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AT&T Quietly Introduces $10/Month DSL

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the not-what-i-call-broadband dept.

Communications 258

prostoalex writes "As part of the deal with the FCC to approve the AT&T/BellSouth merger, AT&T started selling, but not advertising, a $10-per-month DSL service in 22 states, AP has learned. 'The service provides download speeds of up to 768 kilobits per second and upload speeds of up to 128 kbps, matching the speeds of the cheapest advertised AT&T plan, which costs $19.95 per month in the nine-state former BellSouth area and $14.99 in the 13 states covered by AT&T before the acquisition.'"

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And what's to stop them from... (5, Insightful)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558359)

...oversubscribing on a small amount of bandwidth and end up clipping real-world performance down to ISDN or dial-up levels on a regular basis?

Re:And what's to stop them from... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558733)

Because it's cable companies that do that. I've never heard of a DSL company throttling bandwidth on a regular basis.

Re:And what's to stop them from... (4, Insightful)

latras (873952) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559411)

But at $10/month, if you can get even 128k, then that's a win. Since nowadays, dialup service is $9.95/mo. plus with not having to wait for the connection to establish, etc.

If it were free it would still be overpriced (5, Insightful)

javakah (932230) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558405)

Dealing with AT&T is just not worth it for cheap Internet Service. Even if it were free, I don't think I'd go for it. Besides, if it goes anything like my experience getting phone service from them, that $10 will really be $25 a month with all the extra fees and surcharges they are sure to add on.

Other problems (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558487)

DSL is available in my area, but not my prefix. So I'd have to change my phone number to get it. OK, I could probably deal with that, but then they'd charge me for the line change too. So I stay with cable for now. DSL would probably be cheaper per month, but I just hate dealing with the phone company soooo much....

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (2, Informative)

hobo sapiens (893427) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558993)

Oh, stop your kvetching. How on earth can you find fault with them for offering $10 a month DSL? Seriously?

I use AT&T and it works fine. I never have any problems with the service nor the customer service. Actually, their customer service is way better than most companies I have dealt with.

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (3, Insightful)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559223)

I've been with AT&T DSL for about a month. There were lots of problems getting it installed (turns out the problem was that none of the four telephone lines to my apartment were physically hooked up, but only the last tech bothered to go into the building's phone closet to check). But now that it's on, it works well.

I have a plethora of high-speed internet choices where I live. I went with AT&T because it offered twice the speed of Speakeasy and the other resellers at half the cost AND NO CONTRACT. That was the big problem I had with most of the resellers.

Another option would have been Comcast, but the Comcast lady told me that cable internet doesn't work with Macs (which I know is a lie because I've had Roadrunner in the past). She said if I can't install Comcast's software on Windows XP I can't have internet.

In the end, I'm paying around $25/month for three megabits from AT&T that work fine so far. Comcast would have been six megabits, but for $75/month.

I have a lot of reasons to hate the beast that is Southwestern Bell/SBC/AT&T/Ameritech/MegaGiantConHugeCo [] , but this time around I'm moderately pleased.

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (5, Insightful)

tknd (979052) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558995)

I hate dealing with both the phone companies and the cable companies. I only have two options where I live: ATT or Timewarner. I think both companies are equally incompetent and the services are crap. For example ATT phone bills don't make much sense and have lots of additional charges. If there is a technical problem, they will charge you an arm and a leg. Meanwhile, Timewarner prices are too high and they will only offer lower rates as long as you purchase more services from them. Even then, the service you do get may have problems or have setup fees and miscellaneous tech charges associated with having some idiot tech come to your house just to flip a switch. (Side note: we all know that he's not really just flipping a switch, but rather intentionally making it so that only the cables connected to the TVs you asked are functional while the other cables are not!)

And because both companies know they're so close to having a monopoly over the services, they do not put any effort into making the service better. Instead they offer less service at cheaper prices and increase the top end service (which was really yesterday's normal service), call it "Pro" and charge an arm and leg for it. At the end of the day, no matter who's charging you, you're still paying a premium for poor service.

It's the new business strategy of America: don't hire engineers or researchers to improve your technology to have a superior product or service, instead just hire more marketers and business people to come up with new ways to sell the same crappy product.

You've got lots more than two options (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559457)

"Everybody hates the phone company." [] And cable companies also suck, plus they're the ones encouraging their competition to cap the monthly download capacity and ban anything resembling a server from residential broadband, and are really much better at selling Pay-Per-View than visionary telecom services.

But they're not the only options for service, even if they're the only ones bringing wire to your house. There are lots of non-facilities-based broadband carriers that provide the upstream Internet connectivity and resell the telco access - I use, and a number of friends use Speakeasy, and there are numerous others. And there are other carriers like Covad who rent the copper from the telco and provide their own DSLAMs over it, either selling directly or selling to the non-facilities-based carriers who offer them as well as telco service.

