MTS Should Increase the Reduced Speeds (if usage is greater then 15GB/month) on the Wireless Network

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I understand it is good thing to reduce speeds for customers who use more then 15GB in a billing cycle to give fair network speeds for everyone, but I feel the speeds should just be a little faster. Yes, 512Kbps is a OK speed, but you cannot get a YouTube video to stream with that speed. The excessive usage policy does say it may take more time to stream a video, but it does not say it won't stream at all. That is exactly the case, videos will not stream at all depending on the video. I feel that at least 1Mbps would be a fair speed for reduced speed customers. This way video, and games should work with the speed. I know MTS is making many improvements on the wireless network and I myself have noticed much faster speeds, and I feel the reduced speed can be increased a little bit. Or perhaps raising the reduced speed cap from 15GB to 20GB? There are a few options that can be look at.

I hope my concern will be brought up upon.

Thank you
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Dan, Champion

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Posted 3 years ago

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Jessica, Alum

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Hi Dan, 
Thanks for the note. We'll certainly pass your feedback along. Have a great day! 
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CoryB, Champion

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MTS tries to strike a balance on having fixed billing costs and meeting customer needs. The competitors will allow you to go over your data allowance without issue or reduction in speed but they will bill extra for that additional usage.

If you find you often exceed the 15 GB threshold with MTS a possible suggestion may be to look at what in your usage is causing this volume of data usage and what alternatives there might be to help bring the total down.
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Dan, Champion

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I can control how much data I use and not go over 15GB, but if I tether to my computer I go over it. 15GB is not a lot of data anymore.
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JT

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Unfortunately for MTS they have to realize that the way people use data is changing. People watch Netflix a lot these days and that chews through data pretty quick. Instead of telling the customer to change the way they use their product or watch that you don't use to much on your UNLIMITED plan, maybe they should take some proactive steps and get with the times because it's only going to get worse. Their data usage policies are antiquated and will not be able to be sustained for much longer.
(Edited)
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JT

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I have a few comments.

Also unlike other competitors MTS offers some excellent home Internet plans that have no monthly limit to data used. Additionally, MTS will provide a free WiFi router as part of their home service which you can use with your smart phone while at home without impacting your data usage on your cell phone plan. MTS also works to have a wide range of locations in the community offering WiFi hotspots to MTS customers. Again, these do not count towards your smart phone data usage.
I don't think this is true at all. From reading the posts here, talking to various customers and from my own experience, MTS takes a very reactionary stance when it comes to home internet. If you are living in Winnipeg you probably don't have many complaints as the service in Winnipeg is acceptable. The problem is when you get into the rural areas. I'm not saying Tedoule Lake but 10 mins (8 kms) from the perimeter  in a town of 2500 I would expect more that 3 Mbps down and more choices than just a 7 Mbps plan. Not excellent in my books. Sure it's unlimited but with terrible donwload speeds it would take me 2 months to use any decent amount . And sure there are lots of hotspots in Winnipeg and that's great but if you travel outside the perimeter you are back on 4G/LTE. As for the free WiFi router, it really makes no difference as most people already have their own anyway but as per my last comment if you live outside the city it may not be usable because of the poor home internet provided. While there are ways to minimize your usage on 4G/LTE there are a lot of customers that get the unlimited service because that is all that is available to them in their area.

Another possibility that is sometimes discussed on the Internet is having customers of heavy data services, like Netflix, approach those companies about covering the data costs for using the service. I know there is already one such deal in place in Canada. I am sure if Netflix was to call up MTS today and offer to pay the full price of all smart phone data used by their service that agreement would quickly be accepted
I don't believe that a ISP has a right to ask for subsidies from a content provider to meet customer demand. Being a service provider means you provide service and you do not get to dictate to customers what they can and can't use it for(providing it's legal and within the TOS) as Netflix is.Instead of wasting time, money and resources fighting this, ISPs should be looking at ways to improve and enhance their service. I know everything costs money and enhancing service costs money as well but the fact that a lot of MTS' technology has not been updated sufficiently (hence all of the congestion issues and limited service in many areas) within the last 15 years they are now playing catch up and they have to pay for it. As for the deal that Netflix has in place with the other ISP,  I would very much like to see the terms of the deal.
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Dan, Champion

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I agree with JT! High speed internet service may be alright in Winnipeg, but in rural areas the speeds and service is not so great. I am in a rural about 1 hour North of Winnipeg and I am paying $61 a month for 3Mbps and usually slower and that does drop the connection a lot. Where as in Winnipeg you'd get 20Mbps for that same price. MTS does not supply a home wifi router for customer in rural areas we have to pay $99 for that. Also to get a tech support person to come out we don't have the option of having them come evenings or weekends, it's during the day during the week or nothing. So I do not agree with you CoryB, there is nothing out MTS Internet service that is outstanding. Yes the data usage may be unlimited, MTS does have that advantage over Shaw, but it's no help when you have such slow speeds and pay so much for it. Rural Internet service needs some upgrades.
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CoryB, Champion

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You need to also keep in mind the increased costs for providing service in rural areas. In an urban residential setting it is not uncommon to have 100 possible service addresses within a 2 KM stretch while in rural areas that same area might have 25 possible service addresses. As has been indicated MTS is not charging proportional rates to provide service and actually tries to keep fees reasonable in rural areas.

If MTS service is so bad in rural areas why don't people switch to the competition out there? The reality of providing service to rural areas is that the distances involved make it challenging for any company. I know I have talked with people using a rural competitor and they have similar complaints.

