The news nowadays is full of stories about the way in which customers are treated, their data, security and what they actually pay for. Although a lot of the time these stories are designed to warn the public about what is happening they also have a secondary function, transparency. Customers these days are a lot more savvy than in the past and no longer are happy to pay for a service they are supposed to be getting and not getting. As a result, companies have been forced to become more transparent and offer customers information on all of these features and services. Today, T-Mobile is the next company to agree to a greater level of transparency and in particular, in respect of data throttling. An announcement today by the FCC has advised that T-Mobile has agreed to make sure customers who run mobile speed tests are provided with reliable and truthful results.
This will be of most benefit to those who often receive a throttled level of data service. A lot of T-Mobile’s plans come with a designated amount of data. For those customers, once they have exceeded their data allowance their data is greatly restricted. This of course is to make sure they do not incur additional data overage charges. However, users in this situation are not typically provided with easy ways to obtain information on what data speeds (albeit) reduced they were receiving. Before June of this year, if a reduced data user attempted to run a speed test to see their current speeds, they were charged for using the test by their already reduced data levels. Since June however T-Mobile did lift the impedance allowing users to run speed tests without incurring data usage. That said if a reduced data user ran a speed test, they were still not provided with accurate results. According to the FCC the results of such tests always displayed T-Mobile’s full network speed and not the actual reduced speed the user did indeed receive.
As a result, the FCC announced that they and T-Mobile will begin implementing the new agreement immediately with full implementation expected within sixty days. The changes customers can expect to receive, include a text message once they hit their monthly high-speed data allotment. This will also include a link “to a speed test that customers can use to determine their actual reduced speed”. In addition, T-Mobile will have to provide buttons on smartphones which link to a speed test showing the actual reduced speeds. T-Mobile will also have to modify the data warning texts it sends (as well as information on its website), to make it clear when tests are showing ‘network speeds’ and ‘reduced speeds’. So are you a T-Mobile customer? What do you make of the announcement? Happy T-Mobile need to be more transparent? Let us know.