$30 for tethering....eh?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by buc, Jul 9, 2010.

  1. buc macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    Let me start by saying I love the I4. Upgraded from my 3G and couldn’t be happier. I haven’t had a proximity sensor problem, and my reception overall is better. I can replicate the death grip issue in areas of weaker signal (office, my basement), but it’s not how I naturally hold a phone and I’ve yet to drop a single call due due to this reception issue. Love the camera, display, faster processor etc.

    My only complaint: Why does AT&T charge us $30/month to tether? What is that $30 actually “buying” if we’re not even getting more data? I’m currently on the unlimited data plan, but would downgrade to get the tethering if it were free. It just seems like they are charging us $30/month for…nothing really. If it takes an application or special piece of software to enable tethering then let us make the one-time purchase of that software and be done with it. Or conversely if you throw on some additional data along with that $30 payment, then fine. But to charge $30 for nothing seems like a crappy way to treat your customers. Really bothers me and for the first time I’m actually considering jail breaking to get around this “$30 for nothing” issue as I see it. So- can anyone out there actually justify what this $30/month is for?
  2. bat95132 macrumors member

    Apr 26, 2010
    How do you come up with $30? They are charging $20.....

    Data Plan is $25 which included 2GB Data and Tethering is another $20 making it $45 total.

    You are paying them for the privileged and nothing more. They can so they will. They will say fine don't wanna pay go to someone else and then you will have different issues with that carrier. (I'm not picking on you just what the carrier will say)

  3. buc thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    ok, $20...same principle still applies.

    Paying them for the "privelege"?? Sure, they can do this. But it's a stupid move imo long-term. This is just another reason to abandon AT&T for life when another carrier eventually gets on the iphone bandwagon. They are obviously charging the consumers for nothing...the data was already paid for and you aren't getting anymore for the extra $20.

    Now you are charging me extra (and a fairly significant extra at that) depending on how i use the data i already paid for?? If you are going to stick it to me like that, at least make it a somewhat palatable $5/month so i can still sleep at night...sheesh.
  4. army91c macrumors 6502a

    Mar 9, 2009
    ^what he said.

    So basically (judging from your post above) you know what's going on and you just wanted to make a "bash AT&T" post.
  5. iphone1105 macrumors 68020


    Oct 8, 2009
    You could just quit whining and not tether and not worry about it, ya know, 'cuz like free wifi is everywhere!
  6. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    All the carriers try to charge for tethering. If a carrier decided to actually compete and not all follow each other, then they'd have competition and a competitive advantage. But today, not so much.
  7. oakland6980 macrumors member


    Jun 21, 2010
    just keep your unlimited plan. no matter what someday you'll regret it if you change. wait for a jailbreak then you can jailbreak it. use MyWi so you can tether or use your phone as a mobile hotspot. use 3GUnrestrictor for 3G Facetime. You'll want to keep the unlimited
  8. D1G1T4L macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2007
    Savannah, GA
  9. mackmgg macrumors 65816


    Nov 2, 2007
    You could jailbreak and buy PDAnet for free tethering?
  10. D1G1T4L macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2007
    Savannah, GA
    Link to jailbreaking the IP4?
  11. buc thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    Unfortunately it's not in my car when we're traveling and the wife is working and needs to connect to her network at the office (same with myself). Tethering would beat the hell out of trying to find free wifi. Unforunately (or fortunately i guess) this only happens once or twice a month so certainly isn't worth paying another $20 for the "privilege" of using the data i've already paid for.
  12. buc thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    Seriously? All carriers charge for tethering? Was unaware of that...frankly i'm surprised there isn't more of an outcry against this practice.

    It's got to be totally "free" money for the carriers...i can't see what costs would be attached to this service for them, outside of the initial design/implementation of the software.
  13. L.C.W. macrumors regular


    Jun 20, 2010
    T-Mo does not charge for tethering... unfortunately, they also don't support the iPhone 4's (and 3G/3GS) 3G band (850/1900).... so it's moot... but T-Mo will not harass you for tethering... in fact, they have instruction on their site to allow you to do so...

