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Verizon to put some limits on unlimited data

Verizon to crack down on heaviest users of unlimited data

If you've managed to stay on an unlimited data plan on Verizon, you might soon notice that your speeds beginning to slow down if your using a lot of data . A limited set of customers will fall under the umbrella of Verizon's so-called "Network Optimization" policy, which Verizon says is not throttling. The shift impacts customers in a very specific set of circumstances, according to Verizon:

Starting in October 2014, Verizon Wireless will extend its network optimization policy to the data users who: fall within the top 5 percent of data users on our network, have fulfilled their minimum contractual commitment, and are on unlimited plans using a 4G LTE device. They may experience slower data speeds when using certain high bandwidth applications, such as streaming high-definition video or during real-time, online gaming, and only when connecting to a cell site when it is experiencing heavy demand.

Are you affected by Verizon's policy shift? Let us know below in the comments.

Source: Verizon

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Reader comments

Verizon to put some limits on unlimited data

184 Comments

Those sons of bit*es. Seriously?!? I can't believe policy can change just like that without signing anything off. Another reason for me to switch soon.

It's off contract customers only so they aren't under any obligations. Plus, it is a very specific and unlikely set of circumstances that lead to a slight decrease in speed.

I bought my Lumia Icon full retail just because I don't wanna deal with 2 or 6Gb limits. My monthly average is 8-12Gbs used, so once I'll come back from Europe ill be feeling a difference. And yes I'm not obligated to stay with them BUT that doesn't mean they can alter my use habits

I actually just took the plunge. Upgraded less than an hour ago. I figured it would come to this anyway. I agree that losing unlimited data to a measly 2GB a month was unacceptable. I found out i could get 6GB for the price of 2, so i settled on that. I really needed a new phone and could not find a phone that is better than my current one (HTC Droid DNA) on craigslist, nor can i afford to pay full costs for the phone. I hope it works out. Wifi everywhere...sigh...here i come...

Every unlimited is off contract by now. I don't care what the circumstances, that wasn't the deal they made. I'll be looking to join the class action law suit someone will be inevitably starting.

I'm signing up with you then.. I signed up for $30 unlimited years ago without any decrease in speeds. Love when contracts mean nothing these days.

But... that contract is no longer binding.  That's what they mean by not under contract.  Not that I agree with the policy in any way.  But not being under/in a contract means they can change the terms at any time, just as you can leave at any time.

Not how it works. The contract is binding. The two years is just a stipulation on the customer. After that, we can leave at any time but they can't cancel at any time unless you violate the terms.

"We may change prices or any other term of your Service or this agreement at any time,but we'll provide notice first, including written notice if you have Postpay Service. If you use your Service after the change takes effect, that means you're accepting the change. If you're a Postpay customer and a change to your Plan or this agreement has a material adverse effect on you, you can cancel the line of Service that has been affected within 60 days of receiving the notice with no early termination fee if we fail to negate the change after you notify us of your objection to it."

Are you done?

This is almost word for word how Network Optimization went into place for 3G customers on unlimited data as well...what makes you all think you will be successful at a class action lawsuit when it was successfully done on 3G years ago?

Also, it doesn't automatically affect you: "...only when connecting to a cell site when it is experiencing heavy demand."

Offload to WiFi when available and your usage will drop. When you need to use 4G do so, you probably won't be in that top 5% and you probably aren't on a congested cell site anyways. That fully depends on when, where and how you use your device of course, but seriously, it isn't that big of a deal and the carrier has every right to maintain a certain level of service for other users and if you are dragging the network down then they can nudge you to pay more attention to how you use it.

You still won't be charged overage fees, but you probably will see HD drop to SD, but you are still getting "unlimited" data. They didn't say they will shut you off at all... so what part of the contract (which is expired in these cases) are they breaking again?

You hit them with a lawsuit and they terminate you as a customer and now you have no data speeds... People think that they have power but they employ 30 lawyers to insulate themselves. Your lawyer < Army of Lawyers. Also he will say you can fight it so he can suck you dry with legal fees fighting something that will inevitable lose.

That's what a class action is for and yes, Verizon loses them. The FCC will be interested in it as well.

^I have to agree with your point. The fcc also issued a warning to broadband companies to give customers their promised/advertised data speeds or else... and one thing I do know about the fcc is that they will issue large fines and demand customer refunds. (Remember the subscription sms charges from tmobile and the unapproved app charges from (I forgot) that were recently scourned by the fcc.) All I can say is that if enough ppl file a complaint with their state attorney general AND the fcc, there would definitely be a case!