For basic service, the resellers and niche ISPs usually cost more than the telco, though they're usually giving you a real price and not some three-month-trial rate. But if you want static IP addresses, you'll find that most of the telco services end up charging just as much as the resellers, even though their actual _costs_ are probably lower. Another big difference is policies about things like running servers; many of the resellers are quite upfront about "yes, we're giving you *Internet* access, not just couch-potato consumer service", and you can do anything except spam and maybe run some kinds of IRCbots. By contrast, telco and cable broadband providers used to have policies against using multiple computers on the same connection, or using wireless, or required you to use PPPoE which they wouldn't support on Mac or Linux (even though there's perfectly adequate Linux client.)

They also tend to give you better customer service - more responsive and more competent. It's not always faster for repairs - I've had DSL go out three or four times in the last 5 years, once because the DSL modem failed (they helped me diagnose it, and shipped me a replacement box next day), and a couple of times because some telco installer did something in one of the junction boxes down the road (the ISP was probably a bit slower at getting it fixed than going directly to the telco would have been, but reaching the ISP's techs was a lot faster which helped make up for it, and the last time that happened I could use a neighbor's wireless to stay on the net.)

In some places, there's cellular-phone wireless data (everybody hates their cellphone companies also, and most of them want to charge you old-pager-service pricing per KB, or not let you connect your phone to your PC.) And there's satellite service (which has technical limitations due to the geosynchronous-orbit hop, but I'm not going to say they suck, because you knew it was satellite when you ordered it, and you probably bought it because it was the only thing you could get other than paying business prices for a telco T1 circuit.)

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (1)

cdw38 (1001587) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559065)

About a year ago I finally got one of my family members off of AOL dial-up (at $26/month) and onto Verizon's $15/month 768/128 plan. A total of $16-17 a month and it's been completely reliable. I'd find it hard to believe the OTD price on this new service would really be considerably cheaper.

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559363)

You are right on about their phone service. They advertised to me, $11 a month for no frills, basic local and $.10 a minute long distance. I find out AFTER the phone call, in which I inquired about ANY additional fees, that I have to pay $2 for the ABILITY to dial long distance. Then exorbitant fees for other miscellaneous crap. I had switched because I was offered 4 months free basically, but that ran out much sooner. I happily switched back to COX san diego and I pay MUCH less for the same damn service.

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (1)

Zephyr14z (907494) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559381)

I had their DSL for a while, but it was their "Ultimate" $30/month version. After taxes and fees, it was about $55/month. I've switched to a faster cable connection, and I'm paying less. As much as I hate dealing with Time Warner, it's still better than AT&T.

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (1)

Idbar (1034346) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559383)

Of course not! However, DSL will not work if you don't have wires... and of course are you putting them? Then you better pay for them! And I never heard of a DSL working stand alone... you MUST have a phone line, and long distance is imperative if you want to connect to websites around the globe. Everything makes perfect sense!

Re:If it were free it would still be overpriced (1)

rossz (67331) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559879)

I agree. They could drop the price to zero and I still won't go for it. Dealing with AT&T is far too painful. They'd have to pay me to take their damn service, and I'm not cheap!

Breaking AT&T news: (-1, Troll)

PurifyYourMind (776223) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558421)

I just pooped my cute little pants.

Re:Breaking AT&T news: (5, Funny)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558533)

I just pooped my cute little pants.
Then I guess right now DSL means do some laundry to you.

Re:Breaking AT&T news: (0, Redundant)

PurifyYourMind (776223) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558865)

You just made me LOL!

Re:Breaking AT&T news: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559339)

I'll reply to your post instead of the one you replied to.

That is the third time today I have seen that post, all in different stories. I don't have the desire to see how many stories it has been posted in, but for a second there I almost thought of doing that.

That price is basically a lie. (5, Insightful)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558443)

From TFA:

Local phone service and a one-year contract are required.
$10/mo my ass. You have to sign up for a POTS line with them, and I'm willing to bet that's going to be at least another $10, not counting all the taxes, fees, and bullshit they attach on to that. ("Cost recovery fee" my ass. Do they still have that one?) And if you already have AT&T for your POTS line, then you're screwed! You're not eligible for the price anyway.

So let's review. It forces people who don't have a line with AT&T, and presumably don't want one, to get one -- upping the price. And people who already have service with them, can't get it.

Nice work, FCC, nice work. This is a 'concession'? What did you have to give them? (Besides your bank account numbers, to deposit the cash.)

Re:That price is basically a lie. (4, Informative)

Constantine XVI (880691) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558499)

If you re-read the TFA, it also said:

who have never had AT&T or BellSouth broadband

Re:That price is basically a lie. (1)

Joffrey (242525) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559659)

I have an AT&T POTS line, with zero frills (not even unlimited local dialing out), for about $17/mo with taxes, fees and so forth. Fully $8-9 of that monthly fee is taxes, fees, and other associated "recoveries," but it is a pretty cheap POTS line, so I still have phone service if the power goes out, etc.

