According to FierceWireless, AT&T has confirmed that it may throttle their heaviest data users or top 5% in a given billing period. While unlimited data users will still remain unaffected from a price standpoint, they will likely be throttled down to 2G speed levels.
According to the carrier, the new policy will affect a “very small minority” of subscribers who use an “extraordinary” amount of data. “In fact, these customers on average use 12 times more data than the average of all other smartphone data customers.
It was not announced what level of data the tethering will begin at outside of the 5% number but it was however noted that customers would be evaluated on a month-by-month basis.
Playstation announced the name for their NGP handheld gaming device at their press conference at E3 this evening. The device, named Playstation Vita will be priced at $250 (Wifi only) and their exclusive US carrier will be AT&T wireless.
According to MobileBeat, T-Mobile has confirmed it will be making its highly popular Wi-Fi calling feature free on supported Android devices. However, T-Mobile loyalist joy may be short-lived. Analysts are relatively certain that AT&T will put an end to that should the $39 billion dollar merger between the two companies get approved.
Although AT&T has not yet filed its official application to have the FCC review its proposed purchase of T-Mobile. The FCC has taken the necessary first step of opening a Docketto receive documents and information from the corporations and the public. The docket number is WT 11-65 and is being overseen by the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau within the FCC. Consumers have already started to file comments. This will likely be a long process and consumers your voice needs to be heard. We encourage you to file comments in this proceeding. Stacey Higginbotham at Gigaom.com has also posted a list of ways consumers can comment on the proposed merger.
A merger may still be pending between AT&T and T-Mobile it looks like it’s business as usual at TMO. The company announced today plans to undercut their competitors by offering a $79.99 unlimited plan that includes unlimited talk, texting and 2G of data per month (meaning it’s not really “unlimited”).
Their customers will likely have to give up the plan if the merger goes through but it’s clear T-Mobile is still playing the game. In a recent interview on the merger, a T-mobile spokesperson was quoted by CNET as saying “Until this deal is closed, we remain an independent competitor to AT&T. There is no change in service for our customers, and we remain committed to ensuring that our customers have the best experience possible using T-Mobile USA products and services.”
AT&T announced plans today to drastically cut rates on their pre-paid plan options. As reported by Computerworld, the company is now offering 10MB of data for $5, up from 1MB for $4.99.
The news came conveniently as the carrier announced its first GoPhone smartphone for pre-paid customers, the LG Thrive, which goes on sale April 17. One would have to assume AT&T expects these consumers to consume data well past 10x their previous rate if they want to pull a profit taking into account the data allotment increase.
It is widely expected by analysts that carriers will begin heavily courting pre-paid customers who tend to be younger and prefer plans that are paid in advance to avoid needing a credit card to cover the costs for post-paid plans.
According to Silicon Alley Insider, the main reason why AT&T is purchasing T-Mobile is to increase its wireless spectrum. No surprise there but they’ve included a great infographic on their site that illustrates the rise in connected devices. Check it out.