Thursday, 11 February 2016

That internet

Our new home is on a campus - lovely, but the process of arranging internet (a fuss in the UK at the best of times) has stretched into a two month drudge. For all of January I eked out my monthly mobile data allowance, regularly sneaking into coffee shops to scrump for WiFi, in anticipation of hitting the 2GB cap and incurring godawful fees. The cap came and went and I clenched my buttocks in anticipation of the bill.

Instead, I got an SMS from Vodafone.
'You are now halfway through your unlimited data test drive.'

Oh yeah. I'd renewed my mobile contract and Vodafone were doing that whole, drug dealer, first month is free thing. There were just two weeks left before Plusnet attached the internet anyway, but I felt it behoved me to abuse this data to the fullest extent.

Obviously the 4G went on and has stayed on since. I changed my various apps to 'download over 4G', and doubled the size of my downloaded Amazon music library, audible book collection, and backed up all my photos to Google. This only consumed a few gigs of data. I needed to do more.

I had received for Christmas a boxed copy of the game Metal Gear Solid V. I knew from various internet sources that the disc in the case contained only an autoloader for the Steam videogame store, a download code, and no actual data, so this case remained in its shrink wrap - a meaningless fetish representing the death throws of highstreet retail.

Metal Gear Solid V is a 27GB file, and I downloaded that sucker through a mobile phone tether. It took less than three hours. At 50%, when I realised that it was working, a mad grin overtook my face.

My Steam library contains hundreds of games, most I've never played, almost all I've never downloaded, purchased in bulk in bundle deals, steam sales, received as free promos. My secondary hard drive has two terabytes of room left on it.

The question is, what will run out first? The hard drive? The time until Plusnet connects us? The phones's physical integrity? Vodafone's 'unlimited' data?

Someone's going to blink... But I'm just sleep deprived enough that it won't be me.

1 comment:

  1. I remember being at the launch of DVDs. Toshiba had some futurologists in to give a presentation. They predicted that in the future download speeds would be so high that we would buy software as a download and not bother with the discs. At the time I did not even own a mobile phone so we are talking about 1997 or there abouts. I did not believe them - mad futorologists - pah!