There’s a war on unlimited data being fought as we speak, and Ma Bell is leading the main charge. Just days after AT&T announced it would begin throttling data speeds for the heaviest bandwidth hogs grandfathered into the carrier’s no-limit internet service, it’s also confirmed it’s ready to crack the whip on illegal tethering as well. In attempt to achieve “fairness for all of [its] customers,” the carrier has added a bit of force behind its March announcement, sending out notices to anyone using their jailbroken iPhones as a mobile hotspot. The gist? Cut it out or be scaled back to a tiered data plan. In a statement originally given to 9to5mac, an AT&T spokesperson said:
Earlier this year, we began sending letters, emails, and text messages to a small number of smartphone customers who use their devices for tethering but aren’t on our required tethering plan. Our goal here is fairness for all of our customers. (This impacts a only small percentage of our smartphone customer base.)
The letters outline three choices:
1. Stop tethering and keep their current plan (including grandfathered unlimited plan)
2. Proactively call AT&T or visit our stores and move to the required tethering plan 3. Do nothing and we’ll go ahead and add the tethering plan on their behalf – after the dated noted in their customer notification
We reached out to AT&T and confirmed that this statement is indeed true. Consider this the company’s last warning — your time to enjoy all-you-can-eat tethering is almost at an end. How soon the day of reckoning will come, however, likely depends on when you received the notification originally.