Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

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Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

I have a iPad with a 2 GB plan.  My billing cycle starts the 3rd of every month.  On March 2nd, I only had used 800 MB of data so I figured downloading a 287.5 MB file would be okay as my usage data would reset the next day.   Well stupid me, the 287.5 MB data counted to the March 3rd to April 2nd billing cycle, not the Feb 3nd to March 2nd billing cycle, despite that AT&T knows that the data was used on March 2nd.

 

I went back and checked my older bills and saw that there was data used from the 2nd of each month on all my bills.  Sometimes data usage would be from the 2nd of the month to the next 2nd, sometimes from the 1st to the 1st of the following month.

 

I called AT&T to complain since AT&T is counting data outside the billing cycle as being part of the billing cycle. I was told that since it takes 24 to 48 hours for data usage to show up in their system, rather then go back and apply data used during the previous billing cycle to that cycle, they simply apply it to the current billing cycle.  Despite the fact that the data wasn't used in that cycle.

 

So basically say your billing date is the 3rd of every month, like mine.  Data from the 2nd of the month (and possibly the 1st) will be applied to that billing cycle.  That's not correct and that shouldn't be happening, but it does.

Message 1 of 17 (14,067 Views)
Employee

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

Usage comes from the cycle that its reported in. Happens with minutes as well.
Employee Contributor*
*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.
Message 2 of 17 (14,028 Views)
Contributor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

I just saw your post after talking with a AT&T Rep. You are correct. My billing Period is 17th of the month. 411mb out of 3072mb, was taken from my new billing period , but the data was used on the 16th. So I am thinking now I only have have 2.6GB remaining to use in my billing period. The Rep explained about the time it takes for DATA to update upto 72 hours. I don't like it because it like living off of next months pay check, bad policy in my view.

Message 3 of 17 (13,821 Views)
Scholar

Re: Data usage from previous billing cycle being added to current

[ Edited ]

 

If a customer is trying to manage their data usage so as to not go over a limit, but it can arbitrarily be charged in a different period, might not be according to contract? 

 

If charges are delayed one month, but not the following month, might that cause 33 or 34 days to be included in charges for the "month"?  I recently saw data charges for 6/01 show up for a billing cycle that starts 6/05 (that's quite a delay).

 

[Edited to comply with Guidelines]

 

 

Message 4 of 17 (13,571 Views)
Employee

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

This happens. No quick fix

Here is how I handle it:
Let's say you have a 200MB plan and you used 180, but 160 posted to that bill and other 20 carried over to next. If you to over that month by 20 or less I credit it. If over 20, you would have gone over anyways so no credit
Employee Contributor*
*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.
Message 5 of 17 (13,544 Views)
Contributor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

Actually, it's even worse than this. I've found that ATT adds data usage from the BEGINNING of the previous cycle to the next cycle, putting me over my limit, then charging me for extra. When I pointed this out to the ATT rep on the phone, she kept trying to change the subject. Finally, she said 'It just takes time for our database to update."

 

What? Are you kidding? Do they do it manually? It doesn't take time for the database to update––they're wrongly moving usage to different cycles in order to bump you over the limit so they can charge you more. This is called fraud.

Message 6 of 17 (7,556 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

It's not fraud at all. It says in in black in white on myAT&T when you log in.. And just paraphrasing here but it says something along the lines of "may take 2-5 days before actual usage is displayed". It's not done manually, it's just a delay in the system. Can they credit it? Probably if you explain to them in a nice way. Not saying it's guaranteed, but saying its purely at their discretion.
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*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 7 of 17 (7,548 Views)
Expert

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current


Evandela wrote:
It's not fraud at all. It says in in black in white on myAT&T when you log in.. And just paraphrasing here but it says something along the lines of "may take 2-5 days before actual usage is displayed". It's not done manually, it's just a delay in the system. Can they credit it? Probably if you explain to them in a nice way. Not saying it's guaranteed, but saying its purely at their discretion.

If roaming data usage it can take up to 60 days to post.