Again, this has happened before, when it was implemented on the 3G network. Why is now any different? What makes this class action successful this time around?

Speeds... I thought this was about "unlimited" data. Isn't that remaining in effect?

While I'm not saying that they can't do this or that I have a legal leg to stand on, why are you so anti-consumer? Do you own a lot of stock in Verizon or something? A lot of other countries have such better cell service and high speed internet that it makes the USA look third world in comparison, yet a lot of people on these sites are always "yeah, go Big Oligopoly carrier, stick it to the customer!!!11!!" I don't understand it.

There is absolutely no reason that people should have to settle for the speed and usage limits that we do, other than corporate greed. I'm all for a company making a profit, even making great profits, but how about some balance in pricing? The concept of a choice in internet, phone, and television is all just a ruse anyway. When you have less than a handful of major players, and no real alternatives, there isn't truly any competition.

I don't think it's anyone being anti-consumer, rather, we are just pointing out that this up-in-arms attitude and spouting off about class action lawsuits is pointless.

Also, the talk about going to another carrier for whatever reason... go then! But the same practices are probably in place there as well.

All this huffing and puffing over nothing. So I'm just providing angles that will undoubtedly be exploited if a lawsuit ever arises. Do don't waste your time or money chasing it.

As I posted a few other times. The same thing happened with 3G three years ago. It wasn't illegal or a breach of contract or whatever then, so it won't be now.

The contract just freezes you with the company for whatever amount of time. 2yrs later I can leave at any time, but I'm still under the same deal that they initially offered. Besides I don't remember reading that my plan can change.

Actually that is not true. I renewed my contract in February and I kept my unlimited data. You just have to know where to go and who to ask. I also paid subsidized pricing for my LG G2.

There are plenty of fresh unlimited contracts from last fall, and this winter. VZW likes to have glitches and let them re-up.

I will believe this when Verizon opens their logs and lets me comb through it to see the real picture. Also, top 5% of users is such a sneaky way of listing things. I'm fairly certain that when they say top 5% it means of all customers, so if 30-50% of their customers aren't smartphone users, then that greatly impacts what consists of top 5% of data users. My usual usage is around 7 gigs, but I have climbed as high as 20 if I had to go out of town on a business trip and the wifi was crappy at the hotel. I wonder if they will also be removing the $20 tack on fee that lets you get unlimited tethering?

I swear if only T-Mobile had decent coverage I would swap to them in a heartbeat. I have been paying full price for my phones to keep unlimited data. Verizon posts a record profit quarter and then hammer down on their users? Rediculous!

Really? So your whole home internet should be handled by them when you know for a fact you were only signing up for cell phone days plan. And don't say you don't have every internet connection in your house going through some hot spot.

That was the deal. Unlimited, period. $30 on top of that and you got unlimited hotspot, No throttling. If they can't deal with it they shouldn't have offered it. I've had to buy three phones at full price so far. That was the tradeoff for staying on the plan.

Unlimited hotspot is a $30/month adder to the plan. You can get around that, and legally, if you have an android.

Oh they can deal with it, they just want to squeeze their base as much as they can. We already make 5billion net each quarter... Let's try for 5.2 why not I need another 20million bonus anyways to pay people to kick my customers in the groin

Devils advocate: That isn't verizon's tradeoff to make though, its yours. I would be willing to bet that Verizon has some way of not being bound by a contract that has expired. And keep in mind you have to be not only in the top 5%, your cell tower has to be saturated.

Also, lets be real. Buying a phone off contract saves you money :P

It is Verizon's tradeoff when they decided not to let existing customers re-up. That's the only difference, two years for subsidized phone.

Except that its not unlimited. Its 5 GB. I moved me and my wife to the new Edge plans since they lowered the price. Got 10 GB (that would be exactly as much data as we both got with "unlimited" combined) and it ended up costing us less per month. Not much less, but I was never budging off my old unlimited plan to play more for less.

No, it was unlimited. I remember asking when I swapped to Verizon years ago because ATT had just started the unlimited = 5GB thing.

Regarding throttling:

"How is this different than throttling?
The difference between our Network Optimization practices and throttling is network intelligence.  With throttling, your wireless data speed is reduced for your entire cycle, 100% of the time, no matter where you are. Network Optimization is based on the theory that all customers should have the best network possible, and if you’re not causing congestion for others, even if you are using a high amount of data, your connection speed should be as good as possible. So, if you’re in the top 5% of data users, your speed is reduced only when you are connected to a cell site experiencing high demand. Once you are no longer connected to a site experiencing high demand, your speed will return to normal. This could mean a matter of seconds or hours, depending on your location and time of day."

