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T-Mobile drops contentious data cap plan

by Sarah Griffiths on 13 January 2011, 09:22

Tags: T-Mobile (NYSE:DT)

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T-Mobile has abandoned its highly unpopular plan to impose a 500MB monthly data cap on its existing smartphone customers.

In a dramatic U-turn, the company, which had previously claimed that the new cap was designed to improve the quality of its service for existing customers, has now confirmed the 500MB limit will only apply to new and upgrading customers.

After hoards of furious T-Mobile consumers vented their anger on various forums and discussions were rife about how people could leave the firm pronto because of breach of conduct, such a move may come as little surprise, but might have weakened T-Mobile's reputation non-the-less.

Lysa Hardy, T-Mobile UK's VP said in a statement: "Following a further review of our policy, these changes [the 500MB/month cap] will now be introduced from 1 February, to new and upgrading customers only - not existing customers."

"There will be no change to the data packages for existing customers for the duration of their contract and we apologise for any confusion caused. The revision to the Fair Use Policy is designed to ensure an improved quality of service for all mobile internet users," she added.

It will be interesting to note whether the debacle has eroded current customer trust in the company and whether caps for new customers will deter consumers choosing T-Mobile when more generous data plans are still available elsewhere.

Many customers were irked not only by the cap itself but T-Mobile's perceived effort to bring in such changes rather quietly and to disregard current contracts that would have seen customers with 3GB or 1GB data allowance cut to the same 500MB.

And then there was the firm's attempt to justify its move and redefine the definition of web browsing to exclude downloading and streaming data, which raised a few eyebrows.

T-Mobile confirmed that from 1 February all new and upgrading customers will get a monthly data cap of 500MB and while they will not be charged for going over that limit, consumers will not be able to download or stream content.

In what could be perceived as a money spinner, T-Mobile said that customers will have the option of shelling out for a Mobile Broadband Booster to give them 1GB of data a month. The company claimed: "This will ensure an improved quality of service for all of our mobile internet users."

HEXUS Forums :: 3 Comments

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looks like someone smacked some sense into them
Just testing the water if you ask me, seeing what they can get away with.
looks like someone smacked some sense into them

Still, I reckon a lot of people will tell them to stuff it come upgrade time