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Posted Mar 6, 2012
7:47:27 AM
Haw anyone else been noticing changes in the data?

I'm looking for people who have been having the same issues with AT&T data billing lately that we have. My husband and I both have iPhones 4 and we have never had issues with data usages until the last 4-6 months. From what I have been reading it seems like many people have been having issues in the last 4-6 months with all sorts of data charges. The only conclusion we can make is that AT&T changed something... not sure what but something changed and they have not informed the customers about this change so now many people are experiencing overage changes on data plans.

 

We started to notice our change on the November 2011 bill and then after every month we were both over on 200mb of data by the first few weeks in. I never use my phone for any internet surfing and am connected to the wireless at home and at work so even if I did I wouldn't be sucking up data. My husband does surf the web on his phone but it's just menial stuff no app downloads or anything like that. There is no reasonable explanation of why we would be using up as much data as we were. None of this was an issue until we upgraded to 5.0 so we both think it happened with that upgrade.

 

Last month, we realized we could "turn off" the cellular data on our phones which is what we have been doing but what we found out what that was that AT&T had to have change things. Now picture messages, map systems and all the programs that we used all the time before the 5.0 upgrade we are no longer able to use without cellular data on. I used to send picture messages all the time which were always logged as SMS messages and never effected my phone (we have unlimited messaging) but they are now considered data usages and they suck up a lot!

 

The usage on my phone went from Sep @ 139.9mb, Oct @ 217.5 mb, Nov @ 372 mb, Dec @ 318.6 mb, Jan @ 396.1mb and Feb @ 205mb. My husband's is Sep @ 189.2mb, Oct @ 361.4 mb, Nov @ 358.8 mb, Dec @ 258.3 mb, Jan @ 245.2mb and Feb @ 188mb. We don't use icloud and never had, we don't do a backup unless it's home on the wi-fi so there is no logical explanation for what is using the data leaving us to conclude that AT&T had to have changed something with the 5.0 upgrade that we did. We upgraded our phones in October and that is when all the overage started and this month, February, is when we have been turning off the cellular data on the phones.

 

If I look at the data usage as it's laid out on the bill it all looks to be text messages which should fall under the unlimited messaging we have but for some reason they do not and they are now likewise, picture messages which used to be covered under our unlimited messaging are not classified as Internet/MEDia Net and those are being charged. I pulled up an old bill from before the 5.0 upgrade and it shows the "picture/video msg" section, shows there were 33 sent and they were 0.00 charge and ARE NOT included in the 200MB data. The actually detailed section of this bill also shows the picture and video messages as being "MSG4" and not as being included in part of the data usage for the phone.

 

Has anyone else experienced this? Do you know what they changed and how to fix it? Nothing with the update, 5.0, said they would change your processing of your phone and I just don't feel like they have explained what this data black hole is and why we have it. If they had told us they would be altering our billing and usage abilities we never would have opted for the update...

 

Thoughts??

Haw anyone else been noticing changes in the data?

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Mar 6, 2012 8:08:09 AM
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Employee

MMS (picture) messages have always required that cellular data be turned on to work. When you send or receive an MMS message, it does not count toward your data usage but it does need the cellular data network to work.

 

However, your issues with billing sound to be caused by iMessage. With ios 5.0, Apple introduced the iMessage capability into their message app. When you use the message app, there are two ways to send messages, via SMS/MMS or via iMessage. Unless you have it turned off, the phone will use iMessage when sending to other iphones or Apple devices. Any text or picture sent via SMS/MMS does not count against your data plan. However, any text or picture sent via iMessage does count against your data plan if sent via the cellular network.

*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent AT&T’s position, strategies or opinions.

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Mar 6, 2012 8:17:14 AM
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So why is it that AT&T elects NOT to tell a customer this? Why would you intentionally allow something that would "harm" your customers when all you need to do is just let them know that you have altered their system? Would it not be a better company approach to NOT turn make it automatic but rather enlighten your customers of such capbilities and COST and allow them to make the choice if they want it? 

 

I think AT&T really needs to re-evaluate how they treat their customers. With all the issues with the upgrades, the highely questionable ethics applied to sistuations like this and that of the "grandfathered data users" I don't see why we should stay. This is a family of AT&T users who will not be hanging around... Sprint may not be the best but at least they aren't scamming you. 

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Mar 6, 2012 9:04:30 AM
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How is ATT scamming you? Highly questionable ethics? Haha please.  You are choosing to use the functionality on the phone you bought and somehow that becomes ATT's responsibility to police your data usage?  You are responsible for your actions and choices.  iMessage is Apples product in their OS; not ATT's.  And besides, text messages are small...I would guess you have send thousdands upon thousands to use hundreds of MB's of data.  If you dont like the functionality of iMessage, turn it off.