Au Contraire (5, Informative)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558541)

I just ordered it for someone today that already had POTS.
Got the 1.5Mbps package for $20/month. Did it online,
which probably helps.

The catch is that you also have to purchase a DSL modem ($50)
or a combo DSL Modem/Router ($80), plus another $27 for S&H.

And you'll definitely want to skip the $200 technician option
to install it for you.

Re:Au Contraire (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558629)

$27 for shipping? Are they out of their fucking minds? For $27, I expect it to be hand delivered to me same-day by a hot female courier, with a big ol' sloppy blowjob thrown in to boot.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558547)

You have to sign up for a POTS line with them, and I'm willing to bet that's going to be at least another $10

$10? Clean out your head gear, new guy. A POTS line with these jackasses costs $24 per month after you factor in all the bullshit charges and overcharges (like USF fee which is 1.9%, but ATT will charge you 5.9% to collect it). Plus, no doubt they'll throw all sorts of bullshit DSL fees on that portion of the bill. Rural DSL recovery fee, DSL equipment surcharge, Data infrastructure overcharge, BOHICA recovery fee. This $10 a month DSL will cost you $50 for sure.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (1)

grumpyman (849537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558575)

Just $10 for POTS? Our city here in Canada has the good ol' local monopoly equivalent charging $30+ a month for POTS.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558747)

Unless $30 canadian is worth $10-$15 US, you are getting really badly ripped off.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558717)

$10/mo my ass.

OK - Keep it well lubed and you've got a deal.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (1)

Dragonslicer (991472) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558829)

You have to sign up for a POTS line with them
Are there any DSL providers where that isn't a requirement? The brief time that I had Verizon DSL several years ago I also had to have phone service through them.

You don't need a phone line (1, Informative)

rwade (131726) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558895)

AT&T requires a phone line for discounted service. The subscriber still qualifies for service at a higher price.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (1)

the_greywolf (311406) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558913)

You have to sign up for a POTS line with them
Are there any DSL providers where that isn't a requirement?

Qwest doesn't like to admit it, but you can get DSL without POTS through them. They still charge you about half of what the POTS would have cost you, but it can be done. (Or, at least, you could last I checked... About 2 years ago.) The DSL service itself comes without an ISP. So they try to force you onto their MSN service. Tell them you don't use Windows, and they'll "downgrade" you to their ISP - which costs a little more than MSN (IIRC). So you really gain nothing over MSN+POTS+DSL, and it still costs about the same.

Yes, it's called naked DSL (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559061)

like me right now -- naked, with an erection

There used to be, not sure of price. (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559287)

There was a time, before the FCC reneged on Local Loop Unbundling, when some of the "premium" DSL services (e.g. Speakeasy) would sell you 'naked' DSL service, without a POTS line, I'm pretty sure. I think there was a price premium for it over bundled service, but it wasn't as bad as POTS service in some cases, if you had zero need for local dialtone. I looked into it, because I was in a house for a while that had copper running out to it, but no local service. (I would have been a good candidate, but unfortunately after a lot of hemming and hawing with the local telco, they said they couldn't do it. Somehow the line-foot estimates were off and it was just too far.)

So I'm stuck with Comcast.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (1)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559295)

Are there any DSL providers where that isn't a requirement?
Yeah, AT&T. Contrary to what the reacionary twitchers at /. think, AT&T doesn't require you to have their phone service to get their DSL.

I have no AT&T phone service (the tech called it a "dry loop"), but I have AT&T DSL.

The catch is (at least in my area) that AT&T caps you at three megabits. In order to get their six megabit package you have to sign up for phone service.

Re:That price is basically a lie. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559435)

I wonder if its like a few places i have thought about going with...

Without POTS Line:
$40/month - naked DSL

With POTS Line:
$10/month - DSL
$20/month - Phone
+ fee to cover adminstration of fees
+ fee to print bill
+ fee to send bill
+ fee to ...

Basically where you're paying $40-50/month either way(or like 3-5 dollars more for both etc.)

Unfortunately its fairly Similiar to cable tv/internet that i've researched...
Basic cable $45/month
Cable Internet $55/month
Both $50/month
(... for 6 months, then its $110 for both)

Re:That price is basically a lie. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558943)

It's $10 a month, with an additional feature of sending all your packets directly to the NSA at no extra charge!

Oh yeah, you can't opt out of that feature. It's a bundle.

