After tomorrow, if you are a Verizon customer with unlimited data and an LTE phone, you could be throttled. Starting October 1, Verizon could slow your data speeds to help relieve strain on a cell site, assuming you tick the boxes on a set of pre-determined criteria from their updated Network Optimization policy. This policy used to cover unlimited data users on 3G-only phones, but moves into LTE territory for the first time next month, because you have “no incentive” not to try and destroy all Verizon cell sites.
So how do you know if you qualify for throttling? Well, you have to meet all of the criteria listed below while attempting to use data on a congested or under “heavy demand” cell site. Just to be clear, throttling shouldn’t happen once you leave the cell site that is under stress, but could pick back up again if you were to attach to another congested cell site for up to two billing cycles.
This is how you qualify for Network Optimization:
- Top 5% of data users (you use 4.7GB of data per month or more)
- Enrolled on an unlimited data plan or feature
- Have fulfilled your minimum contract term
- Are attempting to use data on a cell site that is experiencing high demand
I should point out that if you are on a MORE Everything plan (tiered or shared data plan), you will never be throttled, even if you use more data than an unlimited customer and are on a congested cell site. Seriously, you could be a 20GB MORE Everything plan owner and use that 20GB every single month, yet still never see slower speeds like an unlimited data customer who uses 4.8GB of data per month. Verizon likes it that you pay more for data and aren’t some freeloading unlimited outcast who poses a massive, hypothetical threat to their network, so they will give you a pass (last part might have been slightly exaggerated).
Again, the new Network Optimization policy goes into effect on October 1.
You can read our exclusive report on the new Network Optimization policy here. Verizon’s official info is here.