AT&T established a policy of throttling the data speeds for their top 5% of users by region based on an unclear policy which had people complaining about having their data speeds being throttled by the company. The reports had the data speeds being crippled by AT&T to the extreme end of the spectrum rather than slowing them down only slightly. As is being reported by a number of sources, AT&T has revised their data throttling policy today to make it more reasonable than what they have been doing for the past month. This whole thing was impacting those individuals who had unlimited data plans and was an attempt by AT&T to force them off of the unlimited data plans. The amount of negative press on this has forced AT&T to make a change.
The change makes the whole program far more reasonable for those who have unlimited data plans. Prior to this change, AT&T would start to radically reduce the data speeds when a customer would hit 2 GB of data usage in a month, which in general made no sense what so ever. In a number of cases, AT&T did this before they even got to the 2 GB level in a given month. Given that they have a 3 GB per month plan for the same price as those grandfathered, why would they be literally killing the connection speed for unlimited data usage at 2 GB? This was what was being complained about and AT&T could not offer up an explanation that was acceptable or made any sense.
AT&T also received a lot of bad press because of a small claims case over data throttling which they lost and was widely reported. That loss was looking to have a big impact on AT&T as others sought relief from the data throttling by AT&T at 2 GB or less which resulted in extremely reduced data speeds. In what seems to be an admission they were going to be seeing lots of these kinds of cases, AT&T has issued an updated policy which makes a lot more sense.
Our unlimited plan customers have told us they want more clarity around how the program works and what they can expect. Here’s what customers need to know:
* Customers with a 3G or 4G smartphone – who also still have our unlimited data plan – will see speeds reduced if they use 3GB (gigabytes) of data or more in a billing cycle. Speeds will return to normal at the start of the next billing cycle. For context, less than 5 percent of smartphone customers use more than 3GB per month.
* For customers with a 4G LTE smartphone – who also still have our unlimited data plan – data speeds will be reduced if usage is 5GB (gigabytes) or more in a billing cycle. Speeds will return to normal at the start of the next billing cycle.
Customers will get a text message from us before experiencing a change in speed.