Pricing Data: Past Proposals, Current Plans, and Future Trends
Traditionally, network operators have used simple at-rate broadband data plans for both wired and wireless network access. But today, with the popularity of mobile devices and exponential growth of apps, videos, and clouds, service providers are gradually moving towards more sophisticated pricing schemes, including dynamic pricing. This decade will therefore likely witness a major change in ways in which network resources are managed and the role of economics in allocating these resources. This paper reviews some of the well-known past broadband pricing proposals (both static and dynamic), their current realization in various consumer data plans around the world, and discusses several research challenges and developments.