Sonic.net is launching a new service that could end up challenging larger Internet service providers with a much higher data usage allotment for such a smaller monthly fee.
The California-based ISP is gearing up to roll out its new 1Gbps fiber-to-the-home Internet service that will cost only $69.99 per month. Compare that to Comcast's 105Mbps option that can run anywhere between $100 and $200 per month depending on the bundle you buy. (Or on the lower end of the spectrum for basic, everyday browsing, Time Warner Cable offers a measly 50Mbps for $99.95 on its own.)
Before we all get excited about this more economical prospect, the 1Gbps plan is still in trial mode and will only be launching in Sebastopol, Calif. to only 700 households. However, Engadget speculates that if all goes well, Sonic.net will expand service to neighboring heavily-populated areas in the northern Bay Area as well as San Francisco.
But as great as this deal sounds, is it even necessary to have connection speeds up to 1Gbps per month? For the average home these days, probably not. But as more and more household devices become Internet-enabled (i.e. Smart TVs, etc.) that will require stronger connections for streaming and communicating with other devices on the same network, then such a plan could be eventually offered by larger, nationwide ISPs. But don't expect them to be budget-friendly, at least not at first.
Nevertheless, Ars Technica reports that Sonic.net's CEO Dane Jasper believes "that fast service for a low cost is possible" and after the Sebastopoltrial winds up, the company will have "a complete picture of the economic model."