Britt: Usage-Based Pricing Inevitable

Sees changes coming to broadband marketing

Just days after announcing a potentially controversial plan to introduce usage-based pricing to its broadband product, Time Warner Cable chairman and CEO Glenn Britt said that the response from customers so far as been favorable, adding that he sees the day coming soon when broadband marketing is no longer centered on promotional pricing.

Time Warner launched a usage-based tier in sourthern Texas earlier this week that allowed lighter broadband users to shave as much as $5 per month off their bills if they agree to certain usage limits. The offering differs from the cable giant's attempts in the spring of 2009 to impose consumption-based billing, which was met with a huge outcry from consumer groups and politicians. Time Warner Cable scuttled those plans in April that year.

At the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom conference in San Francisco Thursday, Britt said that usage-based pricing is inevitable, and if he could turn back the clock to the initial launch of broadband service several years ago, he would include some kind of consumption component. But he added the cable giant's current approach is easier to swallow.

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