AT&T has revised its rules on when it throttles customers connected to its defunct unlimited data plans. Previously, there as a low 5GB threshold in place, making it far from unlimited, before subscribers were subjected to lower data speeds and higher latency — known as throttling. Now, AT&T has raised this to a far more reasonable 22GB. It’s not unlimited as advertised, but it’s way beyond the old limit, and certain to make the plans even more versatile to subscribers. According to the AT&T website, the increase has been made possible due to improvements in network infrastructure.
This affects only the AT&T subscribers connected to legacy, or grandfathered, unlimited data plans. The single, monthly fee still applies, but the plan is no longer as restricted. What’s more, there have been changes to when and where the throttling will take place.
AT&T calls the throttling a ‘speed reduction,’ and says it will now only happen when the phone is connected to a particularly congested network, and only when the 22GB threshold has been passed. If you’ve only used 10GB of your allowance, then it won’t matter how congested the network is, you’ll get the maximum speeds possible at the time.
To make sure you’re kept informed of your monthly usage, AT&T will send a message when you’ve crunched through 16.5GB worth of data, signalling you’ve got 25-percent left before throttling may occur, if you’re unlucky. Using AT&T’s Wi-Fi doesn’t count against you, so connecting to this when possible will help lessen the load. This new limit only applies to Unlimited Data Plan subscribers, and not to those on the network’s tiered or shared plans.
While this is all excellent news for some, it’s a sad reminder that AT&T no longer offers its Unlimited Data Plan — which these changes have suddenly made considerably more attractive.