inquisitiveme

Could "tethering" be abolished?

Tethering seems like a bit of a rip-off. Surely data is data, and you've paid for it?
Could a regulator step in and make tethering a thing of the past?

Most Useful Answer matt101101  Aug. 8, 2014 at 17:20

OFCOM won't do anything about tethering restrictions. The networks will have the data to prove that those who use tethering consume proportionately far more data than those who have unlimited mobile only plans. They'd argue that the few customers who used tethering were using so much bandwidth that they were causing other, less greedy customers to have their data speeds negatively impacted; therefore tethering had to limited.

Long story short, people have proven time and time again that they can't be trusted with unlimited tethering. There are always people who'll use way more than their fair share and use a cheap mobile data plan as a replacement for a fixed broadband connection, especially with 4G speeds. Yes, unlimited should mean unlimited, but mobile plans are sold to be used on phones, not sold to replace a proper broadband connection on a permanent basis.

As for why SIMs can't be used in tablets, that's because tablets make it far easier to consume huge amounts of data with their larger, higher resolution displays. This is basically the same problem as people tethering their phones to a laptop.

Basically, people are greedy and abused something which was a nice bonus, but not designed to be the primary use of mobile data. Due to that greed and abuse, people have had to have the nice thing taken away from them; like naughty children.

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JanSt / MOD  Aug. 8, 2014 at 14:34

If you mean, should they stop restrictions, YES! They should.
Not a single Irish network, eg, allows tethering on prepay!

Also, most Irish networks won't give you a prepay sim that works in a 3G tab. A 6 inch phone, yes. A 7 inch tab, no....

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 8, 2014 at 17:20

OFCOM won't do anything about tethering restrictions. The networks will have the data to prove that those who use tethering consume proportionately far more data than those who have unlimited mobile only plans. They'd argue that the few customers who used tethering were using so much bandwidth that they were causing other, less greedy customers to have their data speeds negatively impacted; therefore tethering had to limited.

Long story short, people have proven time and time again that they can't be trusted with unlimited tethering. There are always people who'll use way more than their fair share and use a cheap mobile data plan as a replacement for a fixed broadband connection, especially with 4G speeds. Yes, unlimited should mean unlimited, but mobile plans are sold to be used on phones, not sold to replace a proper broadband connection on a permanent basis.

As for why SIMs can't be used in tablets, that's because tablets make it far easier to consume huge amounts of data with their larger, higher resolution displays. This is basically the same problem as people tethering their phones to a laptop.

Basically, people are greedy and abused something which was a nice bonus, but not designed to be the primary use of mobile data. Due to that greed and abuse, people have had to have the nice thing taken away from them; like naughty children.

JanSt / MOD  Aug. 8, 2014 at 17:34

Matt, if Ian Duncan Smith hacked your account, send us a note. By pidgeon....

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