Top 5% of AT&T data users will be throttled

So much for the idea of getting to keep your unlimited data plan.

When AT&T switched its mobile service options to eliminate the possibility of unlimited mobile data service, existing customers could be happy knowing that their plans would not be touched. Anyone who signed up for an unlimited data package will get to keep the unlimited data package.

But will it do much good if you’re slowed down after you hit a certain milestone? How different is that than making you give up your unlimited data anyway?

That’s exactly what AT&T plans to do beginning two months from today. On October 5, the most prolific 5% of the carrier’s data downloaders will find their connections slowed each month after they cross into that territory.

The company will alert users when they are about to approach the top-5% area so they can adjust their data usage if they want.

It goes without saying that this move will affect a very small portion of AT&T’s millions-strong customer base. However, even those who are unlikely to ever reach the restricted 5% territory can surely still feel disheartened by the carrier that already has so many strikes against it.

From dropped calls to poor customer service, AT&T always falls dead last in third-party surveys of customer satisfaction among the top mobile service providers. It was also the first to implement a new data structure that completely eliminated unlimited packages, though other carriers are now beginning to follow suit.

The only major carrier that still offers completely unrestricted, unlimied mobile data is Sprint.