T-Mobile 'Binge On' Adds YouTube, Google Play Movies, and More

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Mar 17, 2016.

  1. MacRumors
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    T-Mobile has announced that Binge On, its free video streaming feature, now supports YouTube, Google Play Movies, Discovery GO, Fox Business, Red Bull TV, and many other newly added video providers. The complete list of partners is available through T-Mobile's website.

    Binge On is a free program that allows T-Mobile customers on a qualifying Simple Choice plan to stream unlimited 480p video from over 50 partners, including Netflix, HBO NOW, and Hulu since launch, without any of the data used counting towards their plan. The incentive has been criticized by some as a violation of net neutrality -- accusations that T-Mobile has repeatedly denied.

    In December, YouTube accused T-Mobile of throttling all video, and not just the video of its Binge On partners. T-Mobile responded by saying that "mobile optimized" or "downgraded" are better phrases to describe how Binge On works, and stressed that all customers can disable the feature through their account settings. Earlier in the month, the FCC said it was looking into how the program works.

    Yesterday, T-Mobile announced that it has renewed its partnership with Major League Baseball. Ahead of the upcoming season, the carrier said it will be gifting all T-Mobile customers with a free one-year subscription to MLB.TV Premium, a cross-platform service for streaming live baseball on iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, Android, PC, Xbox, PlayStation, Chromecast, Roku, smart TVs, and more.

    Article Link: T-Mobile 'Binge On' Adds YouTube, Google Play Movies, and More
     
  2. Andres Cantu
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    Andres Cantu

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  3. dominiongamma
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    I could never go back to 480p. I can see this being useful for people who have certain amount of data but I pay 20 bucks a month for unlimited so it's pointless for me
     
  4. movie-mac
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    If this isn't a violation of net neutrality, I guess nothing is.
     
  5. jmcrutch
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    And a reminder to all the haters, Binge-On can be turned off in T-Mobile settings, so this is simply an OPTION to utilize if it makes sense for you.
     
  6. jacobh101
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    switched from verizon to tmobile last week...been experiencing better service in Boston than VZ..at home getting speeds of 50mbps down and 15/20mbps up...crazy that I was paying double for all these years.
     
  7. dannyyankou
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    dannyyankou

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    Well you can turn binge on off...
     
  8. movie-mac
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    That's not the point of net neutrality! If you are a service not on the list of "partners", you can't turn 'Binge on' ON…
     
  9. BeSweeet
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    BeSweeet

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    Technically (AFAIK), with Binge On enabled, non-whitelisted sources are subject to some sort of optimization -- the data used just isn't ignored.

    I just don't see the issue with Binge On and net neutrality. If a service that someone uses isn't whitelisted, then they can continue using said service like normal, as nothing changes for them.
     
  10. 12vElectronics
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    12vElectronics

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    T Mobile gets better and better every single day
     
  11. goaliemn
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    I don't think it is since they aren't charging the providers for it, and any legal provider can request to join.

    Sponsored data, like some of the other companies are doing, seems like more of a violation.
     
  12. movie-mac
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    Net neutrality in this case isn't so much about the user (well, in the long run it is), but more about the providers of a service. You don't think being a "partner" for Binge on is free, do you? Of course, if you are YouTube or Netflix, you can afford the service charge. If you are Vimeo or Spotify, currently not on the partner list, they probably can as well in the future. But what about smaller/new services? They are at a disadvantage competing with the big players anyway. If users are incentivized to only use the big players (able to pay the Binge on service charge) because that is/can be cheaper for them, then for those smaller services it will be even harder to find an audience.
     
  13. joueboy
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    I thought this is brilliant but turning on binge-on does make watching video from none supported site almost unwatchable. It buffers like crazy, I think maybe because this is a result of realtime encoding to a much lower file size from the original source. I mean everytime! I feel like I wanna throw my phone everytime it happens, it's ridiculous!
     
  14. movie-mac, Mar 17, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016

    movie-mac
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    Is there a source for that? Couldn't find one.

