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Unlimited Bandwidth - a modern day fairy tale.

Some web hosting companies offer web hosting plans with the "unlimited bandwidth", "unmetered bandwidth",or "unlimited disk space" as a sales feature to tempt unsuspecting consumers.

Unfortunately, bandwidth is not free. And there is no such thing as an unlimited size disk drive.

If there were, large companies like Google and Yahoo could run their businesses on a $20 "unlimited" hosting account, instead of investing millions of dollars a year on their infrastructure.

Bandwidth is a measure of the amount of data that people download from your website. This includes web pages, graphics and text. If you have a lot of visitors who look at or download a lot of large files from your website, you will need a lot of bandwidth.

A web hosting account includes a certain amount of bandwidth. If you exceed this amount you have to pay an additional fee for each megabyte of data that your visitors download.

In Australia, Telstra charges up to 25 cents per megabyte ( $250 per gigabyte) of bandwidth. This can become very expensive, as shown in our Hosting comparison chart.

So an unlimited bandwidth hosting account would be VERY attractive for owners of site using a lot of bandwidth, who could potentially save thousands of dollars a month.

If fact, you might ask why sites like Yahoo and Google would spend millions of dollars on bandwidth if they could get unlimited amounts for a few dollars a month!

The Fundamental Flaw

You've probably noticed the fundamental flaw.
1. Bandwidth is not supplied free - Hosting Companies pay for it.
2. These Hosts promise an unlimited amount - Free.

Something doesn't add up. Turns out that it's a smoke and mirrors marketing trick.

The only reason that these people offer unlimited bandwidth is that they know that most sites will only use a small amount, and never approach their definition of "excessive", whatever that may be. That's why it's offered - they're betting that their clients won't use too much.

Human nature being what it is, people will perceive that "unlimited" will be better than the defined amounts offered by more reputable hosting companies. Until their website stops working because it has been shut down, because unlimited is not really unlimited.

A Special Meaning of "Unlimited"

Here's the catch. If you have an account with an unlimited bandwidth host and try to use it, you will discover that they have a very special definition of "Unlimited".

Have a look in their "Terms and Conditions" document, and you'll find that there will be a limitation clause. Here's one from a local company who loudly offers "unlimited bandwidth"

4(b) XXX XXXX reserves the right to immediately suspend or terminate SERVICES to a Subscriber generating excessive bandwidth to the server(s)

So -you buy unlimited bandwidth, but if you use more than a certain amount your account is shut down. And what's more, they don't tell you what "excessive" means. And they'll shut you down if you exceed it.

Looks pretty misleading to us. And similar conditions exist on every "unlimited" site that we have checked.

Another thing to be careful of is companies offering "Lifetime" web hosting for a very cheap price.

The "lifetime" they refer to is not YOUR lifetime, but that of their business - which is generally short.


WebAngel Pty. Ltd. (ABN 50 098 071 124)
GPO Box 370 Hobart, Tasmania Australia 7001.
Phone (03) 6243 1334 email: sales@webangel.com.au

Internet: WebAngel.com.au

Blog: EricGraudins.com

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