Telstra aims throttling at its hungriest customers

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Telstra aims throttling at its hungriest customers

Targets big bills and alleged filesharers.

Telstra has revealed a two-prong network traffic management strategy that will see big data users on its networks throttled.

The telco announced late last night a system to throttle smartphone users' data connections once their monthly quota was exhausted.

The system – to be launched by the end of the year – was targeted at users who ran up unexpectedly high data bills on their devices, experiencing 'bill shock'.

Throttled mobile customers would be given the option to buy data top-ups from their handsets.

Chief financial officer John Stanhope said in a statement that an existing system that alerted users when they were at 80 percent and 100 percent of their mobile data allowances would be upgraded "so SMS alert messages are sent to customers in near real-time."

Full throttle

The smartphone strategy appeared to be only one part of a wider push to manage traffic flowing across the carrier's network.

Telstra also spent time talking up traffic management at TM Forum's Management World conference in Ireland this week.

In particular, executive director Michael Lawrey made waves early yesterday when plans emerged to throttle or cut off "downloaders of illegal content", whom he reportedly blamed for network congestion.

Reports that emerged from Lawrey's speech in Dublin did not specify whether he was speaking about Telstra's wired or wireless network.

But RCR Wireless News quoted Lawrey as saying that Telstra would soon take action against customers thought to be abusing the carrier's fair use policies.

"We probably haven't even used our fair use small print yet. But we will," Lawrey said.

Lawrey was reported to have said that if the carrier's proposed system "cut out 80 percent of the non-value adding traffic, good".

About 80 percent of Telstra's data was chewed up by high bandwidth users, it was reported.

"I'd rather not have those 80 percent as customers, I'd rather someone else had them as customers," Lawrey said.

Lawrey was quoted by Light Reading as promoting the use of traffic management as a platform for the launch of tiered data services such as IPTV.

A Telstra spokesman was contacted for comment but had not responded at the time of publication.

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