Source:http://www.verizonwireless.com/news/article/2014/07/network-optimization.html

Also helpful: http://www.verizonwireless.com/support/information/data_disclosure.html

You really won't find a way around this. It seriously has been done before, about 3 years ago when unlimited plans started going the way of the Dodo. I would be upset if I were on an unlimited plan, but I'd also understand that the tools to manage my usage so it doesn't affect me are there and it's worth a shot at changing my habits (allow WiFi when safe/available, set apps to update over WiFi only etc...)instead of wasting my time and resources on trying to "lawyer up" against a multi-billion dollar company with possible multi-millions tied up in lawyers themselves.

Just trying to help.

You're not on contract anymore, you're on month to month which can change with proper notice, which they are doing.

So not everyone on Verizon with unlimited data is off-contract. I'm not. I'm on contract, with a contract price 928, with unlimited LTE. After they made it where any renewals resulted in loss of unlimited, there was/is a loophole. Buy your phone through a third party retailer. I've bought mine thru the Microsoft store and my friend bought thru Best Buy. Both of us never lost our unlimited, and got contracted price phones.
All that said I don't like throttling, and regardless of what they say I can't see how this isn't selective/dynamic throttling.

So this wouldn't affect you or your friend until your contracts are over, you are using the service on a site experiencing high-demand (whatever that means) and you are in the top 5% of users on the network. That is a moving target of course, so I don't know how that works.

This is perfectly reasonable if you ask me. Here in Spain I'd be all over something like that, right now anything over 1GB of data is an extortion; unlimited data is a pipe dream in my world

That and my brother has used more than 10k sms/mms in a month. I still don't understand it, he hates to read but can do over 10k texts in a month.

Ummm, I've hit 12000 call minutes in a month, but only about 2000 sms. AT&T unlimited talk/text + 10 GB shared data for 3 920s = $150/month...

Too bad I love Verizon and they're leagues ahead of anyone when it comes to coverage in central Minnesota. Otherwise I might be upset.

AT&T has great coverage in the Brainard Lakes area.  But, that's just my experience.  Of course, you could be quite aways from there, haha, I'm not sure where you mean in central MN

not true here in italy the company says unlimited internet but they mean 1gb at full speed and after blocked to 2G speed (you can navigate only with opera mini and likewise).

fortunely i have my sim for free with many gb, a good amount of free minute with the same operator and about 150min vs other operator. I pay only for extra min and 4g when i'm covered.

I think he was referring to "your using a lot of data." Should be you're...
Edit: Never mind, I see that you see it :-)

Lol,yes I was :D And you both saw it,hopefully none of you are grammar nazis :p

Yes,I was referring to "your using a lot of data"(which hasn't been edited yet),it was the third line in WPC app and 2nd line on the site :)

Verizon: No, you see, we said it's not throttling.  Nevermind what the definition of throttling is, we said it isn't throttling, therefore its all ok.  Move along, no news here folks.

What's the definition of "throttling?" Definition: "what a lot of customers will want to do to the Verizon executives that made this decision."

Bandwidth throttling is the intentional slowing of Internet service by an Internet service provider. It is a reactive measure employed in communication networks in an apparent attempt to regulate network traffic and minimize bandwidth congestion. Bandwidth throttling can occur at different locations on the network. On a local area network (LAN), a sysadmin may employ bandwidth throttling to help limit network congestion and server crashes. On a broader level, the Internet service provider may use bandwidth throttling to help reduce a user's usage of bandwidth that is supplied to the local network.

Throttling can be used to actively limit a user's upload and download rates on programs such as video streaming, BitTorrent protocols and other file sharing applications, as well as even out the usage of the total bandwidth supplied across all users on the network. Bandwidth throttling is also often used in Internet applications, in order to spread a load over a wider network to reduce local network congestion, or over a number of servers to avoid overloading individual ones, and so reduce their risk of crashing, and gain additional revenue by compelling users on to more expensive pricing schemes where bandwidth is not throttled.

They have the right to do so ? I think they can get a trial because some people have signed for unlimited data , they can't change the terms of the contract just like that.

1. This only affects people "out" of contract. 2. It's still unlimited, they're just going to be slowing the speeds during certain circumstances. They're well with their rights to do this.