You may not need to keep the POTS line (1)

guisar (69737) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559269)

I used to have DSL- yeah you had to have a POTS to sign up but I cancelled that 8 seconds after the loser installer left the house. They never followed up to see if I kept the POTS. If there's any industry that needs a shakeup it's the telecom one- those early days of small companies offering internet access and the hope (make that a dream) of equal access need to stange a comeback. I will never get any product via AT&T but I do wish they'd start challenging the cable companies so both of these butthead monopolies would start to compete.

OMGz (-1, Troll)

superanonman (1116871) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558445)

768 down? Dayum.. that's fast for 10 years ago. You can almost play CS on that.

Plenty fast for most people (4, Insightful)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558511)

Sure 768k is underspeed for some purposes, but that's plenty fast for most people's day to day usage: web, email and a bit of youtube. 768k is a huge step up from dial up.

Re:Plenty fast for most people (1)

Wilk4 (632760) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558775)

especially when it's the same price as the dial-up you are switching from... I made the switch to verizon's $15 DSL a few years ago. Pretty nice change-up from my 56k that was costing the same. (had a 2nd phone line) I wonder if Verizon will lower their price or boost bandwidth limits to match if you talk to them about switching to this? Anyone try asking yet? Credit card companies offer rate or fee cuts when you call to cancel them in favor of a competitor... wonder if Verizon will...

Re:Plenty fast for most people (1)

Wilk4 (632760) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558847)

... and it's plenty fast for us for most everything... including 2 pcs, mine and my kids surfing away... even upload isn't that bad, though it'd be nice if it matched the 768k download bw... oh well.

Re:Plenty fast for most people (1)

jombeewoof (1107009) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558967)

In My Experience
Verizon will not offer any deals other than a free month or 2. I had them for 2 years @14.99 a month for their 768K DSL, and it seemed like they really didn't care that I was leaving for a competitor (comcast). Then I realized they still charged me every month even after I cancelled for 3 months. I got to a point where I threatened to cancel my land line if they didn't stop charging me for the DSL I no longer wanted or needed.
In short I doubt they'll offer any kind of deals. but then again, wtf do I know.

It was certainly a step up from 23.99/mo for dial up, but I could never go back to anything less than cable now. Even at $10, (and really $10 a month) I wouldn't want DSL, too many problems with my service over those 2 years.

Re:Plenty fast for most people (1)

Gogo0 (877020) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558803)

Shit, 768k down at $10/mo is 128k faster and $55 cheaper than what i have now.
Greetings from interior Alaska.

That said, i still get about 5GB downloaded a day (24hrs), so unless youre downloading DVD9s, the wait isnt too bad for most things.
It hurts when I think of when I was in Japan, though. We had fibre running from the phone pole to the switch upstairs and enough bandwidth that I maxed out my concurrent usenet provider connection limit before the bandwidth ran out -and that was only about $30USD/mo.

Advertising (2, Insightful)

Dr.Merkwurdigeliebe (1055918) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558469)

The article mentioned that it was difficult to locate information about the service. Does anyone know if the FCC has the power to not only force them to offer the plan, but also to make it (reasonably) accessible? I'm not talking about posting it on every billboard, but hey, it looks like they're banking on people not knowing about this service.

Worthless (4, Informative)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558485)

To get ATT DSL, you need to sign up for a 1 or 2 year contract, pay an installation fee, and buy their landline service.

Because anybody with a clue is using VoIP by this point, these terms basically mean their $10 DSL costs $35 (=$10 for DSL + $25 for worthless phone service) PLUS the amortized cost of installation and the effective cost of an illiquid 1-2 year contract.

Note: Last time I priced DSL, these were the requirements. They may have changed, and if so, feel free to correct me. Until T unbundles their services, though, I'm sticking to cable.

Re:Worthless (4, Insightful)

jc42 (318812) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558637)

Because anybody with a clue is using VoIP by this point, ...

Except that many people (more every week) live in areas where the only ISP is the phone company, and they block user-level VoIP (while using it internally themselves).

In such a situation, all the clues in the world won't get you what you want.

It's the old "If you don't like it, you can move."

Re:Worthless (1)

cecil_turtle (820519) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559293)

and they block user-level VoIP
Who is your ISP? I just did some quick searches and didn't find any news of ISP's blocking VoIP since '05 when apparently the FCC hit a few of them with fines for doing so.

Re:Worthless (1)

narced (1078877) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558659)

Does VoIP work that well for you? Where I live (Southern Oregon) a VoIP call has such horrible lag that you end up talking over each other. It is like using CB radio... end each sentence in 'over'.

I guess what I want to know is is there VoIP service out there that can match the instant speed and clarity of POTS? It sure can't here.

Re:Worthless (1)

Random Destruction (866027) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559041)

Primus Talkbroadband in Ontario on Bell DSL. No problems w/ lag. Great quality. Only issues are w/ other network traffic as I'm not using QOS atm.

