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Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?


Tidbits wrote:

 

Now that's funny.  You pay for 2 and 2 eat there.  Your newborn isn't eating off a plate right?  Come on be serious here...  If the kid can eat off the plate or be fed food you bet your bottom dollar you'd have to pay something.  That's the only reason why you used a newborn over someone older.

 


Actually that was the best biological/restaraunt analogy that explains tethering I've ever seen.  It makes perfect sense despite your objections.

 

Over all, I'm on the fence on this one.  AT&T can charge what they want for the services rendered, and yet, I really find it odd that AT&T would charge for a feature of the device, not something that they are doing (beyond activating a switch on the device that enables that feature).

 

As far as unlimmited data using a smart phone as a hotspot...  I can 'kind of' see not wanting to allow that occur, as allowing the device to act as a hot spot for 'free', or not charging for a device feature, could conceivably decrease potential new cellular data accounts.  Servicing MULTIPLE devices from a single device, with how the hot spot operates as I understand it, is up to 5 seperate data accounts AT&T would be missing out on, obviously a lot of money.

 

One the flip side, charging extra for tethering only ONE device, the concept I don't agree with (though again I fully acknowledge thta AT&T does have the right to charge for this non-service all they want), as the ONE device effectively shifts the data that would only be going to and processed on your phone to another device.  At no point can you exceed the maximum throughput of the smart phone so no REAL additional/excessive load can occur on the net and since it would be limited to one device, no potential loss on being able to charge for additional data accounts, so charging extra for it seems...  Well greedy.

 

The only reasonable agrument I can see for charging extra for tethering are the cases when someone tethers another device that can act as a hot spot (we're back to the extra data accounts AT&T doesn't get to charge for on those additional devices)...

Message 16 of 155

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


piersonz wrote:

Wow, ok, so by this logic, my wife and I got to the same joint and take along our newborn daughter.  Do we get charged for 2 or three since my wife is breastfeeding??  Come on man, we can play analogies and metaphors all day.  Apparently this isn't the "forum" for my questions.  I was told by AT&T that this was the way to get an answer from the company.  If the only people on here are customers then I am again wasting my time.  All I have gotten from the group here is a regurgitation of facts from the AT&T wireless site.  Yeah, crazy, I looked the way before I ever came here.  Ahh, oh well.  Yall have a good one.


 

Actually it is a really good analogy.  In general, at least in my experience, all you can eat places have one set price for adults.  Then they have a lower price for children, and children under a certain age eat for free.  Why?  The expectation is that on average adults will eat X amount of food.  Children on average will eat some percentage of X, and young enough children will on average eat little enough that it won't really make a difference.  Even though all of them have the same theoretical limit on the amount that they are allowed to eat.

 

Same with data.  The assumption is that a tethered device will use more data than the smartphone would all by itself, so they charge extra because the amount of data being used on average will go up.  And they don't want people on unlimited plans tethering because that will shoot up the average amount of data being used by a lot more.

 

However with the newest changes to their tethering plan they aren't even charging an extra fee to tether anymore.  They are just requiring that you pay for an extra 2GB of data up front. If they ever stop doing that, that might be enough to get me to switch to the 2GB plan from my unlimited plan...

Message 17 of 155
ACE - Professor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

Tidbits wrote:

 

Now that's funny.  You pay for 2 and 2 eat there.  Your newborn isn't eating off a plate right?  Come on be serious here...  If the kid can eat off the plate or be fed food you bet your bottom dollar you'd have to pay something.  That's the only reason why you used a newborn over someone older.

 


I really find it odd that AT&T would charge for a feature of the device, not something that they are doing (beyond activating a switch on the device that enables that feature).

 


 

The device has the capability to tether and provide a hotspot.

 

It's a useless capability without service. Just like the device can make voice calls, but that capability is useless without the corresponding service.

 

By this logic, since the phone can make calls, you should be able to make calls without buying a voice plan. Because the phone has the capability to do so.