    I may indeed go back to T-Mo - just left them recently for the iP4... but contemplating abandoning even that, due to AT&T's ridiculous pricing and nickel&diming.... costing me almost double per month... from $70 to $120ish...
  14. Macficionado macrumors newbie

    Jun 19, 2010
    This is actually very simple and can see it as "The data plan is $45 dollars per month, but you get a $20 dollar discount if you promise to use less data".

    AT&T has a big constraint: bandwidth. Even if, for you, unlimited data costs the same, for AT&T providing you with more data is more costly than providing you with less data. The pricing with tethering is a step into trying to make the pricing scheme reflect the reality of the cost.

    Consider what would happen if everyone were charged per byte, such that the mean person ends up paying $25 dollars. Half of the people would be better off, and half of the people would be worse off (not really, but I'll spare you the median != mean explanation). With the current "25 for all data", people with less consumption are having to subsidize those with more consumption, and this is unfair.

    In the same way, AT&T can only allow tethering in two ways:
    (a ) Charge more for tetherers, since they will be using more data
    (b ) Charge everyone a higher flat fee.

    They've probably run the numbers and decided that (b ) is not an option, because some light data users would not be willing to use this service under the price.

    I'd be more than happy if I could tether for free, and if my data plan were $10 bucks total. However, I don't really think that AT&T is trying to rip me off for charging me more if I use a service more. In fact, I'd advocate for charging people for exactly what they consume.
  15. iPhone Addict macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2009
    San Francisco, CA
    If you don't want to pay the $20 extra for the privilege (I don't blame you!) then just wait a couple more weeks until the updated firmware comes out from Apple. A jailbreak will be following that pretty quickly and you can then make a one time purchase of PDAnet ($10) or some other program and tether all you want.

    Don't expect that switching to another carrier (when the iPhone becomes available) will make anything better for you, as the consumer. All the carriers are colluding with each other in this market and will match each other at every single price point. A good example of this is recently when Verizon raised their Early Termination Fee from $175 to $325 -- guess who followed suit immediately? AT&T. The thinking is not "Let's go cheaper than them to get more customers and more profit", rather the prevalent thought is "Ooh, if they can get away with that, we should be able to also -- raise the price!!"
  16. oakland6980 macrumors member


    Jun 21, 2010
    i wont be out probably until apple relases an update that is supposed to fix all the stuff they screwed up on.
  17. buc thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010

    I understand what you're saying, but at the end of the day if i'm paying for 2G of data, then i should be able to use up to that 2G of data whether i'm using it to load videos on my phone or tethering and loading videos to my laptop. I could see your point more if they didn't charge extra for tethering and you "tethered" 5 gig of data on a 2 gig plan or something.

    As for jailbreaking, like i said i need to look more into it. have always been afraid to because it just seems wrong, if not outright illegal. Also i don't fully understand the risks associated with it (ie do you lose your warranty? support?). Will definitely be more motivated to look into it now however.
  18. braddick macrumors 68040


    Jun 28, 2009
    Encinitas, CA
    I'd purchase this tethering from AT&T if I could also tether the iPad. Why is this not possible? (I searched and didn't locate a thread for this but just in case there is one, didn't want to start my own.)
  19. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    T-Mobile doesn't explicitly support it either. Will be interesting what they say when Froyo is installed on a phone they sell directly and people can tether and even use it as a WiFi hotspot. Would be great if they'd formally say people can do it. Their terms of service say the following:
    1. Permissible and Prohibited Uses
    Your Data Plan is intended for Web browsing, messaging, and similar activities on your device and not on any other equipment. Unless explicitly permitted by your Data Plan, other uses, including for example, tethering your device to a personal computer or other hardware, are not permitted.​
    Folks can tether Android phones on any carrier, or jailbroken iPhones on AT&T. I don't really see how carriers can stop it other than 'say' its a violation of terms of service. AT&T is being more effective stopping it by capping data to only 2GB. Its very hard for the carriers to definitively tell if the data being consumed is meant for the phone or a tethered device. Especially on Android, which supports flash, can download any content, and can even change its browser identifiers, I don't see how the carrier can know for sure if its being tethered.
  20. -aggie- macrumors P6


