AT&T cracking down on customers using tethering, hotspot cracks

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Date: Friday, August 5th, 2011, 10:53
Category: iPhone, News


If you thought you were clever in tethering your smartphone or turning it into a Wi-Fi hotspot, AT&T might have some words about that.

Per 9to5Mac, users have reported being kicked off their unlimited data plans for using free tethering apps such as MiWi for jailbroken iPhones or PDANet for Android handsets. AT&T is reportedly sending notices to these customers, informing them their plans will switch automatically to a US$45 per month DataPro plan on August 11. The carrier discontinued its US$30 unlimited data plan last summer, but allowed existing subscribers to be grandfathered in.

An AT&T representative wouldn’t confirm the hard cut-off date, but did acknowledge that it’s now cracking down on free tethering to 9to5Mac. The carrier started sending ultimatums to customers earlier this year, complete with a lovely passive-aggressive tone.

AT&T isn’t the only carrier that’s taking a hard stance against free tethering. Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile, and AT&T have apparently pushed Google into hiding free tethering apps from the Android Market, though only on smartphones sold by those carriers. Verizon also reportedly shows a warning page when it catches a user tethering without paying, and provides a number to call and set up a mobile broadband package.

Unfortunately, AT&T’s current customer agreement says that it may terminate or modify a customer’s service for unauthorized tethering.

If you’ve seen this on your end, please let us know.

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2 Responses to “AT&T cracking down on customers using tethering, hotspot cracks”

  1. After AT&T had announced that it would be sending out notices to
    iPhone owners and taking action against those who are now illegally
    tethering without an approved plan–in the interest of fairness, as the
    carrier claims–it appears that long-time rival carrier Verizon Wireless
    will also be doing the same and joining AT&T on its quest to stop illegal tethering.

  2. Seems a bit silly since Verizon offers tethering for some of their other phones. Thank goodness my daughter has one of those, so we can connect while at the beach. Oh brother apple, ATT I am already paying you for home wifi that I do not use while out – Let’s make a deal.