*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.
Message 18 of 155

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


johninsj wrote:

  

The device has the capability to tether and provide a hotspot.

 

It's a useless capability without service. Just like the device can make voice calls, but that capability is useless without the corresponding service.

 

By this logic, since the phone can make calls, you should be able to make calls without buying a voice plan. Because the phone has the capability to do so.


Two things:

 

1.  Admittedly, my comment was not clear, I'll clarify below.

2.  What you've quoted was from my thoughts on charging extra for tethering.

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 

For standard use (the phone acts as an 'internet modem' for a single device) tethering there is no additional load, nor any potential 'lost' revenue.  With standard tethering you have your single device, typically a laptop, accessing the internet via the phone, at best, at the maximum possible speed of the phone given the signal qualities of the location you're doing the tethering in.  With a tethered device it's not possible to go beyond the real bandwidth potential of the device, so really, there's no REAL need to charge extra as it's not costing the provider extra in any way.

 

Only when you have that device function as a 'hot spot' does it make any sense at all to charge extra.  There's a potential for 5 devices using the net via the phone, so there's a potential for 4 data accounts that AT&T isn't getting paid for.

 

I get that.  I acknowledge that AT&T would like to mitigate the potential 'loss' of that revenue (though I would argue that there's no REAL expectation that without that mobile hotspot feature that any of those 4 devices would get an AT&T data account to compensate).

 

The ONLY reason I could come up with for AT&T to justify charging for tethering at all (other than, "Just cause we can") is that non-standard tethering, and those technically savvy enough to do it, could tether to another device that would act as a hotspot.

 

The fact that originally AT&T did not grant extra monthly data when paying for tethering is what puts it up in the "greed" category.

 

Users were being forced to pay for a smartphone plan and when they wanted data they had to double their costs, but get no additional monthly data allotment.  I mean come on, that's just fececiously bad.

Message 19 of 155
Highlighted

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

 

Two things:

 

1.  Admittedly, my comment was not clear, I'll clarify below.

2.  What you've quoted was from my thoughts on charging extra for tethering.

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 

For standard use (the phone acts as an 'internet modem' for a single device) tethering there is no additional load, nor any potential 'lost' revenue.  With standard tethering you have your single device, typically a laptop, accessing the internet via the phone, at best, at the maximum possible speed of the phone given the signal qualities of the location you're doing the tethering in.  With a tethered device it's not possible to go beyond the real bandwidth potential of the device, so really, there's no REAL need to charge extra as it's not costing the provider extra in any way.

 

Only when you have that device function as a 'hot spot' does it make any sense at all to charge extra.  There's a potential for 5 devices using the net via the phone, so there's a potential for 4 data accounts that AT&T isn't getting paid for.

 

I get that.  I acknowledge that AT&T would like to mitigate the potential 'loss' of that revenue (though I would argue that there's no REAL expectation that without that mobile hotspot feature that any of those 4 devices would get an AT&T data account to compensate).

 

The ONLY reason I could come up with for AT&T to justify charging for tethering at all (other than, "Just cause we can") is that non-standard tethering, and those technically savvy enough to do it, could tether to another device that would act as a hotspot.

 

The fact that originally AT&T did not grant extra monthly data when paying for tethering is what puts it up in the "greed" category.

 

Users were being forced to pay for a smartphone plan and when they wanted data they had to double their costs, but get no additional monthly data allotment.  I mean come on, that's just fececiously bad.


Except that they aren't charging extra anymore, even for using the phone as a hotspot.  You just have to pay for 4GB of data upfront instead of just 2GB.

 

Message 20 of 155
Professor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


johninsj wrote:

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

Tidbits wrote:

 

Now that's funny.  You pay for 2 and 2 eat there.  Your newborn isn't eating off a plate right?  Come on be serious here...  If the kid can eat off the plate or be fed food you bet your bottom dollar you'd have to pay something.  That's the only reason why you used a newborn over someone older.

 


I really find it odd that AT&T would charge for a feature of the device, not something that they are doing (beyond activating a switch on the device that enables that feature).

