Yes those ISPs do exist in Europe but are very very few. The reason they put said limits on is because they dont have the "hole" out that is needed to supply unlimited downloads. Now saying that, 50GB is enough for most and 100GB should cover all but the big downloaders. Problem comes when you start getting video on demand in HD (or even normal), then those 100 GB poof very fast. Therefore internet based TV is the first causality of such plans. In the US, Comcast has kicked users off because of "overuse" of Youtube..Here in Australia we have plans that are based on data, you buy... a 50GB plan or a 100GB plan, which lasts for a month. If you go over that limit you're shaped to 56k.
Actually it does, IF that free market is protected by regulation that promotes competition. In Europe we have that. I live in Spain, which by European standards is a 3rd world country when it comes to internet and according to the OECD about the same as the US (on average speeds). I have access to easily 5+ different ISPs with the 3 big ones giving free telephone and internet TV for 40 euros a month. If I just want a 3mb line (the smallest one out there) then I pay around 15 to 20 euros. In Denmark I can get it even cheaper and much more bandwidth and all of them are pretty much unlimited downloads. Add to that at least 5 wireless providers, plus 5+ 3G providers in the area then I have access to 15+ ISP providers ranging from 1 Mbit to 10+ mbit.. and there are more come to think of it. I know there are at least 3 ISP companies (local) that focus on the expat market, and then a few more on top of that..so 20+ at least.You'd think the free market would supply some of the overwhelming demand for unlimited usage plans, but it doesn't.
I know fully what you mean.. it was how it was in Europe (and is in some places still) 20 years ago.I can only name one in my entire city, and they have a virtual monopoly so they charge insane prices (and only on 24mbit speeds). Trust me. It's not fun at all.
It is because the telecommunications companies dont want to invest in infrastructure but instead pay out massive bonuses and dividend to their shareholders. And you can add Sweden to your list as well as Denmark. This is the main problem with situations like the American... zero competition to push companies to compete on quality and quantity... why boost your network if you have a geographical monopoly? The best way to fix such a situation is do what the Europeans did.. force the infrastructure open.. that anyone can rent in (at reasonable prices) on the backbone of the monopoly company and that the monopoly company has the legal right to expand and maintain the network for say 50 years as long as it gives access to other companies. Soon you will see new companies entering the market.. like it or not, the copper/fiberoptic cables in the ground is a huge entrance barrier in the telecommunications market.Internet infrastructure is extremely beneficial to business, Japan and South Korea both benefit enormously from their 150mbit+ general speeds. Internet speeds is another thing the US has fallen way behind in relative to the rest of the world.