All-you-can-eat policy means Three is 97% about data

All-you-can-eat policy means Three is 97% about dataOf all the main networks in the UK, Three has always been a bit of an odd one out. Not in a bad way at all, but rather in a way that always gives a real sense of alternative to the me-too tariffs and options offered by the other four (or should we say three, WhereIsEverything?).

It's also known as the data network thanks to its at-times maverick insistence in offering true all-you-can-eat data plans when other networks' so-called unlimited tariffs are anything but.

And if you wondered just how significant a selling point that is for Three, consider the following: the network has just revealed that ninety seven percent of all the traffic it handles is data.

In other words, all calls and texts put together amounts for just 3% of Three's mobile traffic.

Writing on the official Three blog, director of network strategy Phil Sheppard wrote that the figures very much represented a coming-of-age for the network that has always put mobile data first.

“Back in 2003 when we began our journey as a 3G network, it felt at times like the technology we had at our fingers tips was a bit Tomorrow's World,” Sheppard wrote. “It was ahead of its time, and few knew how 3G and mobile data could really be relevant in people's lives particularly with a lack of decent handsets.

“Fast forward to today, in a market flooded with tablets and smartphones, and there can be no denying the importance of a reliable, powerful network like ours.”

So who else reading that is thinking it's just a matter of time now until Three starts charging more for data? Just us?

Read more about: 3 Mobile

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darkspark88  Oct. 31, 2011 at 21:16

Is there a reason why EVERYTHING mobile can't just be about data? It would make billing a lot simpler and data would handle voice, texts, internet...

CTPAHHIK  Nov. 1, 2011 at 08:08

3G standard does not have good QOS specifications. QOS is quality of service, which is responsible for prioritizing different data streams based on acceptable latency for a given service. Voice is very latency sensitive as you cannot have a normal conversation with delays of more than 250ms. In mixed environment voice must always take priority over data. This is what currently happens because voice runs on separate stream. If you bundle voice inside data packets (VOIP) network will not be able to prioritize it correctly. Hopefully 4G standard will solve this problem once and for all. We will have continuous data stream with everything together - just how CDMA network is supposed to function.

Stelph  Nov. 1, 2011 at 10:13

True, but although that is how CDMA is supposed to fucntion, hopefully true 4G wont have the CDMA limitation of not being able to talk and surf the web on your smartphone at the same time!

CTPAHHIK  Nov. 1, 2011 at 10:36

CDMA does not have this limitation. What happens on US CDMA networks are two separate streams not being able to work together. You have legacy CDMA for voice and EVDO-A for data. There is single radio on the phone that is unable to handle both simultaneously. You want to move everything to EVDO-A, but that would cut out all devices not supporting EVDO (old dumb phones).
In GSM phones you have two radios - GSM (legacy voice) and 3G CDMA (data). That's why 3G eats more battery as you have two radios active.
Three UK does not have GSM network, so if you disable GSM radio on the phone you have only one active, with both voice/data being on 3G CDMA.

It's somewhat similar to WiFi supporting B/G/N standards. If you disable B modulation you will have better capacity with G/N. To get fastest speed you want to turn off B and G entirely and keep only N. However, all you devices have to support N modulation.

CTPAHHIK  Nov. 1, 2011 at 10:44

"just a matter of time now until Three starts charging more for data"
Three network is already way over it's designated capacity. With everyone using Three for data speeds are awful in densely populated areas. They have get more spectrum ASAP or start installing low power directional antennas.


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