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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Canadian ISPs Continued Traffic Throttling

Bell Canada is known as the largest telecommunication company in North America, offering telephone, satellite, and Internet services. The company has recently informed its business partners that it was going to shift its focus towards higher networking and traffic speeds.

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The letter sent to the Internet service providers read that since the upcoming November Bell Canada would start a transferring process of its users to network facilities free from traffic-shaping software.

The industry observers have already commented upon this move, saying that the company’s intentions violate federal rules governing the web, because they believe such move is absolutely unnecessary.

The company explained its decision to decrease Internet traffic back three years ago when they wanted to address congestion on the network because of the increased use of P2P file-sharing within peak periods. Although congestion still exists, the company claims that the impact of P2P applications on congestion has decreased.

Local media stated last week that the company’s move only draws further into question why the largest ISPs go on with the anti-competitive tactic. Meanwhile, professor Michael Geist is also concerned with the impact of the Bell Canada’s decision on the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission rules. He was the one who made a suggestion to the country’s regulator to investigate other Internet service providers who deploy broad based throttling practices, which don’t comply with the CRTC policy.

Indeed, the traffic throttling Bell Canada and other largest web infrastructure owners have been applying within the past 3 years won’t be forgotten soon. A lot of the largest Internet service providers and many others suffered after the Internet cable had been choked. The same troubles started with so-called usage-based billing. This practice was recently introduced in the country, stating that a user has to pay more if they exceed a specified amount of downloaded data a month. Big Internet service providers had to agree with this strategy, but the smaller companies argued that this practice would just make it impossible for them to compete on the market. Taking into account all these facts, the Canadian regulation outfit now has to reconsider its position on the usage-based billing. A final decision on the issue will be handed down this fall.

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