    Jun 19, 2009
    Where bunnies are welcome.
    For one thing, they charge $20 for tethering, so compared to the $60 they could have tried to charge, that's a deal. Is it fair? Maybe not, but people knew they were going to charge something for it, just like banks charge ATM fees. For a new person to AT&T that's not so bad, since they don't have unlimited data, but for a person who has unlimited data, I don't think it's worth it to lose that for just the oppportunity to tether. In those cases, I'd suggest using an old jailbroken 3G and tethering through that.
  21. topmounter macrumors 68020


    Jun 18, 2009
    FEMA Region VIII
    Here is why:

    AT&T sells you 2GB of data per month, but knows that the chances of you actually using that amount of bandwidth on a smart phone is HIGHLY unlikely.

    It's like a restaurant charging you to take home your left-overs in a doggy-bag.
  22. mgamber macrumors 6502a


    Jun 12, 2008
    AT&T has complained about their system being overloaded by iPhones since day 1, of course they're going to charge for tethering. Do you really it need it so badly you'll pay $20 for it? Obviously not, so there's one less person pounding their network for no real reason. Those that actually do it for valid reasons, such as working on the road and so on, won't think twice about paying $20. It's certainly cheaper then the $60 a month you'd pay to put a dedicated carrier modem online, at least with Verizon, and it's probably close to that on every other carrier. Further, they won't jailbreak to do it because who knows when AT&T might get tired of that, too?

    Ah, for the "old days" when you could do whatever you wanted and no one had a clue. All at EDGE speeds, of course.
  23. maturola macrumors 68040


    Oct 29, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    What other carrier are you going to go and no pay additional for it??? Sprint charge +$20 few for the Evo that is a "just because" fee...I am sure other carrier will too once the iphone is available on those networks
  24. oakland6980 macrumors member


    Jun 21, 2010
    Jailbreaking is not illegal at all. you own the phone you can do what ever you want with it. I like to compare jailbreaking an iphone to a fast car. You buy a Corvette but Chevy says you can only go the speed limit. but everyone wants to go faster so they mod the Corvette to go fast as it can. Same with the phone its capable of much more than what Apple gives you. (jailbreaking to use cracked/pirated apps is illegal but thats obvious). as for you warranty it does break it but all you have to do is restore the phone and there are no traces of a jailbreak. dont restore from a backup as there will be back ups of the jailbroken apps if you were going to take your phone it to apple. I've jailbroken iDivices since firmware 1.1 and it is much easier to do now than then. Once you jailbreak you wont go back. There are so many basic features that apple neglects that are possible with a JB. People always say that they're scared that they might brick their phone. that is very hard to do and you have to be trying to brick it. Serioulsy just do it.

    Note*** A Jailbreak for the iPhone 4 is not yet release as they are waiting for the new apple update to release it. As to know when it is just follow @MuscleNerd on twitter and most release are on blog.iphone-dev.org the new release is going to much like Spirit a userland jb for all devices on 3.1.3 from @Comex. and will be for all iDevices again.
  25. Steve686 macrumors 68040


    Nov 13, 2007
    US>FL>Miami/Dade>Sunny Isles Beach>Condo
    open a separate line and pay $60/month for wireless connect via USB into your computer if you don't want to pay $20/month to tether. :rolleyes:

    i am glad to finally have un-jb tether and think $20/month is worth it. my opinion of course. even with a 2gb cap, and $10 per 1gb thereafter, it's worth the price.

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