I have their 1GB plan for $60/month. It's a little annoying to have to keep track of what I use and my music streaming has become less frequent... But I'm surprised that it's actually enough, thanks to all the public Wi-Fi spots available these days. Of course, that's why the Icon's erratic Wi-Fi behavior is extra annoying. :)

Which I have always found funny because entity it is fair to is the company. If they didn't use rediculous traffic shaping to build networks, it wouldn't be an issue.

I have a coworker with no cable internet because he streams everything from his phone. He uses over 30 GB a month. He won't be happy to hear this.

Does he pay extra for the hotspot feature? If so, he has a right to be pissed. Still, he must be a light user to run his entire house on 30 GB a month. I pay an extra $20 with my cable company just to have my limit up from 300 GB to 999 GB, though it does come with a doubling of speed as well. I was considering upgrading from 50meg to 104 meg, but found out that the monthly cap is still 999 GB, so no reason to upgrade other than to pour water out of my bucket faster.

No, he doesn't pay extra. In fact, he had switched to Windows Phone, but then switched back to his Android because he didn't want to pay the extra for the hotspot feature. I have no idea what all he does online at home, but I know that sometimes he works from home.

So, basically, they are throttling the top 5% off off-contract, unlimited data users. Sounds fair really, although kinda sucks for those top five who were hoping for their unlimited data ride to never end.

They say the top 5%, but that is a market tool for service providers to make it seem like they are in the right.

 

Comcast has been trying to tell us for years that only the top 3% of their users use more than 300GB of data a month (so data capped at 300GB is ok because of that), which is BS because I don't have extremely heavy data usage and I go over or near 300GB every month, same with almost everybody else I know.

 

Basically Verizon is saying "top 5%" when in actuality they are going to be throttling a lot more people than that. Either way it is BS and shouldn't be accepted. People with grandfathered data had to be with Verizon for at least 5-6 years now as they haven't offered that plan since around 2008-2009. Way to reward loyalty, Verizon!

B.S.! I use alot, downloading movies, game, streaming and only once have I gotten close to 250Gb. If you're hitting over 300 then you should get slammed with a cut off.

I don't think you are as much of a power user as you think you are. 300GB in a 30 day period is not a lot. That is 10 GB a day. Netflix alone will burn up a few gigs in a couple hours of streaming. Hell, downloading an Xbox game is going to set you back anywhere from 20-50GB. So say I stream a couple episodes of Breaking Bad, then download Forza 5 on my Xbox.....I have already used up 1/6th of my alloted data for the month, in just a few hours.

 

Got off your high horse, buddy. People like you are the reason cable companies justify setting these absurd limits.

Agreed on all points except maybe the amount used for streaming. I haven't had Netflix though in a long time so I am not sure how optimized they are compared to other services.

Netlix uses a lot of data:

 

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/how-much-monthly-bandwidth-doe-136401

 

Here's the breakdown of the bandwidth:

Netflix Movies (HD): These guys are around 3.8Mbit, which means it's about 3600MB for a 2 hour HD movie.
Netflix Movies (SD): Each of these movies are around 500-700MB each, depending on the length of the movie.
Netflix TV Shows (HD): A 30-minute TV show will be about 1500MB.
Netflix TV Shows (SD): A 30-minute TV show will be about 400MB.

Because my unlimited data plan + 450 minutes a month is $73.00 a month.  A new plan single line plan with unlimited talk & Text plus 2GB of data is $75 a month.  So they are losing money on those people who have been around forever.

No, they're not losing money. That claim is 100% bullshit. They just aren't raping us as badly as the rest.

Settle down Francis and take off your Internet bad guy outfit.  What I meant is that they are losing money in comparison, not that they are losing money as in going into the red.

No, it's not. There is no term of life on the contract. Just a stipulation the customer keeps his end for at least two years, the customer is allowed to bail or not after that. If not, The contract is still ongoing.

Sadly it isn't that hard. It will become even easier as youtube gets higher and higher definition. Part of the issue I have is that I only have wifi available at home. I mean, it is available at work, but it is less than a 2 meg connection for the entire office, so we already struggle at a snails pace.

Its a moving target. As much as people think they use a certain amount reach month, it actually varies.

I'm not too upset about this cause I'm not too affected by it anyway, but my hate for Verizon has been growing exponentially lately just in general. I can't friggin stand the way they feel the need to place their super ugly a$$ logo all over every device, especially on the front of a phone! No one else does this! And that stupid check mark logo is just awful! That's just one thing I hate too. There's plenty other. I wish I could afford to just get out of my contract and move my whole family to AT&T. And that's another thing! At&t already has the cyan update out for the 1520, once again Verizon is last on an update for their icon!

