Time Warner Cable to expand bandwidth caps, 40GB per month

TWC will be expanding its test of bandwidth caps to more cities in the coming weeks. Beaumont, Texas was the testing ground for TWC and has decided that its 40 GB caps for internet usage worked so well that they would expand the trials to other cities.

The new locations have not yet been announced but the unthinkably low 40GB cap may upset hundreds of thousands of users as streaming video services like Netflix, Hulu and YouTube could easily put you over that barrier with moderate usage, especially if it were HD material.

Alley Insider points out that TWC is not targeting a specific group like Comcast did with its 250 GB monthly cap but is going after moderate users as well. This new cap may also point to a new revenue model where overages could be charged to users or force them to upgrade their service.

This new limitation has a much more tangible impact than Comcast's 250 GB cap which targeted only the heaviest of users. Think of this scenario, a typical family of four with a son who likes to game on Xbox Live, a daughter who chats with friends on a webcam and parents who stream Netflix movies on the weekends; they could easily blow the cap.

TWC will be walking on very thin ice when it implements these new caps to users. It may face a backlash of consumers who leave TWC behind when they get their first bill showing data overages.

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