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Congestion Fears For UK ADSL ISP's

Posted: 11th Jan, 2006 By: MarkJ
ADSLGuide has spotted an interesting article at Light Reading, which examines the growing problem of broadband congestion among UK ADSL ISP's as they cram more and more users onto ever decreasing capacity:

NetEvidence, which provides a network performance reporting service, monitors around 2,000 sites and is seeing disgruntled broadband users realize their connections aren't performing the way they expected.

Thomas points out that contention problems have coincided with a change in BT Wholesale's pricing model. Under the standard model, ISPs paid BT £40,000 per year for a 155-Mbit/s central office, which would accomodate around 8,000 users, and then an additional fee for each ADSL line. But under the capacity-based pricing scheme introduced in 2004, the cost of the same 8,000-line central office rose to a flat rate of £316,200 per year, no matter how many users are actually connected -- hence the cramming.

BT also introduced a usage-based model, which works on the assumption that the average user will consume 20 kbit/s, equating to 200 megabytes per day. As the daily average has inched up to 300 and 400 megabytes, ISPs are losing more and more money on subscribers.

It's a long, yet interesting, read and is quite insightful for anybody that doesn't already comprehend exactly how broadband ADSL providers work.

Unfortunately the key point of ever decreasing performance is something quite factual and we've seen it become a growing problem over the past year.

Most solve it by switching to another provider in the hope of seeing lower congestion, although over the long term it will continue to be a problem. More @ Light Reading.
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