To Charge or Not to Charge?

You know you have heavy bandwidth users on your network, and you know these users are responsible for degrading performance for all of your subscribers. As more and more high-definition Over The Top (OTT) and peer-to-peer (p2p) video services are used, your top-talkers are taking up more and more of your network’s resources. As a provider, you want to charge back those heavy users. You know that monetizing heavy over-usage of the network is a way for you to recoup the investments you make in order to keep ahead of the bandwidth demand you require.

But where do you draw the line?

You need a tool to actively track the usage per subscriber and per plan. Once you have this data, you need to play “what-if” scenarios with bandwidth quotas. For example: should you set a given quota at 200 gigabytes or 300 gigabytes? If you choose 200, how much additional revenue do you generate, and how many of your subscribers would be affected? Can you increase the costs for the heavy user?

The tool you select must provide the business intelligence you need to make the decisions you believe are right for your markets and your subscribers. This tool should give you as much information as possible to allow you to run your network efficiently, as well as monetize your investments.

Asking subscribers for more money is always a delicate proposal, and you want to gauge how many of those subscribers you may offend, and maybe even lose. To monetize your top-talkers without risking churn, you need a tool that can put the decision back into the hands of the subscriber. Your tool needs to automatically notify the heavy users on your network when they are approaching their bandwidth limits, and prompt the user with options for a paid bandwidth increase, a service level agreement upgrade, or a temporary speed-reduction agreement. By having a tool that automatically monetizes your subscribers, without making them feel affronted or out-of-control, you’ll boost your subscribers’ Quality of Experience (QoE) while increasing return on investment.

Making decisions with business intelligence and automating the monetization of heavy-users is a solution to an increasingly common provider challenge. As more OTT content, including 4k video streaming, continues to make its way onto the Internet, the time to find that solution is now.