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Why Should I Worry About Data Caps?

You are probably searching for various ways that will allow you to manage your home-based ISP’s data cap without paying more! Maybe you are trying to control extra charges on your monthly bill and keep it as low as possible. Or try some new tips to keep your data usage on the lower side. Though these cost-saving hacks are likely to help you avoid those pesky overage fees that may want you to scream out loud, hey, you can always control them effectively. Or you can learn to live with them without a fuss!

Is There a Choice With Data Caps?

 According to recent studies, every American household today has nearly twenty-five connected devices. It means that more broadband data is being used today than before! This also means that you probably have no choice but to live with data caps since these are ever so cleverly interlaced into your ISP’s monthly plans that you eventually learn to manage these with ease. What’s more, the percentage of streaming subscriptions has considerably increased across various demographics, especially with cord-cutting on the rise. And the apparent convenience that came with streaming, these percentages are only expected to rise in the years ahead.

With people not shifting back, streaming subscriptions are here to stay. And this is just an example of how a major online activity can affect internet networks—no wonder you will find data caps as a major component of every American ISP in the country.

But First… What Are Data Caps? 

Data caps are defined as limits that are set on your usage by your ISP every month. This shows that your provider offers a certain limit of bandwidth on the selected network so that no internet subscriber uses more than their fair share of service. That’s because the lower your monthly cap, the less you will be able to achieve anything on the web as the service slows down/gets throttled or you are charged extra for exceeding monthly limits.

Sometimes one takes place, sometimes the other, and sometimes both takes place. Going over the basics is just a way to tackle data caps on your home-based ISP, so you know how to manage your monthly plan better. Once you can get this under check, you can then see which ISPs are enforcing data caps on the service connection.

Which Internet Providers Enforce Data Caps? 

While we have reviewed just a handful of ISPs in the U.S., this is just to give you an idea of the ones that do enforce a data cap. Once you understand data caps better, it will be easier to handle them effectively:

Internet ProviderData Caps
AT&T350GB (fixed wireless), 1TB (DSL) & unlimited (fiber-optic)
Mediacom200GB-6TB
HughesNetUpto 200GB
XfinityUpto 1.2TB
CoxUpto 1.28TB
Wide Open West (WOW)1.5-3TB (for major markets)
Rise Broadband250GB (on some) & unlimited (on others)

What If I Exceed My Monthly Data Limit? 

It is important to note that there are some consequences if you exceed the set data limit. Different ISPs have different strategies and policies if data limits are surpassed by the user. Subscribers may be charged extra for the additional data usage without throttling their speeds. While many others may have a different strategy: they may throttle your internet speed before the next billing cycle opens and may offer a surplus amount for extra charges.

Let’s take the example of AT&T Internet, which offers a variety of connection types and monthly deals to its customers. These may come either with limited data options or unlimited ones.  However, subscribers have to pay $10 for every 50GB they use. AT&T customers of its fixed wireless or DSL service have the option to consume extra data worth $200 and no more. Though if customers opt for an IPBB connection, they can use data worth $100 every month only. And that’s not all. AT&T even gives you plenty of ways to get unlimited data for your regular use as well. You can either pay $30 every month and benefit from all that unlimited data allowance or bundle up AT&T internet and DIRECTV and reap the several benefits of unlimited data allowance. If you are experiencing slow speeds, you could check internet speed to ensure that you are getting what you are paying for.

If we look at other ISPs, CenturyLink does not charge its customers an overage fee, but you can expect the connection to slow down until your next billing cycle. Cox Communications also has an overage charge of $10 that’s for every 50GB of excess data you use. However, the internet provider does offer you 500GB of data for a monthly $29.99 and even unlimited data for a monthly $49.99, only if you opt for the additional data plan. If you choose HughesNet, expect your speed to be throttled if you exceed your monthly data limit, even though its monthly plan does come with monthly bonus data of 50GB already included.

And customers have the option to purchase additional data tokens any time they need them. So these are just some examples of how various internet providers are tackling data caps at their end.

How Can Internet Users Monitor Their Monthly Data Consumption?

This is an important query; fortunately, there are innumerable ways to keep a check on data consumption. And most ISP offers you ways to do so. You may regularly be notified via text or email if you cross a certain level in your monthly usage.

For instance, AT&T pops up a warning to its users every time they consume 55 percent or even 100 percent of their monthly data allowance. With Cox, you may receive a notification if you have exceeded your monthly data limit, or you can keep an eye via your Cox account or even via the Cox Connect App. Make sure you check best internet providers in your area before subscribing to an ISP. You’ll be required to do your research to get fiber internet at the best price.

The Bottom Line, 

We recommend customers s sign up with an ISP that will be able to monitor their monthly data usage. While one should be careful of their data usage, especially if their chosen service provider is not cap-friendly but it is important to know that most people don’t even come close to their data limits. That said, unless you are a gamer or enjoy streaming your TV favorites daily, then that is a different thing, and your data is bound to be exceeded. Also, the number of internet users in the household determines if the data allowance is high or not. If that’s the case, then we suggest that you opt for a blazing-fast fiber-based connection so that you can enjoy unlimited data, super-fast speeds, and terrific bandwidth at your address.

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