 

 

Message 8 of 17 (7,545 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

That's bull, if I have 2 gigs left on the last day of the cycle and use 2,5 and they pull it off my new cycle believe I'll be going over by 2.5 gigs on the next cycle that is my data that I payed for and no one can have that data but me....it's called theft, guess, whatever. They know when your over and charge...and yes I'll be keeping records so when they try I'll have them. And they can refund my data as well as my money.
Message 9 of 17 (6,425 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

if I have 2 gigs left on the last day of the cycle and use 2,5 and they pull it off my new cycle believe I'll be going over by 2.5 gigs on the next cycle that is my data that I payed for and no one can have that data but me....it's called theft, guess, whatever. They know when your over and charge...and yes I'll be keeping records so when they try I'll have them. And they can refund my data as well as my money.
Message 10 of 17 (6,421 Views)

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

Maybe that explains why for the past 3 months we've been getting charged overages even though we have a 10GB plan and ALL use wifi 99% of the time!!! Seems like ever since the rates went down for the 10GB shared plan I've been charged extra for overages. Good way to make up the difference and make customers think we are getting a deal?
Message 11 of 17 (6,407 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current


hibridwell wrote:
Maybe that explains why for the past 3 months we've been getting charged overages even though we have a 10GB plan and ALL use wifi 99% of the time!!! Seems like ever since the rates went down for the 10GB shared plan I've been charged extra for overages. Good way to make up the difference and make customers think we are getting a deal?

Depending upon your smartphone, you may think you're on wifi, but you're not.  I believe that a Sony phone has an issue with still using cellular data when wifi is available.  I also know that the Apple iPhone will often turn off the wifi when the screen lock is active, and if you are busy streaming musc, but your phone locks, you could easily switch to using cellular data even though you think you are (or should be) using wifi.  Often these are not AT&T issues, they are issues with the phone manufacturer.  I believe that at least one phone maker had the hardware using the best network connection available assuming that wifi will be faster than cellular.  With LTE becoming common, it is not unheard of for the cellular data to be faster than the wifi, so now the phone may stay on cellular even though wifi is available...


Jerry B.
"GeekBoy"

--

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*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 12 of 17 (6,397 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

That is exactly how the matter should be handled.  To go further, AT&T needs to take ownership of this substantial, reoccurring problem and re-write their software so that data usage is applied to the actual date it was accrued.   A customer should not have to exert time and energy to correct what is ultimately, AT&T's area of responsibility.

 

Unfortunately, too many AT&T employees either don't want to acknowledge the issue or are ignorant about it.  I spoke to a technical support supervisor recently who had the audacity to insist that mobile data usage dates and times are "always" accurate regardless of when the figures are published on AT&T's website or via myAT&T app.

Message 13 of 17 (5,631 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

Actually, if customers are within the limits of their monthly data allotment but are being billed as if they have exceeded their data usage, "fraud" is exactly the correct term for AT&T's actions. The fact remains that customers are not receiving what they have paid for.

 

Here's an analogy.  Someone rents a car for a four day time period from 4:00 PM on Monday, the 1st of September to Thursday, the 4th of September.  They return the rental vehicle a few minutes prior to 4:00 PM on September 4.  The car rental company's software does not update until after 4:00 PM, thus erroneously showing that the rental car was returned after 4:00 PM instead of prior to 4:00 PM.  As a result, the customer is charged another day's rental on a car they have already returned.

 

If AT&T will not fix their data recording software so that the day and/or time of data usage is reflected accurately, the customer is not at fault.  Since it can be easily proved that AT&T's data usage dates are not accurate, both through AT&T's technical support department's own admission, as well as through elementary and repeated test results, the burden of proof rests with AT&T, not the customer.

 

It does not matter how long it takes for the data usage for any particular day to be displayed.  What matters is the actual date of usage.

Message 14 of 17 (5,606 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data usage from prevous billing cycle being added to current

I recently conducted an experiment in order to approximate as accurately as possible, how much data I would consume when viewing streaming live video from an application or web browser.

 

I made certain that my phone’s mobile data was turned off until I performed the first of two separate tests on the last day of my billing cycle.  The first test began at 4:00 PM and lasted for precisely five minutes.  Mobile data was shut off after the conclusion of this test until the second test began at 6:00 PM.  The second test lasted 10 minutes.

