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All posts tagged "data"

Thursday, March 1, 2012

AT&T Explains Changes to Throttling Procedures

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 12:25 PM

"Anyone hoping for some truly unlimited "unlimited" plans is still out of luck, but AT&T has announced some changes (or a clarification, as it puts it) to its throttling procedures today that will at least give you a bit more room to work with."

Basically, if you are on an unlimited plan with a 3G phone, you get full data up to 3GB, but then you get throttled down until the next billing cycle. If on a 4G, then you get 5GB to use before the throttling begins. This has no effect on the tiered data plans, only the unlimited ones.

Monday, November 21, 2011

It Appears AT&T Wins the Download War

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 05:30 AM

"People seem to have a love-hate relationship with AT&T. On one hand, people love to bitch and moan about the crappy reception they have with Ma Bell, yet there was curiously no exodus of subscribers when the iPhone came to Verizon and subsequently Sprint."

Perhaps Verizon doesn't care since they are focusing on their 4G network? Whatever the reason, it appears from the charta above that AT&T does indeed have the fastest network speed when compared to Verizon and Sprint. I thought it was rather weird they found that voice quality when Sprint iPhone user was calling was best and when AT&T iPhone user was listening they had better quality. Answering calls use AT&T, making calls use Sprint?

Tags: data, network, speed, at&t

Friday, September 30, 2011

AT&T Raises Phone Insurance and Slaps Data Hogs

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 04:30 PM

"AT&T plans to raise insurance costs for iPhone users and begin to throttle the top 5 percent of its data users as it prepares for the launch of Apple's fifth-generation handset."

You can go here to see the updated insurance information, but basically they are raising their rates from $5.00 USD to $7.00. And that is for current as well as new users, so no grandfathering here! On top of that will be a $199.00 USD deductible for this new tier they are calling "Device Tier 3." Supposedly this is for iPhones and other smartphones in the lineup. Heavy data users are also being sent text messages from AT&T with a warning of a reduced speed come October 1st if they don't watch it. I never have to worry about that as I'm close to WiFi most of the time, thankfully, but even if I wasn't, I'm not sure I would hit that top 5% of users threshold. How about you, do you ever come close? What are your thoughts?

Monday, May 30, 2011

abroadband: Data Access for Travellers

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 09:00 AM

My friend Rafe Blanford pointed out this service, which I hadn't heard of until now. It looks interesting - at current rates, it's about 86 cents USD/CAD per MB, and they support SIMs, microSIMs, and USB sticks. That's not "I'm going to order a TV season on iTunes and download it all" cheap, but if you were careful about not downloading email attachments and were sparing with your Internet access, you could make a $40 investment last a week or two. While you can check your online balance easily, it seems this isn't a true pre-pay solution...the metre keeps running without stopping, so be careful what you decide to download.

Note that this is for data only: this is for your laptop, tablet, or I-only-want-Internet-phone. If you want to use your phone abroad and do voice calls, text, etc. you'll need to get a SIM from a wireless carrier. Anyone know of a service similar to this but for full phone service?

Monday, March 7, 2011

AT&T and Verizon Plans Compared

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 02:00 AM

"With the original iPad, you had a simple choice to make: to 3G or not to 3G. But with the addition of Verizon 3G data options alongside those from longtime Apple partner AT&T, you now have to not only decide if you want 3G connectivity in addition to Wi-Fi, but which carrier you want service from as well."

Pretty clear that as you progress in usage, the Verizon tiered plan will actually be more affordable. Nice chart so you can actually compare side by side the two plans, along with some explanation about the charges for the data usage on the iPad.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Two New Billing Options From AT&T

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 05:00 AM

"AT&T is offering tablet owners two new postpaid billing options. With a $25 for 2GB plan, customers can get a month free for a limited time. AT&T is now offering tablet owners the option of a post-paid billing plan. Like the prepaid plan, it doesn't require a long-term contract and is added on to a customer's existing monthly statement."

