AT&T to offer incentives to those cutting back on data use?

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AT&T to offer incentives to those cutting back on data use?
Recently we reported that AT&T Wireless CEO and President Ralph de la Vega suggested that the carrier might raise prices for those 3% of its customers that are using 40% of the bandwidth. Today's Wall Street Journal reports that AT&T is now thinking about offering incentives to those datahogs to try to get them to take things down a notch or two. Will this end up like the Opec Oil Embargo of the mid 70's? Will AT&T use odd and even zip code numbers to determine who can browse the web on any given day? Can the carrier even develop an incentive plan that would slow down the usage of data intensive applications? What would your carrier need to offer you to make you power down your handset?

source: WSJ via BGR

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25 Comments

24. tonyc_42

Posts: 61; Member since: Aug 18, 2009

i think the fcc will have something to say about this ridiculous idea

21. krypticsoul

Posts: 12; Member since: Dec 18, 2009

Im jumping ship!!!

19. rwolf1984

Posts: 536; Member since: Jun 06, 2009

this is just embarrassing for AT&T. . . This is the burden for AT&T to have the bragging rights that they have more smartphones on there network than any other carrier. AT&T needs to get it together so they can stay competitive. Encouraging customers not to use their product isnt a solution. You want your customers relying on their phones using the data and features so they get the most out of them and have the best customer experience. AT&T needs to get it together or I'll switch.

16. waldensdead

Posts: 1; Member since: Dec 18, 2009

I sell phones all day and for the past two months, all I hear is "What's better, the iPhone or the Droid?" Eventually, you don't even think about the answer, you just spout out a bunch of tech specs and tell them to hit the net for research. I personally have the 32gb S, and believe it or not, I'm almost outta storage. Data limit? Hell no! I agree that people who only use a little shouldn't have to pay the same $30 I do, but I would never agree to a data limit. It's hard enough having to explain to customers how you can get unlimited data on a phone for $30, but yoy pay $60 for 5gb on a computer (wether it's tethering or a broadband card). I hope this doesn't turn into the braodband plans of the past, where you could have the Grandfathered unlimited data, but you'd be forced to buy the equipment outright. There's no way I'm paying $30 for a limited plan, so AT&T better kick the network up a notch.

14. ajpinton

Posts: 4; Member since: Dec 18, 2009

I have an iPhone 3G and my wife has a blackberry 8110. I keep up with our data usage and every month my wife blows me out of the water on data and I live and work in a 3G network using wifi only at home. AT&T dose not offer anthing for smart phone less the unlimited plans, so what do thay expect. I would love a lower data plan let's say 5GB for $15, and why you still play $30 for a data plan on a 4 year old 2G blackberry is beyond me. So I think offering less bandwith for the older phones, and more choices for the rest of them is the solutin. P.S. If yo want to teather it $60 a month on all smartphones with a 5GB cap.

12. CRICKETownz

Posts: 980; Member since: Oct 24, 2009

Damn...all those uppity, trendy AT&T customers that ride around with a cocky attitude b/c they are carrying the iPhone. So let me get this straight, you offer an unlimited plan but then you say "Well let's keep the usage to a minimum so others can enjoy it too"? How backwards is that? That's like purchasing a brand new shiny Cadillac Escalade complete with navigational system, 22" rims, a bangin sound system...but no engine. I bet Apple, Inc. is slitting their wrists right about now for deciding to get in bed with AT&T. And I notice that all the AT&T flunkies that usually frequent Phonearena.com don't have much to say about this little delimna. Wow, Verizon Wireless must be lookin more and more like the number one carrier each quarter...and it seems (even tho it is still a motorola) the DROID is the number one selling gadget of the year in its 2 month shelf-life... Mmm...mmm..mmm...

13. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

Lmao wait a minute...number one selling device of the year? Lol. Ok call me a fanboy if u want I'll tell u I have a droid too. But number one? Hell no. The iPhone has sold 10 million this last quarter. Whereas the droid, which has sold fantastically, has only reached a million plus. iPhone 3gs sold 1 million the day it was released and it wasn't even the first iPhone. Not a even a real improvement. Like a point 5 upgrade. Droid is wonderful. But the iPhone has the selling power that no other individual handset, nor most manufacturers can touch regardless of it's many flaws.

15. CRICKETownz

Posts: 980; Member since: Oct 24, 2009

The iPhone as a device itself...i don't think has too many flaws unless you call lack of being able to tether it to a laptop to connect to internet a flaw. As far as anything else I think that the iPhone is pretty nice BUT i guess the flaws would point more to AT&T's network support such as lack of picture messaging, ridiculous data connectivity, and supposedly excessive dropped calls but most consumers' definitions of dropped calls is highly exaggerated. Two dropped calls in a day doesn't warrant bad service but that's another tangent. The DROID is alright...don't really care for the design too much, but let me rephrase my previous statement. Time Magazine rated the DROID as the number one gadget of the year and to say that at the end of the year says a lot, even tho I don't care too much for any Motorola device except for maybe a beeper.

