Telus Internet Overuse Charges Anger Customers

by Istvan Fekete on February 23, 2015

Telus customers in British Columbia and Alberta will start paying fees for exceeding their Internet plan’s monthly data allowance, the carrier announced last week. Although most Telus customers are already on an Internet plan that already meets their current needs, there are a handful of heavy Internet users who will incur additional data charges ($5 for 50 GB). They will, however, be notified before being charged, the company informed its customers in an online statement. The change will go into effect on March 30.

The reason behind this change is a sharp spike in online video streaming: “In the last 16 months alone, our customers’ monthly Internet data usage has more than doubled. Much of this consumption is being driven by a minority of our customers. In fact, less than 5 per cent of our Internet customers are consuming 25 per cent of the data on our network in any given month”, the statement reads.

Some customers, such as UBC electrical engineering student Scott MacLaren, don’t agree with Telus’ move, calling it unacceptable and questioning the new charges. “It’s really unacceptable that they keep charging us this,” he told CBC News.

“If they’re saying I can watch all the TV I want through their internet network, but I can’t go browsing Facebook on this, as much as I want, is that legal through net neutrality?”

Telus spokesman Shawn Hall says the changes comply with current regulations outlining the concept of net neutrality, because Optik TV operates under different regulations on a different network from its Internet service.

You may recall that net neutrality has been a hot topic recently: The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has outlined traffic management rules to prevent discrimination and content blocking, and last month prohibited Videotron and Bell from giving preferential treatment to their own content on their wireless network.

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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