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AT&T unlimited data top 5% question

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by Thiat302, Dec 20, 2011.

  1. Thiat302

    Thiat302 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Got the text this am- did a data usage check last night at 8:51 and it came back with 3560.4- magically i used almost 300mb while it was on the charger overnight- did a data check this morning at 7:04 and i used 3838.6- i want to know where those 300mb went- this is crazy- And when is less than 4gb the top 5% of users? I know a lot of unlimited people used massive data amounts, but when Im using less than an offered data package (4gb) I should not be in the top 5%- anyone know what the trigger amount is?

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  2. patch321

    patch321 Well-Known Member

    hmmm have you checked how often ur accounts are refreshing? as for me....i am the 95% :D
  3. NativeTxn

    NativeTxn Well-Known Member

    Not sure if there is a specific amount across the board. I've heard that it is the top 5% of users in your area, which could obviously vary from city to city. I've heard some say that it is the top 5% nationwide.

    After I upgraded to the SR and transferred my unlimited, the billing cycle ended a few days later so I logged into my account to make sure it was done correctly. When I used "Manage Features" It showed 6 LTE plans (all the tiered ones) but not an unlimited. None of the tiered were bubbled in though. When I selected the current features the first one showed an unlimited LTE data plan for $30.00. When I checked the recent usage it showed 297.66 of 10238976 used.

    If I click on the "?" by Data in the Recent Usage area, it says that I am on "the 10238976 MB data plan" and if I go over, "an additional 1 KB will be automatically added at a cost of $null."

    This was all very perplexing so I called AT&T Customer Care. She confirmed that I definitely had unlimited data. She went on to inform me though that if I used too much data that they could slow my speeds down. Now take this next part with a grain of salt, as it was a CSR, and I am pretty sure that she is incorrect, however, she said (and I am paraphrasing slightly) "the limit after which your speeds can be slowed, which I think is around 2 GB, is based on the top iPhone users because they feel that is a pretty good amount of data to use."

    She then went on to tell me that she had never seen it before where it said ___ out of 10238976 used (or some other random number). She said that maybe that was what they had determined put you in the top 5% of users. I did not bother to tell her that per the conversion calculations on AT&T's website (1,024 MB = 1 GB), that would mean that I could use 9,999 GBs of data in a billing cycle before I hit the top 5%.

    Finally, when I dial *3282#, it says that I have used "__ of unlimited" data. So, I am confident that I am on unlimited LTE data (as the icon at the top says 4G LTE and I get LTE speeds when that icon is on), but that is pretty much all I am confident about with respect to all of the AT&T unlimited LTE data plan nonsense.

    So, I do not know what the limit is (though I agree with you that I would think it should at least be quite a bit over their top tiered plan of 4 GB), and I'm not sure the above helps. Just thought it was interesting.
  4. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    Ok guys, I have been trying to think of a way to sticky a thread about this as we have several discussions going on this at XDA...

    There really isn't a good way for me to organize it (yet)

    There is no magic number. There are a few issues present that we have here as consumers.

    The limit is top 5% in your area

    1. There are no metrics given to the consumer providing any point of reference for your area.
    2. This is based on a rolling limit. If you are in the top 5% on your 2nd day of your billing cycle for your area, you could receive a warning and further use and you can be throttle, that early

    There is absolutely nothing that anyone has found to get around this contractually. Technically you still have data, just not the advertised speeds (which carry a disclaimer)

    On the software side there is a work around that appears to be working. It is only available to root users on specific roms.

    More details to come.
  5. NativeTxn

    NativeTxn Well-Known Member

    Is it based on the top 5% from the last cycle period, or is it based on a daily basis?

    In other words, if you were at the top 5% on day 3 of your cycle, and got throttled on day 4, but on day 7 you were outside the top 5%, would you be unthrottled until you got back into the top 5%?

    Or is it once you're throttled for a cycle, you're throttled for the whole cycle?
  6. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    It is based on current usage in the area (which makes no sense as everyone has different billing dates)

    you are not unthrottled until the beginning of your next bill cycle.
  7. ADRz

    ADRz Member

    If you are updating overnight twitter, facebook and a good number of email accounts, this would account for your data use. So, stop the automatic updates and syncing with those accounts or restrict your web use.
  8. Thiat302

    Thiat302 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    My data ends the 24th- all my accounts aren't push so they don't update over night... Today with a full day of usage (12 hrs) I only used around 45mb- and that includes numerous YouTube videos, email, and Facebook... Just weird..
  9. J0hnga1t

    J0hnga1t Lurker

    I got a text at 5:15am one morning from AT&T. They said I was in the top 5% of users and that they were capping my speeds. I checked my usage and it was only 2.3gbs...I went to an AT&T store and the person checked my phone and he said I used 34gbs. I think he was pointing at the wrong number....well I got my monthly bill and my usage for the billing cycle was only 4.3 gb....sad.....makes me want to just use my phone on 4g and not my wifi just to be a data hog.
  10. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    Month 2 ...got the warning text at 3.79 gb ...19 days into our billing cycle. Right after using slingbox to watch the first half of a football game.
  11. J0hnga1t

    J0hnga1t Lurker

    Got a text last night. AT&T - I'm approaching the top 5% of users, consider using wifi. My usage? 1.3mb and 11 days into the billing cycle. DAMN YOU AT&T.
  12. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    Responses are coming in to FCC complaints

    Solution. .change to a tiered data plan and pay for what you use.

