AT&T rolled out its Google Fiber competitor (see article) in the Kansas City, Mo. area (Leawood, Lenexa, Olathe, and Overland Park, Kan. ) for the same price that Google charges – $70 a month.
However, if you would prefer that AT&T not track the web pages you visit, the time you spend at each, the links or ads you see and follow and the search terms you enter — THAT will cost you an extra $29 a month. They call this Big Brother service “AT&T Internet Preferences” and if you would prefer not to be preferenced, plan to fork over another $29 each month.
One would assume that this number is close to the amount of revenue they get from selling that data to advertisers.
Google says that they don’t collect browsing history on Google Fiber customers. Google says that it collects additional data for Google Fiber customers, but that it doesn’t NECESSARILY combine that with data that they collect when you visit all those other Google services like You Tube, Picasa, GMail and many others.
Although AT&T warned that they might pause their fiber rollout to get even with the FCC for their net neutrality ruling, apparently that is not happening just yet since they just announced a list of 100 cities which are new candidates to join Kansas City with gigabit fiber.
This, of course, has nothing to do with the tracking that individual web sites like Amazon or Walmart do – that will continue no matter how much you pay.
So, remember, there is no such thing as a free lunch – even if you pay $70 a month for it. $99 a month is as close as we come to a free lunch. Gotta pay for that fiber some how.