tripleevenfall writes with this excerpt from SFGate: "The days of watching movies on the cheap via the Web may soon be over. Time Warner Cable and U.S. pay-TV companies are on the verge of instituting new fees on Web-access customers who use the most data. ... U.S. providers have weighed usage-based plans for years as a way to squeeze more profit from Web access, and to counter slowing growth and rising program costs in the TV business. While customer complaints hampered earlier attempts, pay-TV companies are testing usage caps and price structures that point to the advent of permanent fees. ... Cable's best option is to find ways to profit from the online shift, said [analyst Craig Moffett]. If the companies were to lose all of their video customers, the revenue decline would be more than offset by lower programming fees and set-top box spending. 'In the end, it will be the best thing that ever happened to the cable industry,' Moffett said."
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