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AT&T announces "Sponsored Data" program to ease your data bill

Posted: , by Michael H.

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AT&T announces
AT&T has just announced its "Sponsored Data" program, which is aiming to ease your data bill by getting content providers to pay the bill. If this sounds familiar, it's because a similar plan has been used by ISPs for a while now. On the surface, this sounds like a good idea, but given the way ISPs have been dealing with charging for data, we are a bit suspicious of just how this will end up playing out.

The idea is that content providers would pay AT&T for the bandwidth usage on media rather than users footing the bill. Given that one of the first partners on the program is an ad agency, we would hope that advertisements would be the first step in the program; meaning you wouldn't be charged for the data used when watching a movie trailer or ad that precedes a YouTube video. The other possibility would be that content service providers like Spotify could join the program to give a service an advantage over competitors by offering zero data cap hit to customers. 

The way this plan is worded makes it a bit less suspicious, but it is always good to be cautious. The big trouble here is that if more and more ad companies get in on the plan, it could mean a lot more advertisements. Getting content providers like YouTube or Netflix on board would be the best option for users, but the value to those companies is unclear, because removing their services from data caps would just add more stress to their servers. It's hard to say if Google would see it as valuable enough to get more eyeballs on ads, but Netflix likely wouldn't see any reason to join. 

source: AT&T

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posted on 06 Jan 2014, 13:55 6

1. hellonerds (Posts: 334; Member since: 27 Aug 2013)

Ehh. .. 5 more months I'll be going back to tmo.. good bye for good att. Been with you since iphone 1...I will not miss you. . This is why I bought a tmo note 3 to use with att till my contract is over .. 70$ unlimited not have to worry about anything

posted on 06 Jan 2014, 14:11

2. deeson22 (Posts: 4; Member since: 06 Jan 2014)

Yea,but you will have less signal with T-Mobile,i am a AT&T customer with a Note III and i love it,4G is faster than my Home Wifi,and i have 30Gb coming in,AT&T is and always will be the Best Carrier Out there,and when you have used 3GB of Data with T-mobile they cut you down to 2G/EDGE i Bet you will enjoy that,AT&T's customer service is in=impecable As long as you pay your bill ontime they will bend over Backwards to help you,A true carrier that is in it to keep you happy,at least they do me,and several others that i know on AT&T,i have Friends on T-Mobile and all they do is complain about the sevice,the signal,and when they call they cannot get anything done,FYI....

posted on 06 Jan 2014, 14:23 2

3. Cdowd85 (Posts: 16; Member since: 06 Aug 2013)

Not to start an argument but please enlighten me where you read that you get throttled down on the 70 dollar tmo plan? Yes they throttle on the 50 and 60 dollar plans but not the 70. People need to do a little research before they go off on something they obviously don't know. I use tmobile I'm on the 70 dollar plan. I use roughly 40gigs a month using Netflix, Hulu, torrent etc never once have I been "throttled" down to edge.

posted on 06 Jan 2014, 14:59 1

4. Augustine (Posts: 1043; Member since: 28 Sep 2013)

Instead of fighting for the customer, AT&T sticks it to him yet again.

posted on 06 Jan 2014, 20:27

5. sun0066 (Posts: 174; Member since: 12 Feb 2011)

I was an att customer but I got tired to be looking all the time how much data I had used , now I am a happy t mobile customer and I don't have to look my data usage any more and the signal is perfect , at least in the Miami area , so viva t mobile!!!!

posted on 06 Jan 2014, 21:55

6. clevername (Posts: 1436; Member since: 11 Jul 2008)

Sorry att, after your customer service dropped to the toilet (I paid ontime always) and price rose through the roof, I had to leave. This won't pull me back. But tmo better start improving service. Idk why atts edge can stream media, but tmo's edge cant even pull a Facebook refresh.

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