Consumers want to throttle AT&T for 'throttling' practice

If you are frustrated over how responsive your cellular system is, even though you purchased an unlimited data plan from AT&T, chances are that you are not alone. According to a recent report, the Federal Trade Commission has received thousands of complaints from AT&T customers about how their phones essentially became ineffective.

The reason? A practice called "throttling" was the culprit. Essentially, Internet speeds on a cellular network would be "throttled down" to prevent customers from using additional data after they used a certain amount; commonly 2 gigabytes of data. When throttling occurred, pictures would not load, searches would not be completed, and maps that would normally appear within seconds would take minutes to load. The practice reportedly affected more than 3 million wireless customers who purchased unlimited data plans, yet who experienced substantial data slowdowns for an average of 12 days per month.

Because of this, the FTC has initiated a lawsuit against AT&T, accusing the nation's largest wireless provider of false advertising because the unlimited data plans they held out to consumers were not necessarily unlimited.

Customers are entitled to the benefit of the bargain. This means that when they purchase something based on a vendor's advertisements, they should be secure in knowing that what they purchased is actually what was sold to them. If a vendor deviates from this expectation, they could be held liable for false advertising. Federal law prohibits vendors from using slogans, phrases or sayings to mislead customers into purchasing a product or services.

In response to the lawsuit, AT&T appears adamant that it has not misled customers who purchased unlimited data plans. In the meantime, consumers want to throttle AT&T for throttling down data speeds. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Attorneys Schedule a
to experience
Contact Us Now »

Irvine Office
2020 Main Street, Suite 600
Irvine, CA 92614

Toll Free: 866-454-2281
Fax: 949-975-7501
Irvine Law Office Map

Westlake Village Office
340 North Westlake Blvd, Suite 110
Westlake Village, CA 91362

Toll Free: 866-454-2281
Phone: 805-373-1500
Fax: 805-373-1503
Westlake Village Law Office Map

*AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories: legal ability and general ethical standards.