[thechat] Internet Rates

Madhu Menon webguru at vsnl.net
Mon Oct 14 06:57:01 CDT 2002

At 12:20 PM 14-10-02, Syed Zeeshan Haider wrote:
>Since that discussion, I have been wondering about internet access rates in
>other countries. My questions are:
>Do you pay for internet access? (at home)
>If yes, then how much?

Yes, I pay for Internet access. Wish I didn't have to, but I do.

While there are unlimited usage plans, the throughput on those plans with
most ISPs sucks big time. Have to check on exact pricing.

I pay on an hourly basis. About Rs. 740 for 100 hours. About US$0.15 per hour.
What REALLY screws us, however, aren't the ISP charges but the phone
company bills. We're charged for one phone call every 3 minutes - Rs. 1.20
per call. So one hour of Internet access costs me Rs. 24 per hour in phone
bills - about US$0.50

How do you like that? Phone bills are more than 3 times the cost of
Internet access. Bah!

DSL has proven to be a big flop, probably because there was only one ISP
offering it, and almost everyone who used them started screaming about
their incompetence (people with 64K "broadband" connections bitched about
getting less throughput than a 28.8K modem.)

Cable modem is slowly coming around, though providers are still not willing
to commit on uptime and reliability/ availability, which bugs me. I depend
on the Net for my livelihood. :(

Cable modem account costs:

Modem cost: ~US$160
Monthly charges: US$30 for 64K and 1 GB download limit

(Mind you, Indian salaries are much lower than USA, so $30 isn't exactly cheap)

I'm sticking with dialup for now. But high phone bills may force me to
change soon.

>Is there any free internet access in your country for home users?

We did have a couple of moron companies that tried it and sunk well before
the dotcom bust even got into full swing. Indians will latch onto anything
with the word "free" in it, so it screwed their pipes. Not sustainable...

Besides, the only way they displayed ads was using their special dialler
application. It didn't take very long before most people figured out that
Windows DUN could be used instead, neatly bypassing the dialler. :))

There, I've just blown 3 minutes of phone time. I'm sending you a bill. ;)



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Madhu Menon
Internet User Experience Consultant

Content * Interfaces * Usability * Net Strategy

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