FCC inquires on Verizon’s plans for “network optimization” and slowing data speeds in some instances

FCC inquires on Verizon’s plans for “network optimization” and slowing data speeds in some instances
Tom Wheeler, FCC Chairman, wrote a letter to Verizon questioning the carrier’s plans to slow connection speeds of customers with legacy unlimited data plans during peak demand periods on the network.

In the letter, Wheeler wrote, “It is disturbing to me that Verizon Wireless would base its ‘network management’ on distinctions among its customers’ data plans, rather than on network architecture or technology.”

Verizon has not offered a full response yet, but has stated the planned “network optimization” practice is limited in scope, and has already stated that it is not a true “throttling” such as what other carriers do on their networks. The carrier said it will provide a full response to the Chairman’s inquiry.

What is odd though is that Wheeler asked Verizon to explain the logic behind treating customers differently based on a given subscriber’s data plan when it is an industry practice. AT&T and T-Mobile do the same thing, and in the former's case, it is ostensibly for the same reason, though the throttling is arguably more severe than what Verizon has planned. This is also the first time the FCC has made such an inquiry.

source: re/code

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