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Comcast's Xfinity Mobile Is Now Throttling Resolution, And Speed. Even Unlimited Users.

Reddit user /u/perezidentt posted on the /r/technology subreddit an email they received from Comcast earlier today stating that they are now going to be limiting video streaming to 480p instead of 720p unless you pay more money

 

Quote

Update on cellular video resolution and personal hotspots

 

We wanted to let you know about two changes to your Xfinity Mobile service that'll go into effect in the coming weeks.

 

Video resolution

To help you conserve data, we've established 480p as the standard resolution for streaming video through cellular data. This can help you save money if you pay By the Gig and take longer to reach the 20 GB threshold if you have the Unlimited data option.

 

Later this year, 720p video over cellular data will be available as a fee-based option with your service. In the meantime, you can request it on an interim basis at no charge. Learn more

 

This update only affects video streaming over cellular data. You can continue to stream HD-quality video over WiFi, including at millions of Xfinity WiFi hotspots.

Personal hotspots

 

If you have the Unlimited data option, your speeds on any device connected to a personal hotspot will not exceed 600 Kbps. At this speed, you'll conserve data so that it takes longer to reach the 20 GB threshold but you'll still be able to do many of the online activities you enjoy.

 

Want faster speeds when using a personal hotspot? The By the Gig data option will continue to deliver 4G speeds for all data traffic.

https://www.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/8vet3z/comcasts_xfinity_mobile_is_now_throttling/

 

So they claim that it's to help people not use as much data, but it was really just a way they can charge more money, because comcast. Should something like this not be up to the user?

 

it's a straight up money grab. it's despicable, but technically not illegal, so i doubt there will be any ramifications for them doing it. It's not like they have a good reputation to uphold.

 

I suspect articles will start popping up from tech publications and will update as they come in. i doubt people will keep quiet about this one.

EDIT: and the articles come flooding in

https://www.theverge.com/2018/7/2/17526230/comcast-xfinity-mobile-480p-video-slower-mobile-hotspot

https://www.cnet.com/news/comcast-xfinity-mobile-will-throttle-your-hotspot-speeds-and-lower-video-resolution/

https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/xfinity-mobile-throttle-streaming-480p-hotspots-3g/

https://www.fiercewireless.com/wireless/confirmed-comcast-s-xfinity-mobile-to-slow-video-streams-hotspot-connection-speed

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2 minutes ago, schwellmo92 said:

Ouch 600kbps.. and I thought Australia was bad with shaping.

Ikr. Telstra throttles me to 1.5Mbps after I exceed my 40GB cap. But it's unlimited.

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Unlimitied data: 480p, 600kbps hotspot, 20GB threshold.

That's like a bar saying unlimited free drinks, but once you pay you find out the bar staff can't pour drinks using their hands.

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Coming from New Zealand have to say these speeds and data are still premium :( 

This post is brought to you by potassium and sodium

 

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5 minutes ago, FlpDaMattress said:

Welcome to a world without Net Neutrality... 600kbp/s is borderline unusable.

While the net neutrality situation is bad, what does this have to do with NN?

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1 minute ago, sazrocks said:

While the net neutrality situation is bad, what does this have to do with NN?

Because the no fast lanes bill was over turned. 

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1 minute ago, vorticalbox said:

Because the no fast lanes bill was over turned. 

What does that have to do with anything in this thread?

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7 minutes ago, GoldenLag said:

The questiom is if you can VPN around this. 

Almost certainly.

7 minutes ago, GoldenLag said:

Still a bloody anti-consumer move

Agreed.

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1 hour ago, schwellmo92 said:

Ouch 600kbps.. and I thought Australia was bad with shaping.

At least in Australia the terms are clearly explained at the point of sale and you aren't shaped before you hit your data cap.

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26 minutes ago, GoldenLag said:

The questiom is if you can VPN around this. 

 

Still a bloody anti-consumer move

I don't think so. You can hide your browsing activity as well as DNS requests (as long as your VPN handles their own DNS resolver) using a VPN but wireless carriers and ISPs still can see amount of bandwidth flowing so they can easily throttle a connection even with a VPN.

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37 minutes ago, sazrocks said:

What does that have to do with anything in this thread?

Oh wow, so Comcast are essentially throttling every single user on their UNLIMITED data plan and charging more for higher bandwidth connections and you genuinely don't see how the repeal of NN is involved?

 

If you're not trolling and are serious then I'm going to suggest you don't understand what NN was about, at all.

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14 minutes ago, captain_to_fire said:

I don't think so. You can hide your browsing activity as well as DNS requests (as long as your VPN handles their own DNS resolver) using a VPN but wireless carriers and ISPs still can see amount of bandwidth flowing so they can easily throttle a connection even with a VPN.

How do they they diffirensiate the Video traffic from high speed large dataset transfers like downloads or upload to cloud storage?

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1 minute ago, GoldenLag said:

How do they they diffirensiate the Video traffic from high speed large dataset transfers like downloads or upload to cloud storage?

That's the difference between throttling and shaping. Throttling means they reduce all traffic regardless while shaping means they prioritise certain traffic while throttling other traffic.

 

As for how I'm not 100% sure but if I had to guess it's either by transmit location or possibly packet sniffing.

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11 minutes ago, Master Disaster said:

Oh wow, so Comcast are essentially throttling every single user on their UNLIMITED data plan and charging more for higher bandwidth connections and you genuinely don't see how the repeal of NN is involved?

 

If you're not trolling and are serious then I'm going to suggest you don't understand what NN was about, at all.

This would be step 1 in slowly implementing datarestriction in terms of speed regardless if it would be caught by net neutrality regulations. And Net neutrality is definitivly involved. They are throttling a vague but specific set of websites. 

 

Net neitrality must be established again. I can only see this getting worse.

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8 minutes ago, GoldenLag said:

How do they they diffirensiate the Video traffic from high speed large dataset transfers like downloads or upload to cloud storage?

They don't need to. If your ISP thinks your "abusing" the service and you're not complying with the "fair use policy" by doing something requiring high bandwidth, they'll throttle it even if one is connected to a VPN.

 

But if an ISP is selectively throttling traffic which happened to me more than once, let's say downloading 2GB footage from Google Drive is throttled to 700 KB/s but streaming 1080p YouTube video is smooth on a 20 down/20 up connection, a VPN might help with the throttling since my ISP cannot see the traffic from Google Drive. But then results may vary and it's a case to case basis.

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1 minute ago, Master Disaster said:

As for how I'm not 100% sure but if I had to guess it's either by transmit location or possibly packet sniffing.

Im shure people will find a way to work around it by for example add a crypting layer into the VPN before transfer.

 

Regardless of workarounds, the majority of people wont look into them and just accept fact they are now throttled in certain web workloads

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Another thought is if someone is downloading say a game from the google play store while watching a video on youtube. Would it only limit the youtube connection or will it take the entire bandwith.

 

I doubt it will be so selective it will only hamper a single connection. 

 

Another thing is if the bandwith remains hampered after the video. Is it instant recovery or will it have to wait untill you break all communication with the videoserver

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This will only get worse for people in USA. Because if NN repeal.

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Awareness is key. Never enough, even in the face of futility. Speak the truth as if you may never get to say it again. This world is full of ugly. Change it they say. The only way is to reveal the ugly. To change the truth you must first acknowledge it. Never pretend it isn't there. Never bend the knee.

 

Please quote my post in your reply, so that I will be notified and can respond to it. Thanks.

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