Suddenlink has confirmed reports that it is charging users a premium to avoid broadband usage caps.
Customers can avoid worrying about overage charges by purchasing one of the two fastest available broadband tiers offered by the MSO in their area. Subscribers on the fastest available speeds will be enrolled in the unlimited plans at no charge for the first year, but users are charged $5 a month after the first year and $10 a month after the second year.
Suddenlink joins AT&T (NYSE: T) and Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), which have offered similarly expensive means to avoid usage charges.
"As noted before, we are fully committed to moving full-speed ahead with our network investments for our Operation GigaSpeed project and to bring innovations, new technologies and faster Internet speeds to the U.S. market, and making them widely available and accessible to our customers," said Suddenlink Co-President and Chief Operating Officer Hakim Boubazine.
In an earnings call just before Altice NV assumed control of Suddenlink and Jerry Kent stepped aside, the former CEO noted, "Overage charges have become a significant revenue stream for us."
Meanwhile, Suddenlink customers have been given the rationale for caps with this message: "Data plans are one step among several that help us continue delivering a quality Internet experience for our customers. Other steps include the sizable investments we've made and continue making to provide greater downstream and upstream system capacity and more bandwidth per home. Even with those investments, a relatively few customers use a disproportionate amount of data, which can negatively affect the Internet experience of those who use far less. That's why, as a complement to our network investments, we've established data plans."
- read this Suddenlink press release
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UPDATED: This article has been updated to clarify an error: Suddenlink users can avoid usage caps by purchasing one of the two top tiers.