T-Mobile to throttle data plans after 5GB

ZDNet.com
For cell carriers, the struggle continues to find a business model that balances rapid growth in mobile Web access with the demand for affordable service contracts. Earlier this week Canadian carrier Rogers was reported to be considering a flat-rate data plan that customers could use with multiple Internet-connected devices. And Tuesday T-Mobile announced it would drop overage charges on its unlimited data plan, but will restrict some services for those who exceed the 5GB limit.

Jim Evans reports that T-Mobile’s “throttling” will allow e-mail and Web access to continue after the customer hits her 5GB monthly plan limit, but high-bandwidth services such as streaming video will be limited. Evans notes that Sprint has no overage changes in its new 4G Overdrive service, but does on the 3G version.

“Iā€™m hopeful that as T-Mobile and Sprint both play with their plans, and AT&T gets into a new offering with the iPad 3G, that maybe we’ll finally see an elimination of the overage fee and true all-you-can-eat bandwidth plans. After all, for almost $70 a month to Sprint and others, you’d think that instead of a 5GB limit, it would be all you can eat, especially when you compare that monthly fee to the one that most people pay for all-you-can-eat cable-based Internet access.”

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