 


 

The device has the capability to tether and provide a hotspot.

 

It's a useless capability without service. Just like the device can make voice calls, but that capability is useless without the corresponding service.

 

By this logic, since the phone can make calls, you should be able to make calls without buying a voice plan. Because the phone has the capability to do so.


 

Regardless of anyone's opinion.... from Apple's own website "Personal Hotspot requires a supporting hotspot tethering plan from your carrier and works with up to three devices over Wi-Fi, three devices over Bluetooth, and one device over USB."

 

While it is a feature of the iPhone and iOS, it requires and appropriate supporting plan from the carrier.

 

Every iPhone carrier around the world (to the best of my knowledge) requires a tethering specific plan.  The 4 major US cellular companies require tethering plans for any/all of their tethering capable phone if the user wants to tether without violating the TOS.  AT&T is not being the evil {word filter evasion} here, they are simply maintaining the status quo.

Message 21 of 155
ACE - Professor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 


 

Yes, it is an additional service of AT&T. They sell a hotspot device, or you can use the iPhone as a hotspot device. In either case, you pay for the hotspot service. Your existing data service is for data use on the device. This service is for hotspot data usage by other devices.

 

That you choose to use an iPhone instead of, for example, a MiFi, is irrelevant to AT&T - their DataConnect 3G plan for the MiFi is $35 for 3GB.

*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.
Message 22 of 155
Guru

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


archermoo wrote:

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

 

Two things:

 

1.  Admittedly, my comment was not clear, I'll clarify below.

2.  What you've quoted was from my thoughts on charging extra for tethering.

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 

For standard use (the phone acts as an 'internet modem' for a single device) tethering there is no additional load, nor any potential 'lost' revenue.  With standard tethering you have your single device, typically a laptop, accessing the internet via the phone, at best, at the maximum possible speed of the phone given the signal qualities of the location you're doing the tethering in.  With a tethered device it's not possible to go beyond the real bandwidth potential of the device, so really, there's no REAL need to charge extra as it's not costing the provider extra in any way.

 

Only when you have that device function as a 'hot spot' does it make any sense at all to charge extra.  There's a potential for 5 devices using the net via the phone, so there's a potential for 4 data accounts that AT&T isn't getting paid for.

 

I get that.  I acknowledge that AT&T would like to mitigate the potential 'loss' of that revenue (though I would argue that there's no REAL expectation that without that mobile hotspot feature that any of those 4 devices would get an AT&T data account to compensate).

 

The ONLY reason I could come up with for AT&T to justify charging for tethering at all (other than, "Just cause we can") is that non-standard tethering, and those technically savvy enough to do it, could tether to another device that would act as a hotspot.

 

The fact that originally AT&T did not grant extra monthly data when paying for tethering is what puts it up in the "greed" category.

 

Users were being forced to pay for a smartphone plan and when they wanted data they had to double their costs, but get no additional monthly data allotment.  I mean come on, that's just fececiously bad.


Except that they aren't charging extra anymore, even for using the phone as a hotspot.  You just have to pay for 4GB of data upfront instead of just 2GB.

 


Which, you'd have to admit, was very shrewd of AT&T--that way, people can't complain that they have to pay extra simply for flipping a switch to allow tethering, so to speak.  Now AT&T is effectively saying, "Here, you pay an additional X dollars up front so that you get a 4 GB allotment instead of 2 GB and we'll essentially throw in the tethering for free".

 

Message 23 of 155
Mentor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

Can't you jailbreak your phone & get tethering & keep your unlimited data plan.?  I don't have my phone jailbroken but I know a friend that jailbroke his iphone but since we didn't have 3G at the time it was pointless.  I know I'm fin to get killed for saying the banned "jailbreak" word here.  If I have unlimited internet for $30 & to get tethering I have to pay $45 for 4GB.  Most people would consider jailbreaking there device not to lose the unlimited data plan I would think.  plus you can do facetime over 3G instead of just wifi. 