In terms of high usage services, the trend globally is to move home internet service to metered (usage based) billing. The two big cable competitors in Canada already have data limits on their home based service. Home based internet is already covered under the same "Excessive Usage" policy as all wireless plans have been for a number of years. Additionally, the policy does call out streaming services as a potential area that may violate the TOS (terms of service). There are also cases in the US where streaming services have both been throttled by providers and paid providers to improve access to customers. This is the trend on where the market is heading and if you want to be a proactive consumer you would be contacting the services you use and asking them to partner with your ISP now.
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JT

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I am well aware of the costs involved with servicing rural areas, companies don't get a lot of bang for the buck especially in sparsely populated areas. What I'm talking about is the bedroom communities popping up around major cities. There are all kinds of affordable transport technologies out the from high capacity radio to Fibre Optics to bring in enhanced services to these areas and low cost distribution solutions. MTS is behind the ball on these IMO. It would be nice to see some kind of technology road map from MTS to see what we will be seeing in the future.

As per other service providers in the area, some people might not want a 30 ft mast on their house or maybe there is just no other option in the area (I've seen it first hand). But to me the speeds are comparable and for certain users it makes sense.
I'm not opposed to paying more to get more it's just frustrating to not even have that option.

And for the third issue here, once again I'm not against having to pay more for good service and increased data caps. Data caps are not a bad idea but it's how they are managed. In MTS' case throttling someone down to a practically unusable speed is a little ridiculous. As mentioned by Dan in his first post 1 Mbps is reasonable and the cap should be no less than 25 GB. If you want to call it the 25 GB plan that's great but don't call it unlimited because it does in fact have limitations. They like to tout that they have the "TRULY UNLIMITED' plan but this in not in fact true.
Lastly IMO it is not the job of the consumer to regulate the market (Especially in telecommunications). It's a constantly changing and evolving industry and you can choose to innovate or fall by the wayside. It is not the job of the consumer to pressure content providers to help with network upgrades of ISP. My influence is who I spend money with and that's Netflix at this point. I've paid my subscription fee and I've paid my ISP why should I now have to tell them play nice together?
And there are other streaming services out there as well why should one of them be singled out? Another option is to ask ISP customers to help subsidize network upgrades for a predetermined amount of time (ie: $10/month for 2 years) to help offset increased costs. I would do this in a second if it meant improved and reliable service. So far no one has asked and that's a shame.
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This is exactly what I am trying to say! The rural communities don't have great High Speed internet service and it does cost a lot for MTS to bring good quality service to these locations, so the other option we have is to use the Cellular Data Network, I can only get 3Mbps on my DSL connection because of my area, but I have a great cellular LTE data speeds around 30Mbps, so that's what my primary internet service is going to be. But it would be so much better if the cap was raised or the reduced speed was a little higher. What way I don't even have to bother with the slow DSL and MTS doesn't have to rush to improve the service more in those areas where a great cellular data network already exists.
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Dan, Champion

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That is my problem, I need to make sure I do not use YouTube or Music streaming service too much because once I hit the 15GB cap, it feels your phone is in Jail for the rest of that month. Raising the speed to 1Mbps would be excellent! I know MTS has raised the speed from 128Kbps to 512Kbps and raised the cap from 10GB to 15GB, but I think just a touch more speed would be perfect!
Thanks
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Mike Rossco Ross

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I understand 'fair usage' I get it but really, I use my full 15gb streaming music at work.. but 512kbps after I hit the cap? That's just unfair. I pay 30$ for my data, and went with unlimited or now 'flat rate' with the expectation to not be pushed aside for almost 99% of my regular data speeds...
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It's a trade off. A competitor doesn't slow your speed when you exceed their version of "fair usage" however they charge you $70/GB once you are past the fair usage.
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Mike Rossco Ross

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No, I completely agree about the fair usage, I would opt for the same if I were running the company. I just feel the speeds could be a tad faster once the cap it hit.
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Wally

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Yes, a 99% speed reduction, comparable to dial up speeds of yesteryear, on Canada's so called "fastest network" is most definitely excessive and a big contradiction! So called "fair usage" policies have little to do with sharing network bandwidth fairly. If they did, then you wouldn't be throttled 24/7, with a 99% speed reduction, after hitting the threshold. At 3:00 AM, when no one else is using the network, you are still throttled by a 99% speed reduction, unfairly. 

The real fear is that customers will drop their landline internet connections and opt for a mobile only service. It is more profitable to gouge, by having your customers pay twice, 3 times or even more for home, cottage, mobile and landline phone, never mind TV services that all use the same connection. There is a growing trend towards "cord cutters", internet TV boxes, VOIP services, and mobile only phones to reduce costs for the same services. Customers cannot afford a second mortgage!

In the US, you are throttled after hitting a threshold, but ONLY when the network is congested, on all top providers now. You are not unfairly punished by a 99% speed reduction when and where sufficient network capacity exists. Studies conducted there have since indicated that changes to this true "unlimited data" service actually has an almost insignificant effect on network congestion and speeds. No, we don't have the same network capacity here, especially in many rural locations where data services are already practically useless on weekends and evenings, but throttling ONLY when capacity is  unavailable, and not to a 99% reduction would not hurt anything. Offsetting data usage to non- peak times might actually even improve existing congestion problems. 

Too bad this will never happen! It is far more likely that in one years time, bell/mts, on Canada's so called "fastest network", will lower data caps significantly and do away with existing "flat rate" plans for good.
(Edited)