AT&T Introduces 'Sponsored Data' to Allow Businesses to Cover Cost of Mobile Data Downloads

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    AT&T today announced a new Sponsored Data program to allow its customers to download content or apps over cellular data, with businesses picking up the cost of the data -- that is, downloads won't affect the users' monthly wireless data plan allotment.

    The system, which works similarly to toll-free 800-numbers, was originally rumored nearly two years ago.

    According to AT&T, the service will allow companies to sponsor data use across a number of industries including healthcare, retail, media and entertainment, and financial services, and giving a number of possible use cases in its press release announcing the program:
    For users, the program will be nearly invisible, with post-paid customers receiving automatic access to Sponsored Data when on AT&T's domestic wireless network. Prepaid customers will not be able to use the Sponsored Data program.

    U.S. cellular carriers have been in something of a marketing war in recent months, particularly between T-Mobile and AT&T. Recently, AT&T began a new promotion to offer up to $450 in credits to customers that switch to it from T-Mobile.

    The new sponsored data program, if widely adopted, could reduce user concerns over data usage, particularly after AT&T has moved aggressively to wean customers off of its unlimited data plans.

    Article Link: AT&T Introduces 'Sponsored Data' to Allow Businesses to Cover Cost of Mobile Data Downloads
     
  2. macrumors 68000

    nepalisherpa

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    #2
    If you really care about your customers then come up with better plans first.
     
  3. macrumors 68000

    BJMRamage

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    #3
    I am one of the few (from reading this topic on here a while back) that was interested in this idea.

    I see it mainly for subscription model apps but imagine if when using the Target app, they "bought" your data. or ESPN would "buy" your data because they are selling ads within the app.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
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    #4
    Seems to be that it would simply be easier to just go back to the way it was. Remove the limits. It's obvious the network is going to be used. All the overhead keeping track of bits and bytes just contributes to the point of diminishing returns.

    If they want to charge for something, charge for levels of throttling.
     
  5. macrumors member

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  6. macrumors 68040

    tigres

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    #6
    The more complexity, the more I am turned off.
     
  7. macrumors newbie

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    #7
    This is the first step of the end of net neutrality
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Do you really trust AT&T to get the accounting right?

    I don't know if any business will actually be willing to pay AT&T for sponsored data, but a few questions immediately come to my mind:

    1. Will AT&T be able to account for the sponsored data on an accurate basis, or will they overcharge the sponsor?
    2. How long will it be before someone figures out how to exploit this, using sponsored data for their own purposes?
    3. Do I actually trust AT&T to charge sponsored data to the sponsor, and not "accidentally" deduct it from my monthly allowance?
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    springsup

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    #9
    Absolutely. How long before they start selling off prioritised traffic, so every other business that isn't paying AT&T suddenly becomes slower?

    This is the beginning of the end. They start with seemingly-innocent things like this, but then there's going to be pressure to get more companies on board in order to boost revenue, and that's when it's going to get ugly.
     
  10. macrumors newbie

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    #10
    So basically if you are an average customer that doesn't use your entire monthly quota of bandwidth, AT&T figured out a way to double sell your data usage to no real benefit to you. If you are a Pre-Paid customer that monitors their usage pretty carefully and would benefit from downloading apps that don't affect your anemic bandwidth quota, screw you.

    ----------


    As soon as they can get rid of those pesky net neutrality laws, they will.
     
  11. macrumors regular

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    #11
    I've talked to Lucent, the bandwidth is there, in fact there's tons of it

    AT&T just keeps closing the faucet one contract at a time

    what a joke :mad:
     
  12. macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

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    #12
    Hope all these "ads" are sponsored. I miss being jailbroken and the Adblock for Safsir.
     
  13. macrumors member

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    #13
    I see some employers/ businesses liking this concept. Now instead of reimbursing you on the full amount (or on a percentage) of your monthly smartphone bill, they will reimburse you for just what was business/ work related. That could be a decent savings for larger organizations...or another way to diminish a perk.
     
  14. macrumors 68020

    jclardy

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    #14
    Oh dear, it is starting. And of course the harbinger is AT&T. They start by promoting this as a feature for the customers (Free data for you!), but eventually they provide preferred sponsors with faster connections and the free web as we know it is gone. Big players get faster connections meaning big sites become more established and small startups get shafted with slower connections.
     
  15. macrumors 68020

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    #15
    Jack prices!

    AT&T will probably jack data prices even further, since customers now need 'less' data
     
  16. macrumors G5

    Rogifan

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    #16
    Hey AT&T, how about when I don't use 5GB in a month (which you forced me to upgrade to so I could use my phone as a hotspot) you roll it over to the next month so if I happen to to over I get credit for when I was under and don't have to pay a stupid fee for going over?
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    Thanks to AT&T the iPhone is where it is today.
     
  18. macrumors 604

    Jessica Lares

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    #18
    I think this is brilliant. That means we can get by on the 300MB plan most likely.

    Amazon, NYT, CNN, and Google need to get onboard. ;)
     
  19. macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

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    #19
    I'm confused... how does this work?

    Is this something like, I can download a crazy huge app from the appstore over cellular at the expense of the developer? Or all data used by an app will be paid for by the developer?
     
  20. macrumors 601

    goobot

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    long island NY
    #20
    Not really, let's just assume company's do do this. If you have a 300mb plan and sometimes go over this would make it so you may not. I guess if a lot of company's did this you could even lower you data plan option. Tho I doubt many will use this.
     
  21. macrumors 68020

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    #21
    Thanks to the iPhone AT&T is where it is today.

    Goes both ways my friend!
     
  22. macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    Not really, check out the history of AT&T.
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    I'm maybe missing something here. Why, as a business, would I like to purchase expensive cellular data plans for my customers than implementing a Wi-Fi network with APs across my shop/business?
     
  24. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
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    Earth
    #24
    If AT&T came out with Rollover Data, I'd be excited. Even if it was only rounded to the nearest 1MB.

    This is just stupid. I see it going wrong in so many ways for both devs and consumers.

    AT&T is going to drop their 300MB plan, make you start out on 1GB. Then lets say majority apps have this feature. So chances are you'll use less than 1GB but paying $30 for 1GB anyway. Now AT&T is double profiting.

    Sometimes I wonder if AT&T is reading this and using what we hate most and going with those plans.

    So I say. I HATE ROLLOVER DATA. STUPID IDEA EVER!
     
  25. macrumors 6502

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    #25
    It's more for businesses to cover data usage expenses made by its employees while performing work for the company.
     

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