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Is unlimited, really unlimited?
When itís at a very cheap price, not entirely.† They normally advertise unlimited with a fair usage policy.
What we can say for certain is that at busy times, speed can be affected when users decide to use peer2peer or download a very large amount of data, running into several gigs.† It also costs the ISP money for all the data transfer.†† So they do need to keep some control on data transfer when a user is given unlimited usage.
In view of this, many broadband providers employ traffic management on their network.† This may affect the speed of certain types of applications, such as peer to peer.† Some may ban this type of usage altogether or impose a speed restriction.† Some may give priority to certain applications, such as web browsing, email, or video-on demand.†
However, what most people don’t realise is that their usage is probably below the usage limits offered by capped broadband packages anyway.†
So do I really need unlimited usage for broadband?
The vast majority of users can get away with a 2GB limit.† Letís assume our average user browses normal websites for 3 to 4 hours a day, checks email and downloads maybe 5 to 10 songs in a month.† This user would comfortably get away with 2GB usage.
Network bandwidth monitor.Your usage may be much lower or higher than you expected.† In that case, there might be a cheaper, or more suitable package for you.†In the end, the cheapest is not always the best choice.† There are plenty of competitive packages for a few pounds more that might be more suitable for your usage patterns.† Donít forget to check the quality of their support, should you need it, and network reliability.Some broadband providers allow you to check your usage online.† If yours does not, there are many free tools available to help you check your usage, such as the
Beware of unlimited usage if it sounds too cheap.† Many Broadband providers do offer truly unlimited usage, but at a slightly higher price. You get what you pay for.