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Today, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission filed suit against AT&T stating that the wireless carrier misled and deceived millions of its customers through data throttling for those with its unlimited data plan. On top of that, customers who cancelled their accounts because of throttling we then charged early termination fees.

"AT&T promised its customers 'unlimited' data, and in many instances, it has failed to deliver on that promise," said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez in a press release. "The issue here is simple: 'unlimited' means unlimited."

Image Credit: Flickr (Bill Bradford)

According to the FTC, AT&T’s promotional materials for its unlimited plan emphasized the word “unlimited” for customers who signed up for it. But even when customers renewed their contracts, the company failed to inform them of its throttling program which started in 2011. AT&T’s throttling program was “severe” which would begin after customers used as little as 2 gigabytes of data during a billing period and resulting in a reduction of 80 to 90 percent in their download rates.

The FTC goes on to allege that AT&T throttled at least 3.5 million unique customers for over 25 million times.

The complaint has been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Francisco.

10-20% traffic speed is still technically unlimited. 😉 They didn't say "unlimited 3G speeds" did they?

  •  sevags
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I was one of those customers. From September 2011 to April 2012 I was living in an apartment and had disconnected my internet so during those months I solely relied on my AT&T carrier provided internet. To this day I am still grandfathered into AT&T's "Unlimited" data plan. I was not provided warning and they began to throttle my connection at 2gb for 6 months (for those month I was using between 3-5gb of data a month). 2 months into throttling me they finally notified me of what they were doing and why and offered me no way out of it other than to pay for a different data plan such as their family share plans.

Looks like I will be qualifying for the class action suit, but what will I get? the usual $10 certificate that will take a year to be sent out.


These big companies shouldn't make promises they don't intend to keep. Its like a spider catching a fly in it's web, once you're in, they've got you. Very sad.


sounds like they are doing something right for once