December 20, 2014

AT&T: About that 2GB data throttling...

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AT&T wants you to know that they do not have any plans in place to throttle data users once they cross a 2GB threshold.  Speaking in an phone interview with the New York Times, AT&T’s Mark Siegel advises that only the heaviest of users are crossing that mark and those are the “top 5 percent” types who may see a slowdown in speed.  What’s more, he advises that even if you do happen to get that high and find yourself among the data hogs, chances are “very good” that you would not be slowed. As Sigel indicates, only 1 percent of the users on their network were impacted by the plan change.

You may recall hearing earlier this week that AT&T had been sending out notifications to their subscribers for data consumption that barely exceeded 2GB. We, like many of you, found it hard to believe that only it only took 2GB to put someone in the top 5 percentile.  In an age of grandfathered unlimited plans and HD video streaming services, it surprises us to hear that it’s not somewhere in the tens of gigabytes per month.

It’s worth pointing out that AT&T will only throttle you (or threaten) if you are on an unlimited plan.  Those of you with bucket plans have nothing to worry about – you can go about your business, consuming more data than those on the grandfathered rate, without worry.



  • Gina

    As my dear grandmama would say, they are so full of shit their eyes are brown. 

  • Anonymous

    Exactly. I have a messed up Captivate (jacked up IMEI), but is on the non-smartphone plan, has over 13GB without throttling. Thus my next phone WILL be unbranded.

  • tiroger

    What a load of crap! So my getting throttled last month after 2.1 GB was a mistake?

  • Anonymous

    Sooooooo basically AT&T is trying to bully people out of their grandfathered unlimited plans? Thats what it seems like to me.

  • Ds57

    Definitely agree that ma bell is trying to bully people out of their data plans. I am now at 2.4 gb and have already been throttled for 10 days. If they think I’m going to take this much longer they’re crazy. I won’t be switching plans I’ll be switching companies.

    • Ds57

      Last thing…. I think its hilarious that the people with unlimited plans are being jerked around. We are the loyal customers that have been around the longest aka the reason we have unlimited plans in the first place. Why punish your most loyal customers?

  • opiate46

    All AT&T article headlines should pretty much read “AT&T does something shitty to their customers, and tries to make it look like they’re the good guys.”

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/GLBE4EJ7O4LDYDPDRTDHSVFHOY ____

    The biggest point of contention as other noted columnist, bloggers and users have concluded rightly is the deliberate paucity and vagueness of att’s policy.  It’s a moving goal post that stacks the game in their favor without their customers knowing what it is.  Surely, such asymmetrical information setup is designed to give att an advantage and to force those on grandfathered plans of unlimited data to switch to their tiered system.  With 2gb being a threshold, it’s just too much of a coincidence.

    The entire formulation, rollout and communication with customers have been poorly handled.  Calls to their specialist meant only to handle the 5% throttled are ill equipped and poorly trained with one swearing on her mother’s soul that she was correct, that I am being throttled which turned out to be false and that they were actually having more network problems.  So I guess her mother’s soul now belongs to me which I’ll gladly trade for a wooden nickel. 

    Statistically speaking, there’s always going to be a 5% so with each passing month a new group of 5% at a lower and lower threshold will get throttled.  Way to treat your customers.  While I believe att is justified in implementing such controls, I am frustrated by the way they have handled this.  I rather they man up and just eliminate the grandfathered unlimited plan and switch everyone to tiers.  But what does one come to expect from a company that seemingly enjoys cutting their noses to spit their faces?

  • RH

    Unlimited plan here, but with at&t’s SLOW service, it would take a while to reach 2gig LOL.
    I use wi-fi most of the time because it is faster, but hanging onto my unlimited unit at&t takes it away from me.  Last two phones have been unbranded full retail, just for that reason.  I don’t want to change my plan.