A bit OT, but Cox San Diego has started monitoring and enforcing data caps. I got the following bit of e-mail today:
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Dear Cox High Speed Internet Customer,
We'd like to take this opportunity to announce the availability of the Data Usage Meter. This new feature provides an easy way to check monthly household high-speed Internet data usage at any time. Monthly data usage is the amount of data that users send, receive, download or upload each month for movies and videos, photos, web surfing, email, gaming, and other files.
Each of our packages has a specific data usage amount. The amount depends on your Cox High Speed Internet package and corresponds to the speeds provided with the package. Our speediest package provides the highest usage amount. You are currently subscribed to the Premier Package which has a monthly data usage amount of 250 Gigabytes (GB). This is equivalent to streaming about 138 standard definition movies, or 83 high definition movies in a month*.
The vast majority of our customers do not exceed their usage amount in a month and Cox does not charge you an additional fee if you exceed it. However, if you find that you are exceeding the usage amount for your package, you should check for the following potential causes:
An unsecured wireless home network. If your wireless router does not have security enabled, others outside your home may be using your Internet service. Cox provides a free tool to test the security of your home network. The Home Network Security Check can be accessed by logging into your account via myaccount.cox.net which will place you into Internet Tools. From there, simply select the Home Network tab
A computer virus. If your computer is infected with a virus, it may be transmitting large amounts of data without your knowledge. Cox strongly advocates Internet safety and security. That's why we offer all of our High Speed Internet customers free security software that will help protect your computers. Cox Security Suite Powered by McAfee® will shield you from many viruses, spam, phishing and spyware. It even comes with parental controls.
To download your copy in just a few minutes, simply visit myaccount.cox.net and select the Security Suite tab in Internet Tools.
To view your current data usage, follow these easy steps:
1. Visit myaccount.cox.net
2. Sign in with your primary Cox username and password
3. Select the "Data Usage Allowance" tab on the left bar
The Data Usage Meter shows daily and monthly usage for your account starting with the beginning of your billing period. The monthly view shows the usage by month determined by the date of the end of your billing period. Over time, you will be able to see your household usage over the previous 12 months. The Data Usage Meter is only available to primary account users and secondary user accounts with billing access.
If you would like to learn more about the Data Usage Meter and how it works, please click here. To view the Cox High Speed Internet Acceptable Use Policy please visit.
You can also contact your local Cox customer service center for more information. Visit to find your local Cox contact number.
Thank you for choosing Cox
* Based on 1.8 GB for a Standard Definition Movie, 3 GB for a High Definition Movie
They curiously refuse to say exactly what happens if you exceed the cap, stating only that they will work with you to find out if you have any viruses, etc using bandwidth and to get you set up with the proper service tier for your needs.
I have the $62/month 25 Mbps Premiere service tier, which includes 250 GB/month (combined download+upload). This is plenty for me, since I'm just one guy--a bandwidth hog, but just one guy (my housemate/landlord spends most of his time at his girlfriend's and only uses bandwidth for web surfing and minor downloads when he's here in any case). The usage meter says that I consumed 94 GB last month and I'm at 130 GB this month with 5 days to go in the billing cycle. I can see where this could be tight for a household of three or more heavy network users.
Cox says that if you need more you might need to move to the next service tier, which are large price jumps (next up from what I have is 50 Mbps/400 GB/month cap "Ultimate" service for $100/month, a 61% increase over what I'm paying now. The speed would be sweet, but I can't claim to need it and it's certainly not worth another $38/month (it also needs a DOCSIS 3.0 modem).
This post was kind of television reception related, inasmuch as I stream and download a lot of television from Netflix, Amazon and other sources