Now you can go with a prepaid or a postpaid option, but the twist is in how its charged. If you go with the prepaid option ($14.99 USD for 250MB a month or $25.00 USD for 2GB), you pay in advance via credit card. If you go with the postpaid option, it is charged to your AT&T bill, including the overages. And there is where there is another twist. If you go over on the prepaid option, you pay either $14.99 USD for another 250MB or they charge you $25.00 USD for another 2GB. If it's on the postpaid option though, you get charged the same $14.99 USD for the 250MB option but if you go over on the $25.00 plan, you are only charged $10.00 USD per GB. No contract terms on either plan, but for convenience it appears to me that the postpaid version is a better deal.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

New Network Capability to Allow Multitasking on the Verizon iPhone

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 04:00 AM

"One important weapon in AT&T's arsenal against Verizon in the iPhone arms race is that Verizon's wireless network does not allow smartphone owners to make voice calls and surf the Web at the same time."

Until you use it, not sure you will realize how handy it is to talk on the phone and be able to surf the 'Net for data so this will be a big bonus for Verizon customers. The next version of their network, which they call LTE, will allow for the simultaneous data and voice capability that we AT&T users have come to love. This isn't for at least a year however, but they are going to demonstrate it while at the Mobile World Congress being held this week in Barcelona.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Do You Need to Track Your Data Usage?

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple Software (OS X)" @ 10:32 AM

"When users had unlimited data there was no reason to be concerned with how or where that data was being consumed. Since AT&T dropped unlimited data in favor of tiered data caps, though, users have struggled to understand data usage, and now AT&T is faced with a law suit accusing it of systematically overcharging customers."

DataMan is what the author suggests, and it sells for $1.99 USD in the iTunes store [affiliate link]. You can also get the free lite version [link] if you just want to test it out before getting the full version that allows more functionality and "more precise" monitoring, as you can see in the image above. I still have the unlimited data plan so I don't worry too much about it, but it appears this app can really break it down for you if you need specifics. What do you use to track your data?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Verizon Going With Unlimited Data Plans Only

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 05:00 AM

"Well, that didn't last very long at all: looks like Verizon is killing off its $15 150MB data plan for smartphones altogether, instead corralling folks into the $30 unlimited option."

Interesting they are going this route instead of the route that AT&T chose, with tiered plans. Is this another selling point for them? It doesn't appear that is the motivation behind it since they are making it an across the board change for all smartphones, not just the iPhone. What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Android Users Are Data Hogs

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "The Competition" @ 06:00 AM

"Fashionable though it may be to bash AT&T's 3G data network, its performance is, to an extent, a victim of its own success. Subscribers with the AT&T-only iPhone consume way more data than people whose phones cannot run a wide variety of apps, and as a result, AT&T now limits the amount of data iPhone owners can use each month."

And it appears this may be happening soon to Android users, as their data usage surpasses the data usage on 3G of iPhone users by 16%, 72% to 56% respectively. iPhone users tend to use Wi-Fi more than Android users, in no small part to limits placed on the apps by Apple and AT&T, so it's expected that other networks are going to place caps on their data plans. What are your thoughts, sooner rather than later?

Tags: hardware, data, android, 3g, cap

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Wow AT&T, Just Wow

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "The Competition" @ 05:21 PM

"AT&T has warned that its recent data caps will still apply when using the 3G MicroCell. Despite its creating a 3G cell site of its own, it's still considered part of the network and counts towards the 200MB or 2GB ceilings, even though the Internet connection handles much more of the traffic. AT&T has justified the lack of free data by noting that the data still goes over its network at other stages."

I thought I was seeing things when I read this the first time, and had to reread closer to see if I was missing something. Nope. AT&T announced that they are going to put any data that is obtained via the MicroCell (data that you already pay for via your Internet provider) towards your monthly cap. I've read responses to this from outrage to no big deal. From my perspective, I use Wi-Fi at home, so if I were to get one I'd fit under the reasoning AT&T is using, which is that it was intended to improve voice calls not provide a primary data stream. But on the surface it's just, well, wow. Amazing. What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Speaking of Data, How do you Check Yours?

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 09:00 PM

"With AT&T's new data plans announced and going into effect in less than a week, users may feel the need to do some preparation."

And part of that preparation is finding out how much data you use, and also how much do you really need? There are several ways to do this, the easiest (if you reset your counter each month) is to go direct to your iPhone and look it up under Setting -> General -> Usage. There are also other methods, such as dialing *DATA# ( *3282# ) on your iPhone or going direct to AT&T via their website or via their free myWireless Mobile app [iTunes Link]. I'm on the family plan so I find it easier to go direct to the website.

AT&T Pricing, What Does it all Mean?

