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  1. jolemn's Avatar
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       #1  
    From http://www.pbs.org/cringely/pulpit/pulpit20060928.html

    "Unlimited" Broadband
    How much Internet service is "unlimited" Internet service? If you are a user of Verizon Wireless's Broadband Access wireless Internet service, "unlimited" means five gigabytes per month or less. The company is quite specific in its advertisements that the service is for unlimited e-mail, web surfing, and corporate intranet use, but not for downloading music or videos or running servers.

    That sounds fair, I guess, but what happens if you go over your five gigs per month (a figure that is not published anywhere)? You get a letter saying that you've gone over your "unlimited" allotment and had better cut back or risk being booted from the system. Even then you aren't told that you've gone over five gigs, just that you've been using too much.

    If you continue to use too much bandwidth, your account will be cancelled and you will be charged the $175 early termination fee.

    Now here's the part of this story I find especially interesting: Verizon doesn't look at packets or protocols to determine if you are improperly using bandwidth, they just look at total bytes transferred. If you go over five gigs THEY ASSUME YOU ARE BREAKING THE RULES and cancel your account. There is no way to appeal this decision, even if all you were doing was precisely within Verizon's own definition of "unlimited." Verizon's position is that using more than five gigs per month is IMPOSSIBLE without violating their terms of service.

    Though I haven't been booted from the Verizon network, I am a user of their wireless Internet product, which I find much easier than searching for airport hotspots. But I tend to use Verizon's service as it was intended, which is while I am on the road for a few days per month, not continuously. Nor am I a big downloader of music or videos, but I do get a lot of e-mail and I wondered how my usage fit Verizon's hardened assumptions.

    So I ran a two-day experiment. I installed a bandwidth monitor (it is in this week's links) on my Windows notebook and forced myself to use that machine exclusively for two days. The monitor reports bandwidth usage on a per-day basis, so I divided five gigabytes by 30 days and came up with a target of 166 megabytes per day. And my two-day average was... 187 megabytes.

    I told you I get a lot of e-mail.

    So if I were to use my "unlimited" Verizon account for more than the few days per month I presently do, the company would no doubt cancel my account.

    Here is what's wrong with Verizon's policy. First, Verizon isn't being honest. If they'd just say that "unlimited" really means five gigs, people would have a target to stay under. Second, as I proved above, it is possible -- even easy -- to go over the limits Verizon sees as impossible to exceed without downloading the wrong kinds of material. Third, if Verizon is going to call the service "unlimited," they are going to have to allow customers some way to appeal bad decisions by Verizon's security department. The problem here is that the folks who turn you off aren't the folks who answer your tech questions. In fact, the people who cancel your account are in the security department and don't know how to answer your questions, they just know how to accuse their customers of downloading pornography.

    If Verizon customers knew there was a limit and the client application gave them some idea how close to that limit they were getting, then people could easily cut back, saving both the system and their customer status. But that's not the way it is done. Maybe Verizon doesn't want us to know that they really have no idea whether or not you are downloading music or videos. Whatever the reason, it is heavy-handed. If the entire point is to not compromise the sacred marketing word "unlimited" in Verizon ads, well that's just dumb.
  2. PSB22's Avatar
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    #2  
    Are you talking about tethering legally (i.e. paying the tethering fee) or illegally (i.e. using PDAnet or a similar cheat program)? If the latter, then you're breaking the terms of your agreement with verizon, so you can hardly complain if they cut you off. If its the former, then yes I agree they're stupid and should have their nipples wired to the mains electricity while being beaten with a knotted rope.
  3. jolemn's Avatar
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       #3  
    I'm not talking about anything. I was just relaying the message.
  4. #4  
    Sprint Pre, Mugen 2800mah battery
  5. #5  
    Anyone had this happen using a 600/650 on a data plan (1xRTT), or is this strictly EVDO?
  6. #6  
    Thanks for the Link xenophonite.
    Fun and Informative Reading!
    Just call me Berd.
  7. #7  
    Does the term "bandwidth abuse" subject to interpretation by the legalese staff of the telephone companies? I just checked that with my DSL terms and conditions, its there too.
  8. #8  
    On 06/23/2006, 03:05 PM Ronbo2000 Mysteriously disappears from posting at TC, and then on 10/22/06 02:56 PM He returns without Warning!
    Almost 4 mos.... WOW!
    Just call me Berd.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by berdinkerdickle at Today 12:28 PM

    On 06/23/2006, 03:05 PM Ronbo2000 Mysteriously disappears from posting at TC, and then on 10/22/06 02:56 PM He returns without Warning!
    Almost 4 mos.... WOW!
    Hey, unlike some of you, I still earn my living the real way.

    Ok, are you going to help this user or not???
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by ronbo2000 View Post
    ...clip...
    Ok, are you going to help this user or not???
    Ouch!
    I don't think the OP was asking for help.

    Either way, it's nice to see you back.
    Just call me Berd.
  11. #11  
    I had a similar exp. with my $5 unlimited "in" text plan, apparnetly the decided that it wasn't quite unlimited and I got smacked with a $120 overage. Of course they credited it back to me now almost three months later. Their response, was "how do we know you are texting only people on the VZW network?" I was shocked...
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by NewGMIGuy View Post
    I had a similar exp. with my $5 unlimited "in" text plan, apparnetly the decided that it wasn't quite unlimited and I got smacked with a $120 overage. Of course they credited it back to me now almost three months later. Their response, was "how do we know you are texting only people on the VZW network?" I was shocked...
    I think they do know if you're texting a Vz customer or not.
    My bill from cing shows a detail on txt-m, whether it's M2M or forwarded from my email, or otherwise.
    Just call me Berd.

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