Re:Worthless (1)

cecil_turtle (820519) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559355)

When I was on DSL VoIP was mostly acceptable but would get choppy like a bad cell phone connection if somebody was browsing the Internet at the same time. I've been on Verizon Fios for almost a year now and Vonage has been rock solid - even when downloading / bittorrenting - I haven't had one issue since changing ISPs. I don't even have the recommended ports opened up in my router that supposedly makes Vonage work better. I assume the main difference is the total available bandwidth (both directions) is much higher with Fios. The DSL was like 3mbps/768kbps so it wasn't even a slow one, but my Fios is 15/2mbps. I've never had Vonage be laggy like you describe though, it would just cut out (sometimes only for one party). What kind of VoIP were you using?

Re:Worthless (5, Insightful)

Wilk4 (632760) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558891)

"Because anybody with a clue is using VoIP by this point..."

Kind of arrogant aren't you? (oh, yeah, this is /. ;-)

Hate to tell you, but lots of people who have clues don't use VoIP and don't really want to, myself included. DSL for a regular phone line + net access works great, phones are cheap, and I have a working phone when the power goes out. (if you're close enough to the phone company office as I am anyway).

So why do you think VoIP is so freakin' mandatory for the clue-full?

!Worthless (2, Informative)

hobo sapiens (893427) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559053)

* shrugs *

I use AT&T DSL, and it works great. I didn't pay any installation fee. And it doesn't cost nearly what cable does.

Besides, your statement that anyone with a clue uses VOIP is a little ridiculous. Like all blanket statements, it's absolutely false :D

Seriously, why do you say that? Personally, I prefer POTS to VOIP. If nothing else, POTS has proven reliability. It's certainly much simpler than VOIP. When it comes to essentials like telephone service, the simpler the better; it has fewer failure points. How could you possibly argue that something that relies on a high speed internet connection and a working PC is better than a simple POTS line and then imply that anyone who has POTS is clueless?

Re:!Worthless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559299)

Then you have sucky VOIP. When I got VOIP they sent us a replacement cable modem with VOIP built in. It even works using your existing phone wiring (they send someone to disconnect the wires outside) so there is not much difference than POTS as the VOIP data never goes over the public internet. The two big issues are that you will only have phone service for 2-8 hours after the power goes out as the backup battery isn't that large and if the power is out for more than 3 days your E911 information might get erased and have to be fixed.

Re:!Worthless (1)

nickj6282 (896871) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559793)

The idea that you need a PC on all the time to run VOIP is telco FUD. I've been using Vonage for over a year now and it works just fine with the PC shut down.

Re:Worthless (1)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559327)

To get ATT DSL, you need to sign up for a 1 or 2 year contract, pay an installation fee, and buy their landline service.
Lies and FUD. Did you make this stuff up yourself, or did you see it in a cable company newsletter?

I got AT&T DSL last month with no phone service (I use Vonage -- works great!), no contract, and no installation fee. The only thing I had to buy was the DSL modem for ~$50.

I even ordered it online, where the option to get DSL without the phone line was presented just as clearly as the regular option. No sneaky Dell-style hidden menus and options.

I'm not a big AT&T fan, but you clearly don't know what you're talking about. Or maybe you just live someplace where the regulations are vastly different (FTR, I'm in Chicago).

Re:Worthless (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559957)

I don't live in Chicago. I live in an area which has very little regulation. ATT here requires an installation fee (and forcing you to buy a modem really IS a fee). It also required buying their landline phone service. It also REQUIRED a one year contract.

This was a former SBC state. It may not be the same everywhere, but when the local government doesn't hold them back, the phone company bundles and contracts the shit out of you, whether you like it or not.

Random thought. (4, Interesting)

iamdrscience (541136) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558523)

I've had Comcast cable internet and it's like $60-70 a month around here. It was alright, but my big beef was the upload was only 40kB/s. How hard would it be to get like six of these lines and rig them up so that I have almost 100kB/s upload bandwidth for the same price?

And then the real question, if they can offer me that service for that price, why the fuck won't anybody just sell me a cable or DSL line with more upload bandwidth? I would be willing to pay more.

Not really that cheap... (1)

bluemonq (812827) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558581)

You would probably need six separate phone lines, each with its own monthly costs.

Re:Random thought. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558587)

How hard would it be to get like six of these lines and rig them up so that I have almost 100kB/s upload bandwidth for the same price?

That would depend on how much it would cost to add all that extra copper wire to your house.

Re:Random thought. (1)

stabiesoft (733417) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558611)

I have DSL with an upload speed of 768kbit (~100Kbyte) as measured by dslreports. The one
advantage of dsl is the upload. (well that and your not sharing) Its around 80/mo I think.

