Dumb and Dumber

Time for a tech rant!

Introducing dumb and dumber – Telecom and Microsoft.

First up, Telecom. I can’t understand why they are still advertising their “Go Large” plan as unlimited internet usage with no data caps. If it’s unlimited, why does Telecom limit your usage at peak times through their traffic management policy (aka throttle) and allow you to only download 700MB between 4pm and midnight before contacting you with advice on how to reduce your usage? The Consumers Institute even complained to the Commerce Commission, yet Telecom still continue with the misleading ad campaigns.

Still, this headline – “Telecom ordered to open up lines” – from stuff.co.nz should make a few people happy. The government has just passed a bill forcing Telecom to unbundle the local loop which should (in time) lead to actual better and cheaper broadband in NZ…

And so to dumber, Microsoft and the Zune – their portable music player for the uninitiated. Dumber, because this brand spanking new player doesn’t even work with Microsoft’s own exisiting copy protection scheme “PlaysForSure” which is currently used by online services Rhapsody, Yahoo! Music and Napster. Intstead they’ve introduced a new copy protection scheme which effectively locks out all their existing customers. The Zune even adds copy protection to tracks transferred to another Zune, even if you don’t want it to happen because, say, you created the content and want it distributed freely. Worse, the transferred content can only be played 3 times over 3 days before it is locked down. At least with iTunes I can transfer any music I please onto any number of iPods without further restriction.

My advice? If you’re considering an ISP, support someone other than Telecom. And if you want a portable music player, don’t buy a Zune!

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About Chris
A self confessed geek, meteorologist (aka weather forecaster), father & proud kiwi mainlander living, working & playing in Wellington, New Zealand.

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