An Unwelcome Surprise!
A couple of months ago we had signed up for Verizon's National Access/Broadband Access Internet service, in order to have a backup in case anything went wrong with our Hughes Net satellite Internet setup. Running a radio network as we do, we need to be able to access our computers and upload audio files, so we must have a constant Internet connection.
The USB-720 cellular modem that came with our subscription is a palm-sized USB device that plugs in and works wherever there's a digital cell signal-so no need to set up and aim a bulky tripod-mounted dish all the time when we are on the road. It's so convenient, in fact, that for the month or so after getting it, we didn't even bother to set up the dish; we just used the USB-720 to access the Internet through Verizon.
But shortly after the beginning of the year, we got a shocking e-mail from Verizon:
You see, there's a catch to almost all Internet services: the large type may say "UNLIMITED ACCESS!", but buried in the small type is a clause that says if you use too much, they'll penalize you.
If you exceed 5 GB (5,120 MB) in a given monthly billing period, they will cheerfully keep on feeding you data at high speed... but they'll charge you 49 cents for every megabyte above their limit. As you can see from the bill we got, that can add up fast! In our case, it added up to a whopping $1,405.32 in excess data charges.