  13. NativeTxn

    NativeTxn Well-Known Member

    In my opinion, if they are going to continue to throttle those on unlimited LTE plans, then they should: (1) make it standardized across the nation, and (2) be more clear about where the 5% lies and/or stipulate how close you are when you receive the "warning text."

    With respect to (1), you should not be penalized for living in a more remote area where usage patterns might be lighter (i.e. top 5% is a lower GB amount) than in larger cities (where they would probably be higher in general). Conversely, you should not be rewarded simply because you live in a larger area where data usage is likely higher. Granted, this will not come into play until AT&T's LTE is spread across more of the country. But the point is that it should be a nationwide standard as opposed to a "your area" standard.

    With regard to (2), the way the response from AT&T reads, they could send you the text telling you you are approaching the top 5%, when you are in the top 5.1% and then throttle you later that day or the next day and technically, they have "notified [you] as [your] usage approache[d] the top 5% of heaviest data users and before [you] experience[d] a change in speed." However, you didn't have much of a chance to alter your usage behavior...

    The reason I say this is because it seems that a lot of the posts I've read seem to be saying that they got the notice VERY shortly before they reached the 5%, and that they were throttled within 24 hours.

    Maybe they should send you the text when you hit the top 10%, which would actually give you a chance to change your data usage behavior during that billing period before getting into the top 5% and being throttled.

    In the future (because of the seemingly inconsistent way that they are handling the throttling), I wouldn't be surprised to see some sort of class action lawsuit alleging that customers who are subject to the same contracts (i.e. we all sign basically the same 2-year agreement, and presumably those that buy their phones outright are still subject to throttling even if they are on a month-to-month contract) are being treated differently under those contracts (i.e. the top 5% being "by area" as opposed to a nationwide standard).

    While the contract implies that they can throttle your speeds if you are using too much data, they do not specifically say what their policy is with regard to throttling (e.g. how the 5% is calculated, how long before you reach the top 5% do you receive the warning, etc.), which is generally not a great position to be in if you are the drafter of what is basically a take-it-or-leave it contract.

    Even if there wasn't much money from a class action that went to customers, part of the settlement could also be that they have to be clear on their policy, notify all unlimited LTE customers at the beginning of their billing cycle what will constitute 5% for that billing cycle (since it is allegedly based on the prior period's usage), define what the start and end of each period is on which they base the top 5% calculation (since everyone has different billing cycle dates), they have to provide at least "5%" worth of notice (i.e. notify when you reach top 10%) so that you have a decent chance to make efforts to avoid being throttled, and things of that nature. In other words, they may get to keep the ability to throttle unlimited plans, but they have to actually have some consistency to the process for all AT&T customers.

    To a certain extent, I'm sure that the above may be a pipe dream.

    Regardless, I suspect they will do everything they can not to give in considering the $4 billion hit they are taking for the failed merger and the fact that they want to get rid of as many unlimited plans as possible to make more money with their tiered plans.

    Sorry for the rant/ramble...
  14. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    I appreciate the rant. I am looking into solutions but as of right now I don't have the resources to find out anything about or initiate a class action

    I have a dealing that once the appropriate powers that be realize the vagueness involved along with the severety of the throttle that the throttle issue will go away.

    I mean hell. . I remember a time when I paid for text and minutes on an each basis..but then again...they have those tiered too
  15. NativeTxn

    NativeTxn Well-Known Member

    Not to worry - if there truly is some sort of case to be had (and based on some of the ridiculous cases that have been filed in the past, there probably is) there are likely already attorneys looking into it; and at worst, they soon will be.

    What is odd to me is that nobody at AT&T seems to be denying, or trying to hide, the fact that they are going to throttle certain LTE unlimited plan users; therefore, I do not know why they do not just go ahead and put things in writing so that everyone will know how they will enforce it.

    It seems that that putting something (as in specifics about what will constitute top 5%, how it is calculated, whether or not it is calculated based on a nationwide area or "local" areas, etc. - not just "we will throttle those who are in the top 5% of data users") in writing would save them a lot of headaches on multiple fronts - (1) fewer direct complaints/questions that they have to deal with, (2) fewer indirect complaints (i.e. through the FCC, BBB, etc.) that they have to deal with, and (3) there is less likelihood that someone might file a class action if they make it clear what they are doing and how they are doing it.

    Even if it was in writing, people might still think it is BS, but at least everyone will have consistent (hopefully?!) information about the throttle policy. Right now, it seems that you can get 10 different answers by talking to 10 different people (like the CSR who told me that she thought the top 5% was around 2 GB of usage and that it was based on iPhone users because they thought that the top iPhone users were a pretty good guage).