I see your point. But I'd also rather have a device with as many bugs removed as possible instead of a non-working device. I'd say within a month. :) *patiently waiting myself...I feel your pain*

Read the fine print on T-Mo's offer... you have to trade in your phones. Which means buying new phones from their incredible selection.

But my biggest issue with T-Mo is the service sucks. I'm in metro Orange County, California, but can't make a cell call on T-Mo without going outside to do it. With ATT, I have had cell calls that lasted 11-12 hours inside the house... without being dropped.

Verizon wasn't even on my shortlist because of CDMA. After leaving Sprint and not being able to take my phone with me? Any carrier that doesn't allow BYOD (using SIM, not prior use on their service) isn't getting my business.

I'm aware of T-Mobile's offer. Not only do you have to trade in your device, but you have to pay your ETF first and then they pay you back within 2 months. Also, the value they give you for your old phone won't be anywhere near what you think it will be. Lastly...since there is no ETF or contract, there is no subsidized price on the phone... you are paying full retail for it.

The whole "Break-up" with your carrier thing they are doing is clever and all but I think I have a more accurate relationship phrase to sum up this program: "It's complicated." 

We'll technically you still have unlimited data just no protection on the speed to which you download that unlimted data with.   They could have easily said at next contract renewal, unlimted data will be removed, period.

Very true. So I guess it's a trade-off. Which is more important to you...unlimited data with restrictions or tiered data with higher costs?

How?  Unlimited data != unthorttled.

You still can download as-much-as data as you can.  Just not in a timely manner.

Our contracts were for unthrottled. That was the selling point they advertised. These contracts are from when Verizon first got the iPhone and they were trying to steal AT&T customers who had just started throttling their unlimited and why I left AT&T in the first place.

Fine, then let us get the phones at discount again. Been buying off contract phones for two years now. Double dip us at every chance they get. It's almost as if they still charge me an outrageous price for sending a few bytes of text data.

This was only something that would happen in a matter of time. It is unfortunate, but it comes down to data being a resource. It's scarce...as much as unlimited anything would be nice, a network with 100 million customers could no way allow that much through its network. Digital airwaves work much differently than wired connections, as they are designed to handle only so much at any one time. I guess it will be interesting to see what happens.....this is why I switched to tiered dara a long time ago because as much as I don't like it, I hate being throttled or limited on speeds more.

That's more bullshit. It would be a problem if those 100 million were all in one city. They're spread across the country. The bandwidth load you're talking about is only from tower to tower. My usage in Alabama has no effect on the bandwidth in Georgia.

I see your argument...but think about this. Remember 9/11, when all those people at once tried to make calls from their cell phones but couldn't because of the immense traffic? That's what I'm referring to...sorry if I was unclear regarding the whole VZW population. And was all carriers...not just Verizon.

There's already a plan in place for that. All cell traffic gets put down and 911, emergency and rescue gets priority.

AT&T starts throttling at 5 GB. It's definitely a bummer, but a 5 GB plan costs over $70 (I think), and is something like $10 for each 1 GB that you go over. I'll glady take the 5 GB for $30 and no overage charge.

Actually, with ATT, I started w a 1 GB plan since I spend most of my time on WiFi. A few months ago, ATT offered 10 GB bump at no additional charge.

Right now, paying $150/month for 3 920s w unlimited calls/text + 10 GB data.

This is infuriating. I have paid full price for all my phones to keep my unlimited data. I have had unlimited data since Alltel was acquired by Verizon. Now they want to change the rules just for more money. Might be time for a change. I have been eyeing the Lumia 1520 anyways.

How are you being forced to pay more? Where did unlimited go? Still got it right?
Not one person here has been affected by this YET and everyone is outraged. Use your data hut use it more wisely.
Drive as fast as you want on the freeway but don't cause issues for everyone else. I think its a simple request. Remember when the iPhone came out and it brought AT&Ts network to a standstill, and then it affected Verizon's? This is what they are trying to prevent. You still have unlimited. You still pay the same amount. No one is taking that away.

Oh, and yes, they want to make money. But they aren't making it off of you anymore than they already were. That's where my paying for tiered data comes in.

Everyone that said it's against your contract... You don't have one. Your contract expired, They could give you 30 days notice and drop it on the month to month agreement you are on. So be happy you still have unlimited.