Message 24 of 155
Mentor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

Tidbits wrote:

 

Now that's funny.  You pay for 2 and 2 eat there.  Your newborn isn't eating off a plate right?  Come on be serious here...  If the kid can eat off the plate or be fed food you bet your bottom dollar you'd have to pay something.  That's the only reason why you used a newborn over someone older.

 


Actually that was the best biological/restaraunt analogy that explains tethering I've ever seen.  It makes perfect sense despite your objections.

 

Over all, I'm on the fence on this one.  AT&T can charge what they want for the services rendered, and yet, I really find it odd that AT&T would charge for a feature of the device, not something that they are doing (beyond activating a switch on the device that enables that feature).

 

As far as unlimmited data using a smart phone as a hotspot...  I can 'kind of' see not wanting to allow that occur, as allowing the device to act as a hot spot for 'free', or not charging for a device feature, could conceivably decrease potential new cellular data accounts.  Servicing MULTIPLE devices from a single device, with how the hot spot operates as I understand it, is up to 5 seperate data accounts AT&T would be missing out on, obviously a lot of money.

 

One the flip side, charging extra for tethering only ONE device, the concept I don't agree with (though again I fully acknowledge thta AT&T does have the right to charge for this non-service all they want), as the ONE device effectively shifts the data that would only be going to and processed on your phone to another device.  At no point can you exceed the maximum throughput of the smart phone so no REAL additional/excessive load can occur on the net and since it would be limited to one device, no potential loss on being able to charge for additional data accounts, so charging extra for it seems...  Well greedy.

 

The only reasonable agrument I can see for charging extra for tethering are the cases when someone tethers another device that can act as a hot spot (we're back to the extra data accounts AT&T doesn't get to charge for on those additional devices)...


 

A newborn will never at as much as his/her mother will in the same time span.  A computer CAN and OFTEN eat more than 2-3x in the same timespan as a mobile device.  It doesn't fit at all.  It's a stretch sorry, but his comparision is way off. 

Message 25 of 155
Mentor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


tonester wrote:

 


archermoo wrote:

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

 

Two things:

 

1.  Admittedly, my comment was not clear, I'll clarify below.

2.  What you've quoted was from my thoughts on charging extra for tethering.

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 

For standard use (the phone acts as an 'internet modem' for a single device) tethering there is no additional load, nor any potential 'lost' revenue.  With standard tethering you have your single device, typically a laptop, accessing the internet via the phone, at best, at the maximum possible speed of the phone given the signal qualities of the location you're doing the tethering in.  With a tethered device it's not possible to go beyond the real bandwidth potential of the device, so really, there's no REAL need to charge extra as it's not costing the provider extra in any way.

 

Only when you have that device function as a 'hot spot' does it make any sense at all to charge extra.  There's a potential for 5 devices using the net via the phone, so there's a potential for 4 data accounts that AT&T isn't getting paid for.

 

I get that.  I acknowledge that AT&T would like to mitigate the potential 'loss' of that revenue (though I would argue that there's no REAL expectation that without that mobile hotspot feature that any of those 4 devices would get an AT&T data account to compensate).

 

The ONLY reason I could come up with for AT&T to justify charging for tethering at all (other than, "Just cause we can") is that non-standard tethering, and those technically savvy enough to do it, could tether to another device that would act as a hotspot.

 

The fact that originally AT&T did not grant extra monthly data when paying for tethering is what puts it up in the "greed" category.

 

Users were being forced to pay for a smartphone plan and when they wanted data they had to double their costs, but get no additional monthly data allotment.  I mean come on, that's just fececiously bad.


Except that they aren't charging extra anymore, even for using the phone as a hotspot.  You just have to pay for 4GB of data upfront instead of just 2GB.

 


Which, you'd have to admit, was very shrewd of AT&T--that way, people can't complain that they have to pay extra simply for flipping a switch to allow tethering, so to speak.  Now AT&T is effectively saying, "Here, you pay an additional X dollars up front so that you get a 4 GB allotment instead of 2 GB and we'll essentially throw in the tethering for free".

