Verizon: We Throttle Unlimited Data to Provide an ‘Incentive to Limit Usage’ FCC: “Ummm. No.”
Verizon Wireless has told FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler that its policy of throttling unlimited data users on congested cell sites is perfectly legal and necessary to give heavy data users an incentive to stop using their phones so much.
Wheeler had sent a letter to Verizon accusing the company of throttling unlimited data users in order to make more money, presumably by encouraging users to purchase new data plans. “‘Reasonable network management’ concerns the technical management of your network; it is not a loophole designed to enhance your revenue streams,” Wheeler wrote. Wheeler didn’t argue that throttling itself is never reasonable, but he called it “disturbing” that “Verizon Wireless would base its ‘network management’ on distinctions among its customers’ data plans, rather than on network architecture or technology.”
IT’S NOT JUST VERIZON: ALL MAJOR US CARRIERS THROTTLE “UNLIMITED” DATA
On AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile, top 5% of users are throttled to ease congestion.
“I know of no past Commission statement that would treat as ‘reasonable network management’ a decision to slow traffic to a user who has paid, after all, for ‘unlimited’ service,” Wheeler added.