Hey Lifehacker, I have friends with two young teenagers (11 and 13) who are screaming for their own mobile phones. The parents are concerned about cost overruns, particularly with data limits. What they are looking for is a plan (preferably pre-paid) that has a "real" data limit. If the use gets to that limit then the connection is either shaped or cut off. No risk of excess data charges and parents don’t have to worry about a surprise bill. Any suggestions?
Tagged With shaping
The ability to sync files stored on SkyDrive with your computer can be very useful, especially given the generous space allocation (7GB for everyone, up to 25GB for early adopters). However, one Lifehacker reader has noticed that keeping a large SkyDrive collection in sync can use a lot of bandwidth, potentially trigging shaping or an excess usage bill.
We told you back in September that the ACCC was taking Optus to court over whether its shaping policies for broadband plans were adequately disclosed in advertising. Yesterday, the Federal Court found against Optus, and the ACCC says it will continue to pursue companies that don't make their broadband policies transparent.
A quick update on our story from yesterday about Telstra increasing its shaping speeds: the BigPond Twitter feed says that the upgrade will happen in late September and will apply to Elite and Ultimate plans with a monthly quota of 100GB or more.
Back in June, the ACCC took Optus to court over advertisements for "unlimited" plans that were not in practice unlimited. Now the telco is facing another courtroom stoush over broadband plans where the shaping conditions are said to have not been fully disclosed.
If you don't fancy excess usage charges, shaping remains the most palatable alternative. BigPond customers on Telstra's more expensive plans will now find the experience a little less painful, with shaping speeds increasing fourfold from 64Kbps to 256Kbps.
Shaping an Internet connection to lower the speed is a common tactic by ISPs to control pricing, and the shaped speed is almost invariably 64Kbps. Internode has upped the ante on its ADSL2+ Extreme offerings by shifting its shaping rate to 128Kbps on home plans and 512Kbps on business plans.
Shaping -- lowering the speed of your Internet connection once you've exceeded your monthly download limits -- is an annoying but seemingly permanent feature of the Australian communications landscape. Lifehacker 101 explains the issues surrounding shaping you need to consider before choosing your Internet service provider (ISP).