 


 

Honestly I don't think it's shrewed at all...  The way people are and the way they complain about overages...  There would be a slew of people crying that they went over the 2GB cap and probably wouldn't believe how much their computer can chew through data.

Message 26 of 155
Expert

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?


BIGWHITE2K9 wrote:

Can't you jailbreak your phone & get tethering & keep your unlimited data plan.?  I don't have my phone jailbroken but I know a friend that jailbroke his iphone but since we didn't have 3G at the time it was pointless.  I know I'm fin to get killed for saying the banned "jailbreak" word here.  If I have unlimited internet for $30 & to get tethering I have to pay $45 for 4GB.  Most people would consider jailbreaking there device not to lose the unlimited data plan I would think.  plus you can do facetime over 3G instead of just wifi. 


technically yes, legally no - by doing that you are violating the service agreement that you have with the provider. Guess it just depends on the end user and how they feel about it, you are knowingly violating a legally binding agreement by doing it.

Message 27 of 155
Expert

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?


tonester wrote:

 


archermoo wrote:

 


DimentoGraven wrote:

 

Two things:

 

1.  Admittedly, my comment was not clear, I'll clarify below.

2.  What you've quoted was from my thoughts on charging extra for tethering.

 

For my clarification, it's odd to me that AT&T would charge EXTRA to allow a phone to tether, an inbuilt feature of the phone, when all tethering does is allow data to pass through the phone to another device.  Since, with smart phones and the subject phone of the thread, the iPhone, can tether and really, it has nothing to do with any ADDITIONAL service of AT&T, I find it odd that AT&T would charge to tether.

 

For standard use (the phone acts as an 'internet modem' for a single device) tethering there is no additional load, nor any potential 'lost' revenue.  With standard tethering you have your single device, typically a laptop, accessing the internet via the phone, at best, at the maximum possible speed of the phone given the signal qualities of the location you're doing the tethering in.  With a tethered device it's not possible to go beyond the real bandwidth potential of the device, so really, there's no REAL need to charge extra as it's not costing the provider extra in any way.

 

Only when you have that device function as a 'hot spot' does it make any sense at all to charge extra.  There's a potential for 5 devices using the net via the phone, so there's a potential for 4 data accounts that AT&T isn't getting paid for.

 

I get that.  I acknowledge that AT&T would like to mitigate the potential 'loss' of that revenue (though I would argue that there's no REAL expectation that without that mobile hotspot feature that any of those 4 devices would get an AT&T data account to compensate).

 

The ONLY reason I could come up with for AT&T to justify charging for tethering at all (other than, "Just cause we can") is that non-standard tethering, and those technically savvy enough to do it, could tether to another device that would act as a hotspot.

 

The fact that originally AT&T did not grant extra monthly data when paying for tethering is what puts it up in the "greed" category.

 

Users were being forced to pay for a smartphone plan and when they wanted data they had to double their costs, but get no additional monthly data allotment.  I mean come on, that's just fececiously bad.


Except that they aren't charging extra anymore, even for using the phone as a hotspot.  You just have to pay for 4GB of data upfront instead of just 2GB.

 


Which, you'd have to admit, was very shrewd of AT&T--that way, people can't complain that they have to pay extra simply for flipping a switch to allow tethering, so to speak.  Now AT&T is effectively saying, "Here, you pay an additional X dollars up front so that you get a 4 GB allotment instead of 2 GB and we'll essentially throw in the tethering for free".

 


verizon does the exact same thing - their hotspot is an additional charge and it is capped at 2GB - very shrewd of Verizon would you not agree?

Message 28 of 155
Contributor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

Jailbreak it. Jail breaking is not illegally.

Message 29 of 155
ACE - Professor

Re: Why does tethering my iPhone 4 cost me ANYTHING?

 


acmo5 wrote:

Jailbreak it. Jail breaking is not illegally.


But stealing service is. So, this does nothing for you, unless you're OK with stealing.

 

*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.
Message 30 of 155
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