spotify premium or last.fm. BOOM!
Basic web page (100KB)166. Facebook before you login is 86 KB
Rich web page (300KB)50. My twitter.com page is 246KB so that is 50 page refreshes

When you look at these figure and think, "I won't look at 166 basic web pages a day" just remember you need to include all the other apps which are also using your bandwidth like emails and push services. Start going in to a app like Dropbox and pulling up that PDF then thats your daily limit gone quite quickly.

I'm not just saying "give me unlimited". I'm not stupid. "Network resources are finite. You can't offer infinite consumption of finite resources". All I am saying is find out why these 3% are using 1Gb a month (or more) and see what needs to change there. It might be as simple as the 3% are jailbreaking their phones to tether to their machines. In which case they are breaking the TOC so dump them.

I don't know the right answer here, but 500mb is the wrong one! Before we commit to anything as users we need to know some basic information:

  1. over the last 12 month have I even come close to the 500mb limit?
  2. can i put a restriction in place to physically stop me from going over the limit?
  3. how well (and accurately) will this be reported to me? (And don't say by text message as that uses the precious, buckling, network that we are trying to protect)? *there is sarcasm in there*

Update: Once you hit your limit your data speed will slow down. You will not be charged more. Which is nice!