As an iPhone owner and an O2 customer it always seemed inevitable that sooner rather than later the question of unlimited data use would be one that was tackled by the phone company.
The focus on texts and minutes might have been sensible when the customers were text happy teenagers but the explosion of smart phones with all the lovely web content that they can provide has overshadowed texting by some considerable margin.
But the decision by O2 to scrap unlimited data use has still come as a disappointment because ultimately it means the biggest benefits of being connected are now going to be the most expensive. It is all very well putting up some graphic revealing how many emails and movies you can watch for you 500MB but for most of us it makes using a smart phone in the UK feel exactly like it does when you go abroad, a constant panic about how much data you have used.
I'm not saying that O2 cannot charge because of course it can but the limits it has set do seem to fail to acknowledge where the market is going. With streaming video round the corner and more and more being shared online this puts an artificial cap on the whole thing.
When my contract runs out of course I will be looking for the best data deal but anyone who tells me to be happy with 500MB clearly fails to understand where things are going.
This was first published in June 2010