Mobile data restrictions

Discussion in 'iOS 6' started by GreyOS, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. GreyOS macrumors 68040


    Apr 12, 2012
    Restoring an iPhone from iCloud and downloading large apps can be incredibly frustrating due to the requirement to use wifi. Why is up to Apple to police how we use data? Can't there be an option somewhere if you want them to manage it for you?

    Real life frustrations:

    Over Christmas I stayed with my parents who have a very flaky 1mbps internet connection - that's the best they can get in their area. Yet I could get up to 4mbps on 3G, on an all-you-can-eat data package with 3 (one of the few networks in the UK that offer this and unlimited tethering too). Restoring my new iPhone 5 was a rubbish experience. Fortunately my parents do have unlimited data on their broadband, even if it is slow, but it's quite common here to have limits on broadband. If this had been the case, not only would Apple have forced me to use a slow connection over a fast one, but a limited connection over an unlimited one!

    And now back home, and I don't even have wifi! I moved just before Christmas and my flat doesn't have a phone line yet. It's another 4 weeks before I have engineers come over to instal broadband. I've been tethering my 3G connection from my iPhone with no problem. But my iPhone can't download any large apps nor the update to 6.0.2.

    3 have made a big push to make their network fast and unlimited, really pushing mobile data as the future... Apple are holding them back.
  2. diamond.g macrumors 603


    Mar 20, 2007
    I think it is an agreement they have with the carriers. I think Google play store has the same 50MB OTA limitation (though not positive about that)
  3. Daveoc64 macrumors 601

    Jan 16, 2008
    Bristol, UK
    It's all about AT&T.

    The iPhone software was designed around the needs and quirks of AT&T USA's network back in 2007 and Apple has been slow to move things forward since then.

    The notion that the user or other carriers should be allowed to decide which files they download is just alien to Apple.

    I suggest that you avoid using anything of Apple's with the restriction if at all possible - I've switched to a third party Podcast App for example.

    Google does not impose a restriction like that.
  4. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2008
    You are completely wrong. It does not revolve around AT&T. These limitation are set by carriers because the more you use their network the more it costs them to send data. It's a service you pay for and if you just gobble it all up they lose money. Why do you think that they switched to tier data plans?

    It's spectrum, you can only cram so much data through it.
  5. Daveoc64, Jan 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2013

    Daveoc64 macrumors 601

    Jan 16, 2008
    Bristol, UK
    No I'm not

    Yes it does. The iPhone does things that Symbian, Windows Phone, Android, Bada, Blackberry etc. do not do, because it was so heavily integrated with AT&T's network at launch.

    How the phone handles messaging, roaming, voicemail etc.

    It's a limitation set by Apple, not carriers. Many carriers (including the one that I and the OP are on) have complained about the restrictions that Apple imposes. They are powerless to change the limits.

    Most carriers would be quite happy to take people's money for the data that they use.

    I'm sorry, what was that about it not being AT&T-centric?

    Over here, unlimited data is very much alive and well. You've pretty much just proven my point.

    The restrictions in iOS exist to minimise how much data AT&T customers with unlimited data can actually get through.

    AT&T is in the bizarre situation where it's saying : our network is so bad that we can't offer unlimited data, but we won't take it away from our existing customers - we wouldn't want to lose them.
  6. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2008
    Alright, if this is so please refer where I can learn about all of this. Mainly which was talked about to begin with was that updating apps (in terms of size). Also please refer to me the contracts that the carriers have with Apple to show me Apple says they will enforce what they do with one carrier on another. Last time I checked, Apple had software features that worked on one carrier but not the other like tethering.

    Exactly, they would be happy to take people's money. The more you use their data, the more money they have to invest. Last time I checked that's not good. Please show me where any carrier has complained about restrictions placed on them about customers not being able to use more data. I cannot find any via Google search.

    I'm failing to understand how you say that it is AT&T centric? I mean here in the US data usage is much more than that of Europe. Also, there are carriers in Europe that only have tier plans. Yes, some still have unlimited but not all.

    Check this link out:

    Your market hasn't seen quiet the explosion as the US has in terms of data usage and the amount of people using or requesting the data. Hence your operators are not under pressure to provide more. Also, if you think about the costs of creating towers, here in the US the coverage needs to be greater than that of Europe. As your population begins to use more data you will see the cost of data show it's ugly side. The reason of this is because spectrum can physically only transfer so much data. It's called saturation.

    And did any other network see increases like AT&T? Honestly, I don't have any problems with AT&T and haven't for years. I'm the power user of AT&T networks in terms of data. I use roughly on average about 600MB a month. I really don't think any other network saw things as bad as AT&T as no one expected what the iPhone would do to a network. The other networks had years to prepare watching how AT&T was being affected.

    I bet most restriction are still in place because the carriers and Apple have learned that with some they might not be able to respond quickly enough to the market demands. Though even with some restriction they have not been able to respond quickly enough in some areas. Keep in mind growth is good but too much too fast can be negative.

    So keeping that in mind, all these other devices really don't demand much on the network because the features they have might not be enjoyable to use. If you get all these features at once that are data demanding how do you expect any of these networks to meet the demand? Okay, so let's say we lift this download size restriction for carriers who want it, what then? Will demand cause network degration? I bet it will because more people will use it. It's how these features are implemented and the demand these features place on the network.

    Honestly I don't wish of any these restrictions but you have to make sure you make a profit or you are not going to be in business long. That's just the way business is.

    Don't take these arguments personally as I enjoy learning and debating as it can be healthy, don't make this conversation lame.

    Here are some really good reads to understanding our past and our future in the mobile market:
  7. Daveoc64 macrumors 601

    Jan 16, 2008
    Bristol, UK
    As I said, the carrier that I and the OP use has stated in the past that it does not want the 50MB limit to be in place, and that customers should complain to Apple about it.

    EE (now the largest carrier in the UK) has said on Twitter that it's delaying the release of its Flagship App for iOS because its customers cannot download a film that is over 50MB. They want to let people download a movie over LTE - with no data charges. They've already done it on Android.

    I'm not going to take them personally, purely because they sound like an AT&T press release - they don't address the issue of carrier or consumer choice.

    The bottom line is simple: let customers choose how they use data. If there's a level of data that your network cannot handle, don't sell customers a plan where they can hit that.

    If it's ok for someone to download 1000 50MB Apps, but not one 51MB App, then you have a problem.
  8. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2008
    I would like to read about that if your company has asked about that. Is there a news article or something I could see?

    Though that is great that a company says they want to release an app for their customer. I still believe that data needs to be watch in how it is used.

    It does make sense from your side. I'm not trying to sound like an AT&T press release. Keep in mind features that Apple has made that consume data are used much more compared to other devices because they've made them enjoyable to use. So if you start lifting all these restrictions at once and implement new ones that people are demand, growth might go out of control.

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