Exactly. They are saying "here are the new terms. Take it or leave it." There's no breach of contract here.

Wrong. The contract is still in effect. The two years is just a stipulation you are required to uphold on your end. They have to maintain their end of it for however long you choose to keep it unless there's a set time limit of validation on the contract as a whole. There isn't one.

I think everyone is forgetting the most important part of the statement.

"only when connecting to a cell site when it is experiencing heavy demand."

That doesn't meant that the top 5% of data users are going to be throttled once they hit a data limit, but only when using data hungry applications on specific cell towers during times of high congestion. So like the article says, it's pretty specific as far as the situation goes, and the chances of it happening seem pretty low.

They couldn't. There's a reason why they're dodging around the word, "throttling." Looks like they finally decided to go to court to try to get rid of us.

Its such a small change and being a person who didn't have a smartphone during the unlimited period you should be lucky Verizon doesn't make you pay $70 + $160 to share 4gbs.

Yup typical VZW move. They did it to 3G and said if you purchased a 4G device they would lift the optimization. Now they are doing it to 4G... I am just going to stream as much as I can out of principle. I only used 5 GB last month. And with bit rate music at 128 now that is easy to do.

This has been happening on AT&T for years I had 3 devices grandfathered into unlimited data. Finally switched it all over to a share plan 15gb for 3 phones

Hey how are the top 1% supposed to keep getting richer if they can't keep increasing the rates they get from their top 5% of users.
I here they are going to be offering a special promotion to any of those users affected that want to change their data plans... They are going to offer a free bottle of lube to make the "transition" easier. ;)

I knew they would find a way to stick it to the people who where still under the unlimited data plan. It was only a matter of time.

This happened in NZ and the carrier lost in court and had to honour everyone's contracts and grandfather the unlimited plans

Sadly NZ law is different than USA law. Also, while I don't know about NZ, the USA is a government of the company, for the company, and by the company... or is it bought by the company?

Maybe I'm not using my cellphone enough, because the amounts of data some of you are quoting is far beyond anything I've ever used. I'm lucky if I get to 7GB data and 10 GB WI-FI a month. If I really push it, I may make it to 10 GB data and 15 GB Wi-FI, but I can honestly count in one hand the ammount of times I've done that.

The bandwidth of LTE is significantly more than CDMA revA and cheaper to maintain. Back in the 3G congestion days I thought throttling made sense. The top users that were abusing the 5GB data and being throttled was a necessary evil to ensure that other 3G user got their share.this is corporate greed at its finest. They can easily scale the resources they need to accommodate unlimited data for the less than 5% client base that still has it, they just want to make as much money as possible because the execs aren't happy with two houses in the hamptons and only one measely lot and two vineyards in the Loire Valley

Three UK offer unlimited 3g and 4g with a 'fair usage' of 1000GB including tethering I think we need this mobile network to launch in America

WTF....i paid 600$ for my icon so I could keep my unlimited data plan....T- mobile, here I come......... That is, if they get the next flagship

How is that NOT "throttling?".... Just because you set up parameters that only effect a certain group does not change the definition of throttling. Yes, Verizon you most surely ARE "throttling" by every definition of the word. Throttling is throttling.

I just left AT&T with unlimited data, but I was only using 2-4 GB the whole time. I got my Icon of Craigslist and joined Verizon and got the 10 GB plan at a discount, since I owned the phone outright.
In my case, I am saving money than the unlimited plan on AT&T and I could save even more if I went to 6 or 8 GB. I do understand what those of you are going threw on the unlimited plan, as AT&T tried forever to take mine away. Any excuse they could think of to eliminate it, they tried. I just got sick and tired of fighting it, plus since I wasn't using that much data, it really didn't matter. AT&T did however honor the unlimited plan every time I renewed, but if I wanted to alter the plan, they wanted to say that would take me off the unlimited plan.

Guess I may fall into the top 5%. My average data usage over the last 6 months is 24.6 gb. In July for the first half of this billing cycle, I've already topped 64 gb. A lot of that was thru my mobile hotspot.

How to renew your contract, get a new phone, and not lose unlimited: 1) Add a new line with a $10/month dumb phone. 2) transfer your upgrade from your unlimited line to your dumb phone to buy a new phone under 2 year contract. This will extend your contract on your unlimited by 2 years. 3) throw away SIM car that comes with new phone and use your existing unlimited line SIM card. 4) repeat for all unlimited lines 5) I keep my dumb line but I suppose you can cancel once done.