AT&T Claiming I Tether...When I Don't

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by thehankstar, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. thehankstar, Nov 19, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2014

    thehankstar macrumors newbie

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    Jun 28, 2009
    #1
    I'm confused and am hoping someone can help me.

    I received a text message and email from AT&T claiming that I'm tethering on my phone when I'm not. I don't really do anything that remotely passes as tethering, as far as I understand. They're threatening to remove me from my unlimited plan. Super shady stuff, if you ask me.

    When I called them, they told me that it's likely because I use AirPlay that their system registered it as tethering and that I just needed to stop using AirPlay (!?!), which I recognize is just b.s. spewed by some agent that didn't know what he's talking about.

    This is just wrong, right? Do I have any recourse here to prove I'm not tethering other than just calling and bitching and hoping they don't screw me out of my unlimited plan?

    EDIT: Realizing I should have added some clarity - iPhone 6, 64 GB, not jailbroken
     
  2. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

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    #2
    So, can you tell us what you ARE doing that is not tethering? Aside from airplay, anything else?
     
  3. thehankstar thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 28, 2009
    #3
    I would love to, but there's really nothing out of the ordinary that I'm doing. I read my work email, I stream Spotify while at the desk at work, I play a little mobile Madden, I have my Jawbone UP24 attached through bluetooth. I don't even really use AirPlay too much other than to share a photo of my daughter with my wife real quick. I'm obviously on WiFi at those times.

    My wife does all of this as well (except she's a Bloons fan, herself), and they're claiming it's my phone that's doing the tethering.
     
  4. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

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    #4
    How much data are you using?

    I am unfamiliar with the jawbone device. Does it pull data at all?
     
  5. thehankstar thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    It's essentially the same thing as a FitBit or a Nike Fuelband.

    I've used 5 gb over the last month (admittedly one of my higher usage months).
     
  6. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

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    #6
    I don't have either of those things, so I am not very familiar. I guess what I was alluding to is whether or not that peripheral pulls data using your phone's connection in any way.

    I've certainly seen folks post WAY higher data usages than 5GB for the month, so I wouldn't think it's that at all.

    I can say that I remember people having this same problem years ago, when ATT first started throttling data. Not sure anything really came of it, it just kind of stopped.

    ----------

    Having read a bit about the UP, it seems everything goes through an APP? So that's probably not the issue. Strange. Sorry I am not much of a help.
     
  7. thehankstar thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 28, 2009
    #7
    No worries. Thank you for listening to my rants. Really annoyed with AT&T right now. Just hoping I don't lose my Unlimited plan over something I'm not doing.
     
  8. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    #8
    Sounds like their unofficial tethering detection has some flaws if you're telling the truth.
    And once they accuse you and claim that you're tethering there isn't much you can do. You can disagree and deny it but they can switch you.
    Sounds messed up and maybe they're opening up for lawsuits. But it would be hard for you to prove you're not tethering.
    On the other hand they should be the ones that should have to prove that you used tethering. When, how much, for what and towards what device connected.
    They could start claiming unofficial tethering to all of us still on unlimited to slowly get most of us off the plan.
     
  9. thehankstar thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    Yeah, I mean - I'll open up and say that I tried tethering with stuff like MyWi back when I was on my 3GS in 2010-11 when I was really into the jailbreak scene, but I just haven't had a need to jailbreak with my 4S and now my 6. It's not even possible to tether without jailbreaking, as far as I know, so it's just kind of crap that they think they can screw me over like this for no real reason.
     
  10. McDaddio macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 6, 2014
    #10
    Yeah, this is kind of weird. You would think whatever they have for detection would be coupled with looking at the amount of data used. Hovering around 5G is not at all meaningful - one would think they would go after the 15G+ people who they suspect of tethering.
     
  11. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    #11
    Yes.
    I'd be really pissed too if they're accusing me and switching my plan over something I did not do.
     
  12. Chatter macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    This doesnt help you OP (sorry) but come to TMobile! No such b.s. to deal with. ATT seems to like stirring the pot with customers.
     
  13. zorinlynx macrumors 601

    zorinlynx

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    #13
    I'm surprised AT&T even cares if you tether anymore. You get 5GB, then throttled to horrible unusable speeds. Even if you do tether the most you can use is 5GB, realistically!

    Maybe this is indeed a ploy to kick customers off unlimited plans. Should be interesting if any other users get these accusations. Though I do wonder, again, why AT&T would want to even kick people off the plan when they can't even use much more than 5GB.

    ----------

    Oooh, let me add one theory... Are you using "show desktop version" in Mobile Safari? Maybe AT&T's tether detection uses browser user agents; if Safari is sending a desktop browser user agent this might trip their detection.

    Just a thought.
     
  14. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    #14
    Well said.
    We will have to keep an eye out in case it starts becoming a trend with unlimited plan customers.
     
  15. terraphantm macrumors 68040

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    #15
    Odd. When you browse the web, do you frequently use the "request desktop version" feature? I wonder if they're just looking at the user agent or something

    Edit: zorinlynx beat me to it
     
  16. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    #16
    I really doubt it has anything to do with viewing sites in full desktop version.
    That has been available and used extensively for many years.
     
  17. bunnicula macrumors 68040

    bunnicula

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    Jul 23, 2008
    #17
    Agreed. I've been doing that for years AND going over 5GB on UDP and never been accused of tethering. Even when I had a JB 3G, 3GS, and 4. I stopped JB-ing with the 4.
     
  18. thehankstar thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #18
    I don't use the desktop version for much of anything that I can think of off the top of my head. I do use Chrome for my browsing, but I can't imagine it's that.

    They refuse to give me information (even how much of my data I'm supposedly tethering), so I literally have no idea how they came to the conclusion I'm tethering.
     
  19. RByers8252 macrumors regular

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    Sep 12, 2014
    #19
    You have proof. Go to an att store and show your app usage in settings. If the normal apps account for all the data usage fight it.
     
  20. JayLenochiniMac macrumors G5

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    #20
    If it starts becoming a trend with the false accusation, they're opening themselves up to a big fat class action lawsuit.
     
  21. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    #21
    True.
    Not sure if this is an isolated issue or will continue but they seem to be digging their own Hole lately with unlimited data customers.
     
  22. terraphantm macrumors 68040

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    #22
    Except all of our contracts prevent us from joining a class. Or suing AT&T at all -- we're forced to go through arbitration
     
  23. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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  24. JayLenochiniMac macrumors G5

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    #24
    True, but I'd think false accusation isn't in the contract so who knows? There have been many instances of the court overruling the contract if something illegal or fishy had occurred.
     
  25. NukeIT macrumors regular

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    Mar 20, 2013
    #25
    I don't think your 5GB usage is the trigger unless you were a real low usage user previously and all of te sudden had an uptick.

    I regularly use 7-10 GB a month and have never had issues with my unlimited plan. A few years ago I got the ominous text about exceeding 5GB but have never even noticed throttling. (They do say throttling is based off system demand off your current tower connection, so I just must be lucky and not connecting to high demand towers)
     

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