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robzy

Why don't we see more two-tier data pricing in Australia?

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I was originally writing the following post on how data charges in Australia are so expensive...

 

Amazon EC2/S3/etc charge 10c/GB in order to send to or receive from me in Australia. Optus charge less than 15c/GB for me to sent to or recieve from anywhere in the world.

 

This means that sending a file to, or receiving a file from, Amazon EC2/S3/etc costs me roughly 25c/GB. It's much the same for various international providers, bandwidth comes in spades.

 

This is in vast difference to what I've seen of Australian providers. This company was recently linked in Tech Talk, whereby each GB costs 35c. More

Then I realised that this was likely because that the average trip of Amazon's data is less than the average trip of Mammoth's data, and therefore they could afford to charge less per gigabyte.

 

But that got me wondering, why hasn't the Australian industry adopted a two tier approach? Why isn't national and international data metered differently? Even if two ISPs/etc are not peered, surely national data is cheaper.

 

Rob.

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It could also be that when a company works out what to charge for their product they factor in their overheads, the staff they have to pay (some companies have really expensive staff because they're completely awesome code ninjas - even if they do sit on atomic a fair bit), they then put have to factor in any expected meagre profits, and there you are. All basic business stuff.

 

Don't forget, a small company may not be getting their data charges for the same price as Amazon or Optus.

 

Though your question was really about national and international data being metered differently, and not how Mammoth came about their (very reasonable) data costs :) I don't know the cost of the data at a wholesale level :)

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It could also be that when a company works out what to charge for their product they factor in their overheads, the staff they have to pay (some companies have really expensive staff because they're completely awesome code ninjas - even if they do sit on atomic a fair bit), they then put have to factor in any expected meagre profits, and there you are. All basic business stuff.

I don't nesecarily see how that would factor into into additional data costs, though. Surely there is very little overhead involved with setting my account to say "600GB" instead of "500GB".

 

Don't forget, a small company may not be getting their data charges for the same price as Amazon or Optus.

While it wasn't an extensive search, recently I was looking for an Australian VPS... and all of them offered very little data. If you could find a counter-example, though, that'd be appreciated.

 

Actually, any chance of getting a hold of your employers hardware and network? :P

 

Rob.

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It could also be that when a company works out what to charge for their product they factor in their overheads, the staff they have to pay (some companies have really expensive staff because they're completely awesome code ninjas - even if they do sit on atomic a fair bit), they then put have to factor in any expected meagre profits, and there you are. All basic business stuff.

I don't nesecarily see how that would factor into into additional data costs, though. Surely there is very little overhead involved with setting my account to say "600GB" instead of "500GB".

 

I don't understand what you're getting at here? Surely more data usage implies extra cost?

 

Don't forget, a small company may not be getting their data charges for the same price as Amazon or Optus.

While it wasn't an extensive search, recently I was looking for an Australian VPS... and all of them offered very little data. If you could find a counter-example, though, that'd be appreciated.

 

Actually, any chance of getting a hold of your employers hardware and network? :P

 

Rob.

 

Do you mean physically taking it offsite? :p

 

It says what network and hardware we use right there in the site.

 

http://www.mammothvps.com.au/hosting/virtualization - We use Xen on CentOS as the host platform.

http://www.mammothvps.com.au/hosting/hardware - We use dual quad core Xeon 2.4 with 72GB per machine. Storage via a SAN.

http://www.mammothvps.com.au/hosting/datacentre - Network is via Soul and is 20mbit in and 200mbit out.

 

My blog is hosted on a Silver Plan ($59.95 / month with 1GB RAM and 90GB of data - All employees get a VPS of their choosing with a max ram of 1GB) on a Windows 2008 Server R2 box running Sql Server 2008 R2 and IIS 7.5. Included in the $59.95. I think compared to the competition, it's excellent value. Consider the cost of a similar VPS at http://www.crazydomains.com.au/servers/index.html#windows - $155/month and win 2003. Data is unlimited but with a difference of $96, that's 275GB of data transfer a month at Mammoth.

 

Personally I use my VPS for very mild use, my blog, it hosts my SVN repo, an IRC relay, a few websites for friends etc and I've done a little of 500MB and my billing cycle is about to renew. Mammoth's strategy was about providing cost effective solutions, offering plans from as little as $9.95 a month

Edited by kikz

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I think the complexities of implementing tiered pricing are too high to make this worthwhile. I'm not knowledgeable enough on how many pipes there are going out of this country and who owns them, but I guess what we would end up with is something like local and international phone calls, where local calls is the equivalent of National IP (or to Australia's IP range) and pricing differs depending on where you're going.

 

What we may end up with then is all the data centers being hosted in the cheapest country. While the cheapest for IP traffic would be to have every site replicated in a datacenter in every country, I guess that would cost far too much and the maintenance would suck balls.

 

Basically I can't see how imposing two-tiers, National & International would work. International too broad a location IMO.

 

Also, customers (end consumers like you or the less tech savvy you) wouldn't be able to accurately estimate costs, bandwidth limits would quickly be reached. Internet plans would have to be like phone plans, $200 plan , $100 plan etc. Once you burn through $200 of IP data you get shaped. Problem is you've got no real say in how you quickly you burn through it.

 

IMO keep the one price!

Edited by grazer

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It could also be that when a company works out what to charge for their product they factor in their overheads, the staff they have to pay (some companies have really expensive staff because they're completely awesome code ninjas - even if they do sit on atomic a fair bit), they then put have to factor in any expected meagre profits, and there you are. All basic business stuff.

I don't nesecarily see how that would factor into into additional data costs, though. Surely there is very little overhead involved with setting my account to say "600GB" instead of "500GB".

 

I don't understand what you're getting at here? Surely more data usage implies extra cost?
What I was getting at is that: Overheads shouldn't come into the question of 30c/GB, because simply adding GB to a plan (which surely doesn't come with overhead) equates to 30c/GB.

 

I think the complexities of implementing tiered pricing are too high to make this worthwhile. I'm not knowledgeable enough on how many pipes there are going out of this country and who owns them, but I guess what we would end up with is something like local and international phone calls, where local calls is the equivalent of National IP (or to Australia's IP range) and pricing differs depending on where you're going.

That's exactly what I'm suggesting. At some point in the pathway the data takes to it's destination, someone is paying a different price depending on where it's going. It might be your ISP, or your ISP's ISP, etc. etc. but at some point there will be a company that will be paying more to send it along Link A under the ocean, as opposed to Link B which simply runs next door. What I'm wondering is why these costs are aggregated into an average at some point in the line, before it hits the end consumer.

 

You're likely right in saying it's because it's not cost effective. Because otherwise they would've done it :P And I guess consumer information-overload might also come into it.

 

Basically I can't see how imposing two-tiers, National & International would work. International too broad a location IMO.

And then there's that too. If you're doing two-tiered, then why not charge a plethora of different prices? And how long until Website XYZ won't send you any data because it's too expensive for them... :P

 

Rob.

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