Friday, July 29, 2011

Is AT&T considering throttling heavy data users? | Signal Strength - CNET News

Is AT&T considering throttling heavy data users? | Signal Strength - CNET News

AT&T may be looking at new ways to control data hogs on its wireless network.

The company is rumored to be considering throttling super-heavy data users and restricting them to slower speeds in an effort to better manage its network and keep up with demand for mobile data, according to the blog 9to5mac.


The new policy could start the first in October, which is right around the time that Apple is expected to launch its next generation iPhone, the blog said.

AT&T wouldn't be the first wireless operator to employ such tactics. T-Mobile USA, which AT&T is trying to acquire, now slows down network connections for customers who exceeded its bandwidth cap. The company did this instead of charging customers overage fees. And Sprint Nextel's prepaid brand Virgin Mobile USA recently announced it plans to eliminate its unlimited data plans and will instead restrict data speeds when customer exceed more than 2.5GB of data per month.

It's unknown what AT&T's threshold of high-data usage would be. The company already sells wireless data plans for $25 for 2GB of data per month and $45 for 4GB of data. It's likely that customers who pay for a certain tier of service would be throttled if they exceed these usage caps in a month.

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