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Verizon Wireless Says It Knows Its Bandwidth Limit

It's interesting that Verizon is going to pull back from the term unlimited. The ways you can use the service are still restrictive (i.e. no video, no streaming, no download/upload of files, etc.) but the restrictiveness is comparable to Cingular (see Cingular's Terms and Conditions). Meanwhile, Sprint Nextel's Ts & Cs are much more vague (and separates data issues through various parts of the TOS agreement). They do say, "We reserve the right to deny or terminate service without notice for any misuse," and mention that if you're using the phone data plan for uses other than what you're being billed for (i.e. you're using the phone as a modem when you're not on that data plan), you could run into problems. What I find interesting is that Cingular and Verizon disallow "machine to machine" applications when using personal data plans. I wonder, if the carriers really wanted to crack down on FMC/MMC, would they say that the signaling done to send calls from Wi-Fi to cellular networks is an M2M application. It could be contrived that way, figure that it is used to send signaling information between two devices without input from the end user. Either way, I'm not sure that DiVitas or other FMC/MMC apps fall under the allowed uses for wireless data under either carrier.
Sean Ginevan
NWC Contributing Editor

Kudos to Verizon Wireless for finally marketing it in a way that reflects what it really is. This might be a pre-cursor to plans that really are unlimited. By the way, this is going to position the 3G services as inferior to mobile WiMAX, which is not likely to have such conservative ceilings.
Frank Bulk
NWC Contributing Editor

With the blogosphere buzzing for months over exactly what bandwidth constraints Verizon Wireless puts on its "unlimited" Broadband Access data service, the service provider has made a move to revise its advertising to end the use of the word "unlimited." It has also modified some of its supporting documentation to explain exactly what subscribers are entitled to with their data service.

Reporters and bloggers first called into question exactly what was really so unlimited about some unlimited 3G wireless data service more than a year ago. The story gained more heat last summer when disgruntled--and puzzled--subscribers found themselves cut off from the service for using too much bandwidth.

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