AT&T stops its unlimited data plan, throttles its top 5% users

On January 18, 2012

There is no such thing as unlimited especially when it comes to data plans. Apparently, AT&T users will be experiencing this first hand as AT&Thad recently removed its data plans but allowed its current users to continue. However, now those that are still subscribed to the unlimited data plans will have their speeds throttled if they are considered in the top 5% data users.

The throttling of the data speed was done to a very low level. In fact, certain people said that the speeds had been reduced as drastically as to 2G speeds. A report done by App Advice said that the speed can go as low as 0.06Mbps as compared with the normal non-throttled speeds of 1Mbps. In terms of uploading speeds on the other hand, the two remained comparatively the same at 0.5Mbps and 0.70Mbps. In addition to that, the ping time remained quite similar at 100ms or so.

Applications that use data heavily such as Safari or Maps were rendered unusable when the user experienced throttled speeds. However, applications that use data minimally such as Whatsapp or so can still be used although the user would lose the ability of sending data with ease. For the users that relies on web usage a lot, it could be a turn off and users may potentially switch to a carrier with better plan.