French telcos consider capping ‘unlimited’ web access

22 Aug 2011

The leading internet service providers in France – SFR, France Telecom (Orange) and Bouygues Telecom – are considering plans to impose download caps on ‘unlimited’ service plans, making particularly heavy web users pay a surcharge. The trio argue the measure would make it easier for them to better manage internet traffic flows but consumer rights group UFC-Que Choisir has been quick to condemn the idea, calling it ‘unacceptable’ and ‘unjustified’, while national regulator Arcep said the plan was ‘bizarre’. Other leading altnets such as Iliad (Free) and Numericable have reportedly distanced themselves from the plan. Nothing concrete has as yet been decided although a number of high volume users could see their service speed reduced or access blocked altogether for the rest of the billed month if they exceed the telcos’ idea of overusing their service.

France, Bouygues Telecom, Orange Group, SFR