 

At about 8:00 PM, I contacted AT&T technical support to receive further information about data usage amounts during video streaming. The technical support representative informed me that my data usage tallies for the last day of my billing cycle would be available at 12:00 AM.  At midnight I logged into my AT&T account but my data usage had not yet been published.  In the morning I again logged into my online AT&T account.  A data amount had been posted at 12:30 AM.  More importantly, all of the data utilized on the last day of my previous billing cycle was now being applied to the first day of my new billing cycle. I immediately knew that AT&T’s records regarding the date of data usage were in error.

 

I contacted AT&T technical support for an explanation of why my data usage was applied to the wrong day. I was immediately surprised by how difficult it was for the AT&T representative I spoke with to comprehend what seemed to me to be a very simple misstep.  After a discussion, the representative from AT&T’s technical support department said the matter was a billing issue, not a technical support issue.

 

It was onward to AT&Ts billing department for hopefully, a favorable resolution to the error.

It is worthy to note that practically every support person I spoke with from AT&T, from line employee to supervisor to manager, condescendingly instructed me how to program my Samsung smartphone to avoid going above my data allotment for the month.  I had to reiterate over and over again that I had not gone over my data usage. In fact, in the four years I have been an AT&T customer I have never exceeded my data usage amounts.

 

An AT&T rep. admitted that my issue with data being posted to the incorrect day was a common one.  The time that it takes AT&T’s software to process data usage figures can result in the figures mistakenly being attributed to a subsequent day.

 

Since I wasn’t getting anyone from AT&T’s technical support or billing departments to fully understand or do anything to correct the issue, I decided to table the matter until the next day.

 

I continued my quest for an answer to AT&T’s data record inaccuracies with another person in AT&T technical support. I found it very disconcerting the number of times AT&T customer service applied the “blame the victim” response in my case. For example, I was told to avoid using data on the last day of my billing cycle having the foreknowledge that this type of error could occur.  I assert that if I am careful enough to responsibly monitor my data usage, I should be able to use the data I paid for on any day of my billing cycle with the confidence that AT&T will calculate and report the usage records accurately.  As a customer, I believe that is the least that AT&T can assure.

 

I knew that the data totals for a given day were recorded by my Galaxy Note 3 and could be retrieved fairly easily. I was transferred to level 2 technical support and was told by the AT&T representative that the data logs recorded on my phone would be more accurate than those found on the AT&T website.

 

In order to help insure my credibility, I permitted the AT&T technical support person to remote control my phone with the use of an AT&T app so she could see exactly what appeared on my screen.

 

On her instructions, I filtered my data usage graph so that only the results for the particular day I conducted the usage test were shown. I carefully noted the amount of data reported expended on that day.

 

The AT&T technical support person then asked me to retrieve the results for the next day, the day that AT&T’s records claimed I actually used the data.  On that day, my phone’s internal data usage scale showed 0.00 megabytes used. I thought I had revealed the proof I was seeking.

 

To my amazement, that’s when the AT&T technical support representative changed her tune and told me that AT&T’s records would always be more accurate than those within my phone. She completely contradicted herself once the record showed a discrepancy that discredited AT&T’s figures. Please permit me to remind the forum readers, I am not disputing the amount of data used on that day. However, I do emphatically contend that AT&T’s method of time and date reporting is 100% in error.

 

Of the half dozen or so AT&T customer service representatives I spoke with in regards to this difficulty, not one said they would or could correct the error.  The most I was able to achieve (after my civil yet firm request) was a notation in my account that could be applied if I happen to exceed my data usage by as much or less than the amount that was incorrectly applied to my current billing cycle.  I have every intention of not going over my data consumption this month. Though I have almost 200 megabytes that is owed to me because of AT&T’s blunder, the possibility of dealing with a less than customer oriented billing representative may not be worth the hassle of trying to state my case all over again.

 

Though it should not be my burden, if I conduct any more data usage tests I have decided not to do so on the final day of my billing cycle until AT&T fixes their shoddy record keeping.

 

AT&T should diligently and responsibly address this matter swiftly so their customers can avoid the inequitable consequences of further inaccuracies caused by AT&T’s flawed recordkeeping and malfunctioning software.  In the meantime, AT&T can slightly lessen the sting by forthrightly accepting responsibility for any customer account history inaccuracies.

 

What AT&T unjustifiably takes from the customer with apparent effortlessness, AT&T should be able to return to the customer just as easily.

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