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Mar 6, 2012 9:40:39 AM
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ACE - Professor

No, I have not notice any change on three iPhone 4 devices - their monthly usage continues to be completely identical to previous months, and totally in line with usage.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Mar 6, 2012 9:46:33 AM
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ACE - Professor

Following up here for a thought I had in another post. If you're using iMessage and not SMS/MMS that *will* increase your data use (this is an Apple iOS change, not an AT&T change.)

 

If you have unlimited SMS/MMS messaging with AT&T, you can turn off iMessage and save your data when sending SMS/MMS messages...

 

Settings->Messages, turn iMessage OFF on both phones.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Mar 6, 2012 10:37:58 AM
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We have an iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s on our family plan. Both of us use iMessage and both of us use iCloud. There has been absolutely NO change in our data usage since Apple released 5.0..NONE...ZERO

But even if it had changed, it still would not be an AT&T issue!

 

Something you are doing is using data. As has been suggested, make sure you turn iMessage off. You can also turn off all your push notifications and location services.

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Mar 6, 2012 10:39:00 AM
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imessage is not the issue... it's not be on for the phones in quite some time. iMessage was never turned on with my phone and was turned off a month or two after the upgrade on my husbands as it was not something he wanted to use either. 

 

Like to provide any more solutions to the issue... If it's not the imessage feature what else can possibly be using data on the phone???

 

And yes... AT&T has highly questionable ethics... that is very apparent in many things they do. In the last few months it's gotten much worse and while you may who sees no issue in many of these, you are certainly a minority.

 

I've been reading several website and blog posts where this "excessive" data charge is an issue and most of them have not found a solution either. While others may not consider using the phrase "highly questionable ethics" that is the nice way of putting what most are saying.

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Mar 6, 2012 10:44:14 AM
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I have no need for push notifications so those are off and I never utilize any GPS capabilities for programs. I don't use facebook/twitter or either of those either.

 

The only thing I do on my phone is text and send photos. I use the calendar and notes. No reminders, no bookmarks, no photo steams, no documents, no find my phone, no twitter, no music and no videos. If I need the internet I use it only when on the wireless of home or work and I only use the app store at home on the network.

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Mar 6, 2012 10:54:55 AM
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We may be in the minority here but ONLY because most people who come to these message boards do so to COMPLAIN!! There are millions of people who don't have these problems.....you just don't hear from them.

 

 


tigers_luv wrote:

imessage is not the issue... it's not be on for the phones in quite some time. iMessage was never turned on with my phone and was turned off a month or two after the upgrade on my husbands as it was not something he wanted to use either. 

 

Like to provide any more solutions to the issue... If it's not the imessage feature what else can possibly be using data on the phone???

 

And yes... AT&T has highly questionable ethics... that is very apparent in many things they do. In the last few months it's gotten much worse and while you may who sees no issue in many of these, you are certainly a minority.

 

I've been reading several website and blog posts where this "excessive" data charge is an issue and most of them have not found a solution either. While others may not consider using the phrase "highly questionable ethics" that is the nice way of putting what most are saying.


 

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Mar 6, 2012 10:59:59 AM
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ACE - Professor

tigers_luv wrote:

imessage is not the issue... it's not be on for the phones in quite some time. iMessage was never turned on with my phone and was turned off a month or two after the upgrade on my husbands as it was not something he wanted to use either. 

 

Like to provide any more solutions to the issue... If it's not the imessage feature what else can possibly be using data on the phone???

 

And yes... AT&T has highly questionable ethics... that is very apparent in many things they do. In the last few months it's gotten much worse and while you may who sees no issue in many of these, you are certainly a minority.

 

I've been reading several website and blog posts where this "excessive" data charge is an issue and most of them have not found a solution either. While others may not consider using the phrase "highly questionable ethics" that is the nice way of putting what most are saying.


You have to remember that there are something like 16 million iphone users. Even if hundreds of people post that they think AT&T (or VZ)  is doing something to their data, that's not most subscribers. It's a tiny fraction of subscribers.

 

In fact, most people have no issue with data on their smart devices (be they android, iPhone, or windows phone 7, or blackberry) on any carrier. Some do, but most don't.

 

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Mar 6, 2012 11:30:36 AM
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Since you do so little on your iPhone and believe AT&T are unethical scammers then maybe you should consider a dumb phone. Smiley Wink

 


tigers_luv wrote:

I have no need for push notifications so those are off and I never utilize any GPS capabilities for programs. I don't use facebook/twitter or either of those either.

 

The only thing I do on my phone is text and send photos. I use the calendar and notes. No reminders, no bookmarks, no photo steams, no documents, no find my phone, no twitter, no music and no videos. If I need the internet I use it only when on the wireless of home or work and I only use the app store at home on the network.


 

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Mar 6, 2012 2:10:24 PM
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Turn your data off, settings, general, network, cellular data. Turn it off then use the phone like you normally do, you find out quickly what you are doing that is using data and what isn't.

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Mar 7, 2012 3:20:50 PM
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Edited by anton697 on Mar 7, 2012 at 3:23:05 PM

brainwaver wrote:

We have an iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s on our family plan. Both of us use iMessage and both of us use iCloud. There has been absolutely NO change in our data usage since Apple released 5.0..NONE...ZERO

But even if it had changed, it still would not be an AT&T issue!

