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Bandwidth Limits

How to select your service with Mercury

Choosing which service to select with Mercury might sound confusing if you are not an IT expert. So, to make things easier and clearer here are some examples of the amount of traffic that typical usage can require.

Example 1 - Light Internet Home user who sends and receives one hundred emails per week and spends twenty hours browsing the Internet per week and 3 hours of skype or voice Telephone calls per week would use around 1 gigabyte a week of traffic therefore our basic service would be recommended.

Example 2 - A typical Internet user who sends and receives two hundred and fifty emails per week, spends forty hours browsing the Internet, ten hours of skype or voice Telephone calls and watches five hours of Youtube video per week and downloads a couple of films and ten songs would use around five gigabytes a week therefore our medium package would be recommended.

Example 3- A heavy Internet user or a family with a number of users who send and receive five hundred emails per week, spend sixty hours on the Internet, twenty hours of skype or voice Telephone calls, watches ten hours of Youtube video per week and downloads ten films and a hundred songs would use around twenty gigabytes a week so our extra large package would be recommended.

Why do you limit the amount of traffic I can use?

It is our intention to provide a fast, reliable service for all of our Internet users.

Unfortunately, a small proportion of users attempt to use a disproportionate amount of the available data traffic. The result is that less than 10% of users consume over 80% of the available traffic. The typical problems are caused when:

* users have the selected the wrong account - for instance using Mercury Small connection for heavy usage when a larger business service would be more suitable.

* make excessive use of P2P (peer-to-peer) file sharing / emule / bittorrent / swapping networks.

Wireless broadband is a 'shared' access service and operates (both technically and commercially) on a contention ratio of either 50:1 or 20:1 (depending on the service you have chosen). High levels of usage by a small number of users risks reduced performance for all users.

To solve this - the options we have are:

Increase Prices

We could increase the price to allow us to allocate more traffic to the service. However, increasing the price would not be a good solution as it would be:

* unfair to the majority of the users as this issue is caused by a small minority of users making excessive demands on the service.

Set Traffic Limits / Quotas

Limits are set at a level which does not affect the vast majority of users but would help ensure fair access for all users. Users making excessive use of the network would either have to:

    * upgrade their account to one suitable to cover their requirements.

    * pay for the excess traffic consumed.

    * have their accounts either restricted, suspended or in severe cases terminated.

As such we concluded that 'overall' setting traffic limits / quotas was the best and fair solution to keep our users happy.

This policy, which we accept will not be popular with the small minority of heavy usage users, is designed to protect the service and performance for the majority of our normal home and business users.

For more details of the current usage limits please see our prices information .

If you have any other questions please contact us .