Virgin Mobile to begin throttling data speeds beginning March 23


Like so many wireless carriers, Sprint subsidiary Virgin Mobile will soon begin throttling the data speeds of those who use the most data on its ‘unlimited’ data plans. Currently, Virgin Mobile users who have used more than 2.5GB of data in Dec. 2011 are being sent to a mobile site that warns them that, beginning March 23, 2012, any data they use in a month over the 2.5GB limit will be slowed down to 256Kbps. We don’t currently have a Virgin Mobile handset to test, but we suspect that typical data rates are around 1Mbps, or four times the reduced data speed. 

Users who exceed the allotted 2.5GB in a month will receive a text message notifying them of their reduced speed for the remainder of their monthly billing cycle. Once the month is over, their speed will reset…until they exceed 2.5GB again. Users who want fast speeds have the option of paying their monthly bill early to reset their data speeds. 

Back in July, Virgin originally stated that it would begin data throttling users like this in October, but delayed the implementation for unknown reasons that are likely technical. 

Despite owning Virgin Mobile, Sprint still maintains that it will not throttle users of its unlimited data service.