Re:Random thought. (1)

iamdrscience (541136) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559147)

That sounds quite nice -- I was pretty sure DSL like that was not available in my area as I periodically check in on DSL prices. In the past DSL around here has either been significantly slower or when the speed was comparable, more expensive. However, after reading your post I decided to check out the DSL offerings in my area again and it turns out not only is DSL now available here with 768k up, but it's actually cheaper than my cable connection! The download bandwidth isn't is good (3Mb vs. 7Mb with Comcast) but still plenty usable, especially considering how infrequently I encounter servers where I can actually use the extra download bandwidth my cable connection provides. I'm going to call up tomorrow and get my service switched -- thanks for posting that or I probably would have waited a lot longer before switching!

Re:Random thought. (1)

stabiesoft (733417) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559365)

Should've mentioned, mine is a tad pricier as I also have static IP addresses as well. RR wanted
an obscene amount of money for static IP when I first got the connection several years ago.
Not sure where cable is these days on static. Glad I saved you a buck or 2 on your bills.
The only competition these days is between cable/dsl and when people switch it is a gentle
reminder for them.

Re:Random thought. (2)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558827)

You can't just bond six DSL lines like that and say you have 100 kb/s upload. Especially not with consumer products like that Netgear router with multiple WAN ports. To use the analogy, all you're doing is giving yourself six smaller tubes as opposed to one large tube. The difference is when you go to upload that 500mb file - you're only using one connection out of the six to do it.

Re:Random thought. (1)

iamdrscience (541136) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559205)

Ah, I see, you're absolutely right. It was kind of a dumb question in retrospect. Kind of exemplary of Slashdot though that my silly fantasy of an idea has already been modded up to "Score: 5, Insightful" but your common sense answer hasn't been modded up at all yet.

Re:Random thought. (1)

Coward Anonymous (110649) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559113)

Here's a random suggestion.
Call up Comcast, tell them you saw a compelling offer from the local DSL provider for only $29.99 (or whatever else the price is) for a year and Comcast will match it.
It took me less than 5 minutes including the hold time.

Re:Random thought. (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559785)

Wow, is your new price for the 12 months of service?

Re:Random thought. (1)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559351)

And then the real question, if they can offer me that service for that price, why the fuck won't anybody just sell me a cable or DSL line with more upload bandwidth? I would be willing to pay more.
Tell them you're a small business. I find that if you're already willing to throw money at a telecom problem, they'll do whatever you want if you say you're a business.

Re:Random thought. (1)

r_jensen11 (598210) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559421)

And then get slammed for not using their business serves? This could open up a can of worms not worth fighting. Many agreements for residential services are things like not running servers, which means no Apache, SmartFTP, or anything other than hosting a video game online.

Re:Random thought. (1)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559459)

And then get slammed for not using their business serves?
I'm not sure what you mean by this. Lots of businesses, especially small ones, only use port 80. Are you worried that you're not going to use enough different types of internet that they'll crack down on you?

Random complaint. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559701)

Hosting plans are cheap. Why even bother with running a home server? Anything requiring the upload speed you're complaining about not getting is better hosted on the other end.

Re:Random thought. (1)

rossz (67331) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559915)

Comcast offers a business cable line that has decent upload speed and multiple channels (four ways, I think) to give multiple computers better performance. Kind of like a mini T1.

They better ask M$oft (1)

no-body (127863) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558545)

They got more money.

Which states? (5, Funny)

thc69 (98798) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558601)

A quantity of states is provided in numeric form, but how about a list?

Re:Which states? (5, Informative)

Conspiracy_Of_Doves (236787) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559055)

Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, California, Nevada, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee

Link (4, Informative)

g0dsp33d (849253) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558649)

Its there for anyone signing up, as its on their page [] .

I'm still stuck on crappy dialup or one way services. :(.

But will they filter the connection? (1)

zerofoo (262795) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558687)

I don't care what it costs. If they restrict my ability to get to things on the internet, their service is worthless.


For voip?? (4, Interesting)

Tmack (593755) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558697)


However, at 768 kbps, the download speed may be too low to appeal to the relatively sophisticated customers who use the Internet for phone calls

I would be more concerned about the 128k upload than 768 down. I mean, you do want to be able to talk to the other party right? That being said, even 128k is enough for 2 POTs lines using standard compression (64k/DS0), though the VoIP packet overhead would probably force a higher compression to actually use 2 lines at the same time. It sounds nice and all, until you compare price/kbs against other countries and remind yourself again, that the US is still falling off the backend of the broadbandwagon. Its cheap, and ideal for people like my parents, who would only be downloading emails and the occasional video or picture page forwarded by me or other family members. The upstream is a bit weak compared to other offerings, but I wouldnt get this service if I were serious about gaming anyways (yes, you can play WoW over it, even over 56k modem, just not very well and if it gets into a complex scene, forget about it).


