FCC Questioning All Carriers On Unlimited Throttling Policies

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Aug 8, 2014.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    According to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, the United States Federal Communications Commission is now questioning all wireless carriers on their network management policies, asking how carriers choose when to throttle customers, including those with unlimited data plans.

    In a report from Reuters, Wheeler said that the FCC had written to all major U.S. carriers about its concerns on throttling practices following its inquisition into Verizon's upcoming plan to throttle unlimited data customers during peak usage times.
    Last week, after Verizon announced plans to slow down the data speeds of unlimited customers using heavy amounts of data, the FCC questioned the carrier about its policies, with Wheeler stating that he was "deeply troubled" by the decision.

    Verizon responded, suggesting its throttling plans were both fair and legal, and likely to impact only a small subset of customers. Verizon also noted that several other carriers, like Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile all have unlimited data restrictions in place. According to Wheeler, pointing towards the policies of other carriers was not a sufficient response. "'All the kids do it' was never something that worked for me when I was growing up," he said.

    AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile have long had policies in place that allow the carriers to opt to restrict the data usage of customers with grandfathered unlimited plans in an effort to encourage users to switch to pay-by-usage tiered data plans.

    While the FCC did not share the letters sent to AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint, an FCC spokesperson said the letters were similar in nature to the original letter sent to Verizon. That letter asked the carrier to answer specific questions on its rationale for treating customers differently on plan type, the need for such throttling on efficient LTE networks, and the legality of throttling.

    Verizon was the first to receive the letter because of the announcement of a new policy, according to the FCC spokesperson. Verizon will begin throttling its high-usage off-contract LTE customers accessing congested network cells beginning on October 1.

    Article Link: FCC Questioning All Carriers On Unlimited Throttling Policies
  2. JoEw macrumors 65816


    Nov 29, 2009
    Wanna know why nothing will come of this?

    Because they ARE the FCC.
  3. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030


    Sep 18, 2003
    London, UK
    Isn't this a political thread?! Sounds like a state interference policy to me.... And that's coming from someone in the UK...
  4. Renzatic Suspended


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    No one's called anyone a socialist, commie, or fascist yet. Give it about page 2...
  5. theheadguy macrumors 65816

    Apr 26, 2005
    How is regulating a regulated industry unusual?

    The funny part is, in the last thread, you had people screaming that Verizon was being picked on. Now, it's clear they aren't. You also have the group who scream and complain that the consumer is unprotected in the U.S., which is refuted somewhat by this. Lastly, get ready for the people who would love for the wireless industry to dilute their services to us (while maintaining or raising costs per service) because any protection from crappy policies is crudely labeled "state interference."
  6. gigapocket1 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 15, 2009
    BIGGEST BS EVER... Lets throttle someone because they have used a lot of gigs so far... So what if they signed up for Unlimited data.. And so what if its 3 am and no one else is using the towers.. Lets still throttle their data... But ey.. if u go over to this plan.. And pay for more of our amazing fast data.. U can get those fast speeds all day long.. Its just stupid... AT&T and all the other carriers are able to renig on their end of the deal.. But as soon as we want to.. We have to pay the penalty...
  7. gavroche macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2007
    Left Coast
    The fact that it is a governmental body looking into questionable business practices should NOT make it a political issue. Governmental bodies regulate ALL aspects of businesses.... so there literally would be nothing at all that would not thus be considered political.
  8. -LikesMac- macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2010
    I believe this needs to be moved to the political section.

    On topic: I can see this issue ending with all the major carriers just canceling any sort of grandfathered unlimited plans (well, except for T-mobile)...
  9. FieldingMellish Suspended

    Jun 20, 2010
    Just so you know, I called Wheeler and asked him to I intervene....

    By the way, isn't putting this thread directly into the political area with nary a comment being made a form of profiling?
  10. pramirez95 macrumors newbie

    Oct 14, 2013
    not sure what they mean about throttling t-mobile on unlimited plans...been on there unlimited data plan for over a year now and never been throttled...even up to 24 gigs of data in one month...
  11. WissMAN macrumors regular


    Jun 19, 2009
    Lone Star state
    I hear you about the contract thing. The deal was unlimited. But did the contract mention the speed at which said unlimited data would be sent at?

    I for one would think it would/should be at the same speed as the majority so subscribers. :rolleyes:
  12. Four oF NINE macrumors 68000

    Four oF NINE

    Sep 28, 2011
    Hell's Kitchen
    corporations exist at the forbearance of government. Government allows their charters and maintains a court system to enforce their contracts. Government builds an infrastructure that facilitates commerce.

    Government is the people, and The People have a say in the activities of corporations doing business in their countries.
  13. kenroberts83 macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2012
    Fourthly, get ready for people who think that the government can both lower prices and improve services in an industry by decree. Also known as people who never made it past Econ 101.
  14. dlewis23 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 23, 2007
    Thats because for the most part when you pay for it T-Mobiles unlimited data it is unlimited. But I've had a few people who got throttled at times even when on there unlimited plan.
  15. Carlanga macrumors 604


    Nov 5, 2009
    yei FCC! :cool: :)

    I hate that AT&T throttles me after exactly 5GB to speeds of 0.15MB/sec or less making a webpage take about 3 mins just to load, maybe if they weren't that ridiculous w/ the throttling many wouldn't complain.
  16. DarkCole macrumors regular


    Jul 21, 2013
    Looks like someone isn't paying the FCC enough money now.
  17. Carlanga macrumors 604


    Nov 5, 2009
    take your dry joke back to the UK please ;)
  18. kenroberts83 macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2012
    I agreed with you until this statement. Government is not the people. The people are individuals, who all have different wants and desires. The government merely represents at least 51% of the desires of at least 51% of the population.


    There is an election coming up. Trying to rally the base?


    Alternatively, perhaps if you paid for a tiered data plan, they wouldn't throttle you at all.
  19. CrazyForApple macrumors 6502a


    Dec 31, 2012
    Buffalo, NY
  20. ricci macrumors 6502


    Aug 21, 2012
  21. Parasprite macrumors 68000


    Mar 5, 2013
    "Oh wait, other carriers do this too? Why didn't anybody tell us this before we made that announcement..."
  22. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 28, 2005
    In which country?
  23. Four oF NINE macrumors 68000

    Four oF NINE

    Sep 28, 2011
    Hell's Kitchen

    It's more of a theoretical ideal than a practical reality, however I find your deconstruction to be rather bizarre. Within the US at least, government mainly represents the desires of the extremely wealthy, corporations, and the well connected.

    People in the lower economic quintiles have very little representation in government. This is a direct function of how the political system in the US works. We have a tyranny of a two party system that's really a two headed single party committed to promoting the Washington DC establishment consensus.
  24. goodcow macrumors 6502a

    Aug 4, 2007
    Part of me wonders if this is a ploy to get all the carriers to just stop offering unlimited entirely.
  25. mtneer macrumors 68020


    Sep 15, 2012
    And so the carriers can finally get rid of any grandfathered contracts once and for all. There is no commitment by the carrier to indefinitely extend the contract every 2 years.

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