    But even if it is free (for now), as a provider you still need to apply and be accepted. There is no guarantee this will always be (or even was) the case.

    I agree, for a customer this sounds like good deal right now (ignoring the question about quality), but it is another step towards net un-neutrality. And in the long run, that won't be good for customers.
     
  15. springsup
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    springsup

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    Yes but it gives those services which are whitelisted a built-in advantage over those which are not.

    Net neutrality is about the second word - neutrality. You can optimise video on the network, sure - but you must apply those rules equally to all services and not favour certain business partners.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 17, 2016 ---
    Yes but they don't have to accept those other providers, do they? Maybe Verizon invests in some upstart streaming video provider and T-Mobile doesn't accept them in to Binge-On because they don't want that service to take off. That would violate the principle behind net neutrality - that the internet is an economic environment itself, and that all businesses should have an equal playing-field on which to compete. The network providers shouldn't be gatekeepers, allowing their private business interests to manipulate large swathes of the digital economy.
     
  16. hlfway2anywhere
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    You looked really hard didn't you.

    http://www.t-mobile.com/offer/binge-on-streaming-video.html#
     

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  17. Michael Goff
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    Michael Goff

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    Nope, they're just throttled.
     
  18. 7thson
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    7thson

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    I guess Google got over their objection to Binge On. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!
     
  19. SpasticPat
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  20. movie-mac
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    Ok, so it is free. For now. If T-Mobile likes your service. That makes it (at the very least potentially) not net neutral.

    There is a simple solution for the whole problem. T-Mobile should just provide the service to all content. They could still have partners, that provide the smaller videos themselves, that should cover all the big players and therefore a majority of the traffic. For services that aren't partners (yet), they would have to compress those videos themselves. Essentially something like Opera Turbo for video on a network level. A little harder to do for T-Mobile, but net neutral…
     
  21. bushido
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    i wish as the biggest provider in Germany they would care as much about their customers as they do in the states lol. here they call 1 GB of data amazing and block VOIP such as WhatsApp Calls and Facetime over mobile data smh
     
  22. MrXiro
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    MrXiro

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    A. Net Neutrality doesn't apply to Mobile Data
    B. There is no exchange or money and this is an optional service you can opt out of as opposed to a required one IE At&t's data throttling or Verizon's sponsored ads that don't use your data.

    *As repeated to exhaustion at this point.
     
  23. movie-mac
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    Yes it does. Just to a lesser degree. Which can and should be considered a problem in and of itself. More and more traffic will go to mobile, not (fully) applying net neutrality there, makes it kind of pointless.
    Of course, all this only applies to the US.

    "Optional service", sure. But we know how things like that usually go. First, it's an optional service on one provider. It catches on, becomes an optional service on all providers. Then the first provider thinks, hey this is a great, I'll offer a contract with "Binge-on" only etc. Ok, this is a worst case scenario, but you never know.

    But here is the point: All of this would be fine, as long as the provider treats all content equal. Which they don't.
    Essentially, without net neutrality, you will have to pay your service provider more for access to more obscure data than to mainstream (i.e. YouTube, Netflix) data, although it is the same "dumb data" to the provider.
     
  24. wombat94
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    Why does everyone jump to the worst-case Net Neutrality scenarios when it comes to BingeOn?

    T-Mobile is doing this for the health/economy of their network - not for the exclusion or preferential treatment of any subset of providers' content.

    The service is able to be opted out of by both content providers and customers. T-Mobile has stated they will not charge the content providers a fee, and they are willing to work with any content providers to integrate them into the BingeOn platform.

    And they definitely are not trying to block out other cell carriers, as the already DO have BingeOn enabled for Verizon's video stream service Go90 - and have since day one of BingeOn's rollout in November, if I am not mistaken.

    Net neutrality is something worth being concerned about, but it appears to me that T-Mobile is doing everything they can to not be preferential in their treatment of one type/source of content over another.
     
  25. JohnApples
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    Just wanted to point out that Spotify is in fact part of the unlimited streaming program with T-Mobile.

    http://www.t-mobile.com/offer/free-music-streaming.html
     

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