Vodafones new “Red” ADSL2 network has launched. And it’s a big step in the right direction. I didn’t actually think so at first. Here’s what I wrote about their three broadband plans before I noticed the cool bit that I’ll mention later:
1) “Retarded”. $70/month. Up to 24Mbits/sec, with a data cap of 1GB/month. An extra 1GB for $5. Note: At 24Mbits/sec you will go through 1GB of data in just under 6 minutes. This is the ideal plan for people who enjoy paying for things and then not using them. You may as well burn $70 each month and then scrawl “BROADBAND I HAS IT” on your computer monitor. In crayon.
2) “1998”. $80/month. Up to 24Mbits/sec, with a data cap of 5GB/month. An extra 5GB for $10. Over 30 minutes at full speed. Truly, the future is now. Please send me my robot butler.
3) “Getting there”. $90/month. Up to 24Mbits/sec, with a data cap of 20GB/month. An extra 20GB for $30. Their maximum X-TREME shit-yourself awesome pack. So awesome, it actually starts to hit the very lower limit of my interest.
But then, and this is the interesting bit, I re-read the thing and saw this at the end:
“Those who go over their limit can double their data for $5, $10 and $30 respectively, or continue surfing at 64kbps without incurring extra charges.”
Fuck! Yes! Someone who has decided to manage their network sanely, by speed-restricting people who hit the edges of their caps, instead of just gouging them for more money! BRILLIANT!
Okay, obviously 64Kbits/sec is weak sauce, but the fact that they are doing this at all is pretty much the kind of thing I was hoping unbundling would bring. A very big step in the right direction. This means that people will see hitting their data caps as an inconvenience rather than something that will cost them serious money. I’m talking to vodafone tomorrow.