 

Something you are doing is using data. As has been suggested, make sure you turn iMessage off. You can also turn off all your push notifications and location services.


Well if you're using iMessage and iCloud over Wifi, then of course there probably would be no change in your data usage (at least data that is used over AT&T's network); if you used either one extensively over wireless (and your other data usage patterns don't change), then I'm wiling to bet that your data usage would change...not unless you're insinuating that you've found a way to use iMessage and/or iCloud over wireless (not Wifi) without incurring a single byte of data usage?

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Mar 7, 2012 4:26:22 PM
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Edited by brainwaver on Mar 7, 2012 at 5:09:08 PM

So are you "insinuating" that I am lying to the OP?? I can assure you I have had no SPIKE in my data usage since upgrading from the iPhone 4 to the 4S. And I'm sure I'm not alone. I am either on wifi or 3G so I'm not sure what you are accusing me of insinuating.

 

I don't have the time right now but when I do I will post my average monthly usage prior to and after using iOS5.

 

 UPDATE: We are on the 2GB plan. 3 month avg with iPhone 4 prior to iOS5 (138.3 mb); 3 month avg after upgrading to iPhone 4S (134.7 mb).

 

Second iPhone 4: 3 month avg prior to iOS5 (161.2 mb); 3 month avg with iOS5 (168.8 mb).

 

 


anton697 wrote:

brainwaver wrote:

We have an iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s on our family plan. Both of us use iMessage and both of us use iCloud. There has been absolutely NO change in our data usage since Apple released 5.0..NONE...ZERO

But even if it had changed, it still would not be an AT&T issue!

 

Something you are doing is using data. As has been suggested, make sure you turn iMessage off. You can also turn off all your push notifications and location services.


Well if you're using iMessage and iCloud over Wifi, then of course there probably would be no change in your data usage (at least data that is used over AT&T's network); if you used either one extensively over wireless (and your other data usage patterns don't change), then I'm wiling to bet that your data usage would change...not unless you're insinuating that you've found a way to use iMessage and/or iCloud over wireless (not Wifi) without incurring a single byte of data usage?


 

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Mar 8, 2012 8:51:18 AM
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brainwaver wrote:

So are you "insinuating" that I am lying to the OP?? I can assure you I have had no SPIKE in my data usage since upgrading from the iPhone 4 to the 4S. And I'm sure I'm not alone. I am either on wifi or 3G so I'm not sure what you are accusing me of insinuating.

 

I don't have the time right now but when I do I will post my average monthly usage prior to and after using iOS5.

 

 UPDATE: We are on the 2GB plan. 3 month avg with iPhone 4 prior to iOS5 (138.3 mb); 3 month avg after upgrading to iPhone 4S (134.7 mb).

 

Second iPhone 4: 3 month avg prior to iOS5 (161.2 mb); 3 month avg with iOS5 (168.8 mb).

 

 


anton697 wrote:

brainwaver wrote:

We have an iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s on our family plan. Both of us use iMessage and both of us use iCloud. There has been absolutely NO change in our data usage since Apple released 5.0..NONE...ZERO

But even if it had changed, it still would not be an AT&T issue!

 

Something you are doing is using data. As has been suggested, make sure you turn iMessage off. You can also turn off all your push notifications and location services.


Well if you're using iMessage and iCloud over Wifi, then of course there probably would be no change in your data usage (at least data that is used over AT&T's network); if you used either one extensively over wireless (and your other data usage patterns don't change), then I'm wiling to bet that your data usage would change...not unless you're insinuating that you've found a way to use iMessage and/or iCloud over wireless (not Wifi) without incurring a single byte of data usage?


 


Chill out--no one's insinuating that you're lying; all I said was that if your connection habits haven't changed (i.e., you didn't all of a sudden decide to start using wireless more often than wifi), then odds are your data consumption won't change too much--how is that calling you out as lying to the OP?   LOL at your telling me that I'm insinuating that you're lying to the OP--I could say the same thing about you with your reply to the OP's initial comment about how he believes his data usage has changed for the worse due to some issue not directly of his own doing.  Are we supposed to believe that just because the issue hasn't happened to you, that there is no issue at all and the person reporting the issue must either be mistaken or lying?  Because I could stoop to your level and tell you that is exactly what you're insinuating with your reply to the OP...

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Mar 8, 2012 8:53:41 AM
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May 24, 2012 3:54:00 PM
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I have had the same problem.  From April, 2011, through October, 2011, my average data usage was 34MB.  From November, 2011 through Jan, 2012, my average data usage has been 97MB.  From Feb through May it has averaged 173MB.  I went over my data plan usage in May.   I have not changed what I do on my phone, but something has changed.  I don't think that it is an ATT problem, I think it is the way the phone is functioning.  I wish someone had an answer for this. 

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