18. DroidMasterK

Posts: 3; Member since: Dec 10, 2009

Keep in mind that although the M-word is scary for most people, Motorola is under new management, production and quality assurance has been revamped, and the DROID is the first major offering by the new Motorola. This is the new standard; Motorola has set the bar high from the getgo this time, and so far so good. No, I'm not a Motorola enthusiast. In fact, if you had told me a year ago I would willingly put down my BlackBerry for a Motorola device, I would've punched you in the mouth and been like wtf. Not funny. But now I have my DROID on my network that can support my Ferrari like I'm on the Autobahn, instead of a network that sets their Ferraris' governors to 25mph and tells their customers they can only drive in a school zone.... I'm a happy camper.

9. Iphoneisthesuck

Posts: 59; Member since: Oct 13, 2009

Eventhough the plan is "unlimited" there are technicalities. Just like the unlimited nights and weekends......they are unlimited but to a point. If you could endlessly eat...and went to an all you can eat buffet....you would eventually be told to stop eatting, because....well....youre a pig and its not practical for the business to provide unlimited food for 1 person or 100. Same thing with ATT. They says its unlimited data, but they are considering customers to be using the network responsbily. No matter what network you are on, how fast the network is, or how many fan boys there are...if that network has a data hog of a phone, there will be problems and so so solutions.

11. deago78

Posts: 172; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

What kind of all you can eat buffets have you been to where you've ever seen someone being told to stop eating. In fact have you ever even heard personally of such a story. You cannot be an all you can eat buffet and limit how much someone can eat. It's a direct contradiction. Just like providing an unlimited data plan and limiting the amount of data one can download.

20. Phoney

Posts: 13; Member since: Aug 16, 2009

What?! Who hasn't heard of the buffet story?! "You go home now, fatboy! You been here four hour! You frighten my wife! You eat more than killer whale! Sign say 'All you can eat' not 'You eat all'!"

22. Hotzb22

Posts: 109; Member since: Mar 30, 2009

lmao

25. Illyich

Posts: 167; Member since: Oct 13, 2009

Unlimited does not actually mean unlimited. On any carrier. Period. It covers the usage for most consumers just fine. But it is technically possible to use 56,000 night & weekend minutes in a month, even though there aren't that many night and weekend minutes in a month. Do that sometime, on an unlimited night & weekend plan, and see what your carrier says to you.

7. JeffdaBeat unregistered

Thing is, they aren't abusing the system. AT&T told people they have unlimited data and that 3% is using what they were told they can have for $30 a month. AT&T should have given a 5GB cap on the iPhones from the start if they couldn't handle the data. They could go back on that unlimited plan, but it would give people something else to be pissed about. I say make $30 the unlimited plan and give some of us who aren't constantly on AT&T's 3G network a price break. I keep my phone on EDGE to save on battery. The speed doesn't bother me and to be honest, there is always free wifi available where I am. So make my data plan $15 or $20 if I stay under 5GB of data.

6. Kiltlifter

Posts: 742; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

Why would you give an incentive to an abuser of your services? "Oh honey if you please stop beating me I will let you humiliate me publicly... How's that sound?" Why don't they just throttle their usage a bit, like instead of letting them browse at the 7.2, cap it to 3.6, that will half the usage of the heavy users (in theory anyways). Let them keep their unlimited, but don't let them prevent others from enjoying the same privileges... It is like public smoking, I could care less that you smoke, I care that you smoking right next to me is literally harming my body. So the other 97% of AT&T subscribers should be allowed to punch the 3% that use all the data and make AT&Ts network a punching bag for VZW... How's that for an incentive?

10. deago78

Posts: 172; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

Abuser? Really? I'm an AT&T subscriber and even I think that is a ridiculous statement. We aren't abusing anything. We pay for unlimited data. Unlimited means we could each download an exabyte of data if we so choose. This is no one's fault but AT&T. That is why they are giving us an incentive to lower our use as opposed to a threat of negative consequences.

5. Mateo8326

Posts: 472; Member since: Jul 15, 2009

Excuse me let me get this straight ATT is trying to give people an incentive to slow down the usage of running data with them?

4. paintballguy113

Posts: 16; Member since: Sep 29, 2008

I could completely stop using there data network if they like. My incentive? They pay for the cancellation fee for my contract with them.

17. DroidMasterK

Posts: 3; Member since: Dec 10, 2009

Yes! Then come join us on a network that doesn't look like a bunch of lakes!

2. vzwman

Posts: 385; Member since: Oct 26, 2009

The solution is simple ppl switch carrier

3. deejay52420

Posts: 29; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

How is that a solution?

8. VZWEMP

Posts: 158; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

How isn't that a solution?

23. whocares

Posts: 235; Member since: Dec 19, 2009

who wants a $300 etf

1. jrg11

Posts: 65; Member since: Jun 12, 2009

Guys, your data usage is at a 10....we could use you at a 2 /Boiler Room'd

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