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 07:02 PM

"In case you missed it early this morning, AT&T's new mobile data plans (DataPlus, DataPro and Tethering) have given up on the idea of unlimited data in favor of a split tier of 200MB at the low end ($15) and 2GB at the high end ($25), with a $20 supplement for tethering (but hey -- tethering! and only six months late!)."

Late, but at least now tethering is going to be an option. Lots of stories on the latest news out from AT&T on their changes in pricing for their mobile data plans. You can also find out more details from this "candid posting" at TUAW, and Gizmodo has some scenarios posted with regards to the new pricing plans. Bottom line is, you can keep your current plan but new customers, after this Monday, won't be able to get on the unlimited plans for the iPhone or iPad. And if you want tethering on your unlimited plan? Sorry, that only comes with the 2GB DataPro $25.00 USD per month plan. The upside is that if you aren't a heavy user (AT&T says 98% of their smartphone customers aren't heavy users), you get some cost savings (depending on your usage) and some flexibility as you can move in and out of the DataPlus and DataPro plans as your needs change. I'm not too happy about the tethering restrictions however. What are your thoughts on all of this?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Going Traveling With Your iPad? Budget for Data

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 10:00 AM

"You've just picked up that nice iPad 3G and now you're heading off on vacation in Europe in a month. You'd like to keep up with news about Icelandic volcanoes, so you're taking your iPad with you. How much is it going to cost you to do data roaming as you wander the streets of Venice? Unfortunately, a lot."

This is of course if you use the 3G service, and if I was traveling to any of the countries on the AT&T list then I don't think I would use their plan. I haven't done much international traveling but can't you just get a sim card from the country you are in and use that instead of using your AT&T sim? Wouldn't that be cheaper than what AT&T is going to provide? I mean, it's not like it is your iPhone and you need to keep the same number so people can reach you. Wi-Fi seems the place to go when you travel with one of these.

iPad Data Plan From Australia's Telstra and UK's Orange

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 07:00 AM

"As iPad fever grips the nation, Telstra today announced it will offer dedicated data plans for the iPad 3G in Australia."

And if you activate your "kit" by the 30th of June, 2010, you get an additional 2GB of data. The pricing is a bit different from what we have here in the US, which is $14.99USD for 250MB of data on the basic plan and $29.99 USD for unlimited data plan. Another company on the international front that has announced data plans for the iPad is Orange UK. Their announcement has their basic plan at £12.50 and their unlimited at about £40 per month. In comparison, if they priced the same plans for basic and unlimited as AT&T is in the US, their plans would cost respectively £10 and £20 per month.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Pics of Apple's NC Data Center

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple News" @ 09:00 AM

"Aerial footage of Apple's massive data center in rural North Carolina clearly show how large the $1 billion complex is. Shot recently by a local realtor, the footage shows a massive facility the size of a shopping mall."

One of these days I'll have to drive to The Dalles, about 30 minutes from where I live, and take some photos to post here of Googles Data Center. That is if I can get close enough with the tight security they have there. Impressive structure here, and it certainly seems to be bigger than the one in The Dalles, but Google has 3 or 4 large buildings instead of one massive structure like this one.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Careful iPhone Data Roamers, This Bug Could Bite You

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple Software (iPhone/iPod Touch)" @ 09:00 AM

"An Estonian website recently published an interesting bug with the iPhone's Mobile Safari web browser that could potentially use excess data and potentially run a hefty bill if their reasonable use limit is breached."

The bug happens when you go to a website that has Motion JPEG to stream video. If you don't fully quit Safari or go to a different webpage it will keep running in the background. I find myself doing this often, open up a page and when done I hit the home button to get back to the main screen. Doing so if I go to one of these sites will keep the data going. Not a problem since I have unlimited but I can see where it could be for someone in a different country. Roamer beware!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Rumor: AT&T May Lower Data Plan Prices

Posted by Vincent Ferrari in "Apple iPhone & iPod Touch" @ 11:00 AM

"There is a "strong possibility" that AT&T will drop the entry-level price to $59 from $69, says Cote Collaborative analyst Michael Cote, an industry pricing strategist. The announcement, he said, will probably accompany the launch of the new iPhone on June 8, during Apple's World Wide Developers Conference. The price cut would underscore the pressure AT&T and Apple are under to boost iPhone sales."

This sounds more like strategic speculation than some kind of plan from AT&T but it still seems like a good one. As it is, AT&T's data plans are a bit high on the price scale; I'd welcome a $20 a month reduction in my bill!

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