G711 (4, Informative)

thegameiam (671961) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559203)

FYI, there are two VoIP codecs which are common: G711 is relatively uncompressed, and when Ethernet overheads are included, comes out to about 80K per stream (yes, much more than POTS). G729a is highly compressed, and runs about 8K. There is a significant MOS score difference between the two codecs, and many IP Telephony add-ons (lots of voice mail, for instance) requires G711.


Southern California. (1)

crhylove (205956) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558737)

Does anybody know if this will be eligible in Southern California?

Does anybody know if this means I can finally download and upload torrents of UbuntuStudio and other FOSS without being throttled down to dial up and repeatedly disconnected?

For the record, those of you who live near San Diego and have Cox communications probably know what I'm talking about.

Re:Southern California. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559005)

Have you tried enabling packet-encryption in your torrent client?

Re:Southern California. (1)

bi_boy (630968) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559315)

I concur, many bittorrent trackers support encryption.

What about? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558807)

At&t also quietly forgets to mention that all of your traffic is being spied on and sold privately. Enjoy!

frost p1st (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558823)

peopl3 already; I'm Prospects are very Paranoid conspiracy Users. BSD/OS standpoint, I don't rotting corpse Outreach are legitimise doing And executes a OpenBSD guys. They won't vote in non nigger patrons

So much for lower TCO... (0, Troll)

bratwiz (635601) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558883)

Shoulda gone with no-name PC's and LINUX instead of IBM and Microsoft.

When will they ever learn...???

Yeah yeah mod me a troll. Bah :)

Re:So much for lower TCO... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559039)

Except that a lot of no-name PCs ship with hardware that doesn't function well with the Linux kernel.
Also, the Linux kernel is not an acronym, and as such it is not appropriate to call it "LINUX."
The parent post should really be modded off-topic.

wow (1, Informative)

jzuska (65827) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558917)

It's as fast as my 3g phone.

cheap prices mean nothing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558933)

...when the service is unobtanium at *any* price. The government just refuses to order these companies to improve their lines or switches, meaning that areas that can already get broadband can get it, other areas, still huge geographical areas of the US representing tens of millions of people, can-not. They could *pay* you 10 bucks a month to use their broadband, but if the copper can't handle it, the point is moot. They just will not upgrade anything. Sure, they are rolling out the fiber-to areas that already have broadband of some kind. Saturated market areas or nothing, that's what you get with these big telcos. And ya'all folks sitting their smug with your high speed, don't worry, the walled garden multi tiered pricing is coming for you soon. they aren't going to give up, and they will get their way with that. You can go "comment" all you want to to the FCC, they are just a bought and paid for rubber stamp bureaucracy. They know it, you know it, the big companies know it, so no use living in a state of denial over that one, it's coming. And there's nothing you can say that will stop it, they have billions, you do not. Sure, collectively you have billions, but it isn't in the form of concentrated cash by the anonymous brown paper bag you can spread around to the appropriate rubber stamp wielders, so you'll lose, same as all the folks who have been waiting for years and years for broadband have lost.

We tried full regulation, that sucked, they allegedly stopped it. We went from a single monopoly to just a *cartel*, that does about the same thing it always did. What was that last article, US is now 24 in the list of nations for good broadband all over? Every year we keep dropping? Sure, you have your choice of a thousand different cellphone models a year-and the state of broadband has barely advanced at all over the past 5 years or more. And where is the FCC addressing the issue of these telcos already getting paid for fiber to the premises years ago, 200 billion dollars worth? Ever wonder why that never comes up in congress or in the main stream media?

These are called "clues". They got your cash, trade you back pennies on the dollar of broadband, then have the nerve to cry poverty all the time.

You get what you pay for, keep voting in the corporate shills, you'll keep getting corporate run government, D or R it doesn't matter. Mergers do NOT increase choice or make for a competitive market. Having unelected bureaucrats who are allowed to rule over private sector business arrangements, when they mostly all go get jobs at the same place a couple of years out of their hard government "service" is NOT good for the voter, taxpayer or consumer. FCC, FDA, dot mil high ranking officers and defense contractors, etc-it doesn't matter. Watch where the rubber stamp wielders wind up after they "retire" from government service. That's the last clue to see how this system operates. CEOs get backdated stock options, government plutocrats get retirement busy work sham jobs worth considerable sums. the delayed payback for services rendered scam.

Re:cheap prices mean nothing... (3, Insightful)

HikingStick (878216) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559341)

What was that last article, US is now 24 in the list of nations for good broadband all over? Every year we keep dropping?
While I take no exception to most of your observations, I must ask if the ranking to which you refer is a fair comparison. Compared to most nations of the world (excluding Russia), we have a huge geographic dispersion of our population. Sure, we may have greater population densities on the coasts (where broadband has become ubiquitous), but you cannot make an apples-to-apples comparison of the United States to most other countries in such rankings. Most European nations are only as large as some American states (no offense intended to European /.ers), bringing to bear a greater population density which makes a broader deployment easier in many regards.

