Jul 25 AT 4:37 PM Dustin Earley 9 Comments

Unlimited 4G LTE data users on Verizon to be “optimized” this October


If you’re somehow still using a truly unlimited data plan on Verizon and rely heavily on your smartphone’s data connection then you may be in for some bad news this afternoon.

Verizon has announced that under their new “Network Optimization” plan, certain unlimited 4G LTE data subscribers will see their service speed affected depending on what they’re doing and where they’re doing it. Verizon is clear that what they will be doing is not the same as throttling. Here’s how they explain it:

The difference between our Network Optimization practices and throttling is network intelligence. With throttling, your wireless data speed is reduced for your entire cycle, 100% of the time, no matter where you are. Network Optimization is based on the theory that all customers should have the best network possible, and if you’re not causing congestion for others, even if you are using a high amount of data, your connection speed should be as good as possible. So, if you’re in the top 5% of data users, your speed is reduced only when you are connected to a cell site experiencing high demand. Once you are no longer connected to a site experiencing high demand, your speed will return to normal. This could mean a matter of seconds or hours, depending on your location and time of day.Verizonon network optimization

As for what Verizon considers the top five percent of users, you have to be using over 4.7GB of data a month – quite a bit for someone with WiFi at home, but not nearly enough for someone who uses LTE for everything. As terrible as today’s news is, we suppose it could be worse. Hopefully it won’t impact too many of you.

Source: Verizon

Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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  • Haggie

    I had grandfathered unlimited data, but I still moved to T-Mobile. Their unlimited talk, text, and data is much cheaper and, in the Bay Area, my download speeds are as good or better than Verizon. My wife dumped her unlimited Verizon plan and joined me on T-Mobile a couple of weeks later.

    With Verizon, our total monthly was just shy of $300. With T-Mobile, our combined usage plan is less than $80 and our total bill is well under $150 including two new Samsung S5 phones (interest free). Also, no contract.

  • AJAY

    Way to alienate more customers, Verizon. Was on Sprint for 13 years. Switched to Verizon for LYE coverage. Hoped Sprint would get their act together in these years. Looks like I’m going T-mobile. I’ll try anything before I go back to either Sprint or Verizon. Sprint because, quite frankly, they SUCK. WHERE’S YOUR LTE, SPRINT?!? Way to lazy your ass into bankruptcy. Way to go Verizon, for having connection, but alienating tech people. Keep putting restrictions on your products to save pennies and see how long it lasts. Morons. I’ll be leaving you BOTH behind.

  • Brandon Horwath

    Been with Verizon since they operated out of a trailor in a dirt lot. Total usage so far this month is 173GB. They can do whatever they want. At $40 a month flat it’s still a steal.

    • SBM_from_LA

      sounds like you don’t have internet at home or spend a lot of data using bit torrent.

    • kat

      How do you do that? All the gb for very little money

  • kazahani

    YAY! I’m getting optimized! Doesn’t that sound just dandy? I’ll be so much more optimal after they optimize me!

  • John Patrick

    ‘Once you are no longer connected to a site experiencing high demand, your speed will return to normal. This could mean a matter of seconds or hours, depending on your location and time of day.’ Yawn, this is what they do to everybody anyway.

  • dragonhockey

    What 4G LTE delivers is download speeds 5 times faster than the current 3G network. That makes things like streaming audio and video files now feasible on mobile devices without the buffering that takes place on 3G networks. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.crittermap.airhockey.dragons