Friday, January 13, 2017

For heavy unlimited data customers, life just got harder. AT&T and Verizon are clamping down on their heaviest users. Does this play into T-Mobile's narrative about greedy carriers?

CNET reports:
Depending on who you ask, this is either a new age for unlimited data or the end of a really good ride.

Verizon and AT&T are playing hardball with legacy unlimited data customers, people who signed up for all-you-can-eat data in the early days when it was cheap, and never gave it up. AT&T said on Tuesday that it would raise the rates on those customers by $5 a month.

The same day, Verizon said it was going after anyone who uses 200 gigabytes of data -- equivalent to roughly 250 hours of high-definition streaming video -- and forcing them to either move to a new tiered plan or face disconnection.

The timing couldn't be worse. The moves come just a week after T-Mobile CEO John Legere got on stage at a CES press conference in Las Vegas to trumpet the company's mission to get everyone using unlimited. Legere went on his usual rant about greedy carriers "screwing" customers over, and AT&T and Verizon clamping down on unlimited data fuels that narrative. It doesn't hurt that this comes at a time when consumers are more aware of how much data they consume.
Are times changing? Stay tuned.