    And who knows...maybe if they start telling us what they plan to do/put in writing prior to doing it, public outcry might make them change their minds about the specifics (see: Bank of America's Planned $5 Debit Card Fee Fiasco).

    On a somewhat related note, does Verizon throttle those that are grandfathered into unlimited LTE plans?
  16. Thiat302

    Thiat302 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    My solution will be to cancel my family plan and roll with Sprint for truly unlimited data... LTE doesn't bother me because I don't get it here anyways..
  17. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    sprints data is 70% slower than att in my area

    I just left them over it.

    Verizon throttles but I don't know the cap...I believe it is 5gb on Verizon and T-Mobile
  18. milan03

    milan03 Android Enthusiast

    Absolutely not. Verizon doesn't throttle their LTE users at any point. You could be using 100GB a month and you will never get throttled. However, they do throttle their 3G EVDO users.

    It's unbelievably ******ed to throttle LTE users at the same (unknown) point as HSPA+ users. I had Skyrocket for a few weeks, LTE just became available in NYC on the 1st, and I started testing, on the 2nd of December, after 2.3GB of usage I received a warning message. It was a day 4 of my billing cycle. The next day I returned Skyrocket.
    Happy with HSPA+ with Galaxy Nexus. No Carrier IQ, and so far no throttling.
  19. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    Be careful with absolutes ;)

    I did mention not knowing the criteria, and they do throttle....just not LTE(yet)

    For anyone that cares to do more reading on Verizon's policy (which does appear to be a not more fair)
    As of Yesterday Verizon Started Throttling its Top 5% Data Hogs, Doesn’t Affect 4G LTE or Tiered Data Customers – Droid Life
  20. milan03

    milan03 Android Enthusiast

  21. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    Att throttles all users in the top 5%

    There is no simple as that. It is two different carriers with two different policies.

    Att T-Mobile and Verizon all three throttle users ...each with their own criteria.
    Keep in mind this criteria may and pretty much will change. Reading through the articles there are strong rumors that Verizon will throttle lte users in the future. Will it happen? No one knows. Truth be told it is doubtful that Matt's current policy will stick. Is it ridiculous...yes. you and I both know the lte network can handle the bandwidth.
    The answer I gave was in fact truth, though admittedly incomplete.

    I am ecstatic that you enjoy your choice to get the nexus but am lost on why you insist on trolling the Skyrocket threads doing little more than bragging. It isn't helpful at all
    If you want to discus it further pm me.
  22. milan03

    milan03 Android Enthusiast

    I have no problem with the Skyrocket, I think it's the best LTE offering on the network, but I have a problem with AT&T throttling at random numbers, and not being transparent with their own customers about what that throttling point actually is.
    How can we successfully manage the usage if they throttle as low as 2GB?
  23. Mr. Ed

    Mr. Ed Extreme Android User

    I agree 100%. i want to say another was recently throttled at less than that.

    Interestingly enough....i still have not been throttled after getting my warning for this month. i am going to watch some slingbox tomorrow and I guaranty you I get throttled imediately after.

    Streaming services seem to be triggering it in many cases
  24. Mach5jeep

    Mach5jeep Lurker

    I found this thread via google and thought I would share my experience.

    I have the grandfathered unlimited plan and AT&T has throttled my internet speed down to 150kbps because I am "in the top 5% of users in the area." This absolutely cripples any streaming process you may want to do. I spoke with customer care who referred me to a "special department" who handles this issue. The person I spoke to refused to remove the cap, refused to let me out of my contract, refused to give me her employee ID, and refused to let me speak to a manager. She kept repeating the same phrase " we didn't limit your data when just slowed your speed. But you still have unlimited wi-fi access." That's funny because speed is measured in bytes and if you limit the speed in which I can move these bytes you also limit my data. The two are intrinsically linked. You can't limit one without the limiting the other. And when I mentioned that the "free wifi" she alluded to was coming from my router that is connected to the Uverse service I PAY for and is therefore NOT FREE she became absolutely silent. The phone is great though....sigh. :mad:
  25. Midiman

    Midiman Well-Known Member

    I dunno. I just don't treat my phone as a multimedia entertainment device except under very limited and controlled circumstances. I don't want to be stuck in an airport, unable to send a text saying I've been held over for 6 hours because my battery went dead streaming video. Things may have gotten better but my streaming video experience has never been particularly good anyway. If I want to watch a video on my phone, I do it where I can be plugged in and I have the video stored on my phone. I always carry a dozen or so with me. I also carry a 64G iTouch... which I can watch in airports all day until the battery dies... and then I can still use my phone for calls and I haven't ticked off the data monitors. I don't appeciate network overload caused by a ton of 16 year olds streaming YouTube "fail" videos all day. FAIL!

Samsung Galaxy S2 Skyrocket Forum

The Samsung Galaxy S2 Skyrocket release date was November 2011. Features and Specs include a 4.5" inch screen, 8MP camera, 1GB RAM, Snapdragon S3 processor, and 1850mAh battery.

November 2011
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