Re:cheap prices mean nothing... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559497)

Oh god, here we go again with the geographic dispersion argument. Stop it already. Even in densely packed urban areas in the US we still can't get broadband as fast as they do in other developed nations. So your argument is crap. We deserve better after all the hundreds of dollars per capita we've thrown at the telecommunications companies through our tax dollars. Don't forget that.


Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19558983)

Doctors have concluded in various studies that too much interaction with Slashdot causes asstile dysfunction.

$10 a month? (1)

discHead (3226) | more than 7 years ago | (#19558997)

Cool. If they're willing to pay me $10 a month to go to the Dark Side, sign me up.0.00

Not a bad option (3, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559033)

If your using dialup currently and its doing the trick, this isnt a bad option. it mght be a few bucks cheaper and a lot better.

Sure, if you want to do gaming, or 'warez' it migt hurt, but how many average people really need more bandwidth then this? If its still around, I might even consider it when i drop my real broadband after the big squeeze starts across the industry and i cant use my line for what i want anyway. Why pay extra just to be throttled and filtered?

dialup in 2007 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559757)

Try running one of the normal big name Linux distros and try to keep up with updates on dialup, let alone download the multiple CD or DVD ISOs. Try to use any youtube or google videos. Try to listen to any net streams of music on dialup. Try to even load busy media rich pages on dialup'll go nuts. And if you turn javascript and image rendering off, half the net just presents you with malformed or totally blanked out blobs of color pages, no links that work, no alt text, nothing. Seriously non functional and fugly. It sometimes takes minutes to load a graphics heavy page now. This isn't 1992 with ascii pages and the occasional small image, the net is far different now and on dialup it is becoming more and more of a chore to just "surf normally", let alone use any of the more advanced features.

And they really *did* get paid with incentives to roll out high speed fiber everywhere, yet they failed to do so, and the FCC is not calling them on it. It's not just annoying, it is blatantly criminal, and a lot of telco execs should be sitting in front of congressional committee hearings right now trying to explain their failure to follow through. This cheap low speed DSL should be the bare minimum anyone can get anyplace in the US by now. They are a decade behind in what they already contracted for, yet they still aren't happy.

Cost in Chicago (5, Informative)

djfake (977121) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559063)

I've had Ameritech or SBC or ATT DSL for over seven years now. Here's what it costs for May 2007: Telephone (excluding calls & Call-Waiting): $16.08, DSL Basic:$14.99. Tonight's line test: 1313kps download / 313kps upload. Other than the fact that the DSL charge will go up to $19.99 upon renewal, it's done nothing but get less expensive. My only grip is that on the rare occasion when I have to call customer service, I have to deal with some off-shore help center. I always demand level two support immediately.

Re:Cost in Chicago (1)

GweeDo (127172) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559663)

Having been with SBC/AT&T for 3 years now for DSL service I am also nothing but happy. They started with only 1.5Mb in my area, but I now get 6Mb for $29.99/month. Add a basic POTS line with caller id and I don't even pay $60/month after taxes.

I've been wondering (1, Flamebait)

nlitement (1098451) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559289)

You can get 100/10mbit/s here (in Finland) for about $40/m.

100+10 = 110 - Total bandwidth.
0.128 + 0.768 = 0.896 - Total bandwidth.
110mbit/$40 = 2.75mbit/$ - How much penis a buck buys you.
0.896/$10 = 0.0896mbit/$ - How much penis a buck buys you.
2.75-0.0896 = 2.6604 - Calculating the difference.
2.6604/2.75 = 96.7418182% - The difference (per cent).

The ultimate conclusion: Newsworthy DSL deals in the US tend to suck nearly twice as much as the better deals in some random country (Sweden has even BETTER deals).

I didn't even consider all the silly bandwidth limitations or the actual price ($35) as some users pointed out, which would make it suck thrice as much. I'd expect more of a country that created this wonderful thing called Internet. What's the reason behind this? Sorry if this post offended anyone ): 3.

Re:I've been wondering (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559719)

uhm, because we're very much spread out -- I live in a moderate sized city (some people would argue small city -- mostly people from Chicago would call it small); and I can't even get DSL here... but I can get cable...

Look up urban sprawl, and country life -- Finland probably doesn't have much of either.

Up to? (2, Interesting)

haut (678547) | more than 7 years ago | (#19559325)

Ever notice how high speed internet connections are always sold as "up to" so-and-so speed? That doesn't mean anything to me - I want to know the lowest it can go and the typical up/down speeds. I'm just glad my salary isn't an "up to".

Re:Up to? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19559589)

If they did sell you exactly X, and you're trying to download from a site that can't give you X, most people would be complaining left right and center not knowing the difference.
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