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AT&T Will Force Jailbroken iPhone Hotspot Users Into Tiered Data Plans

Some time ago to the dismay of many users, phone carrier AT&T took their unlimited plans off the table. Despite of that, those who are subscribed to the plan prior to being axed are most likely still enjoying their all-you-can-eat bandwidth buffet. Because of this grandfather clause, subscribers who gets to keep those unlimited plans, gets to do so until they proceed to sign another contract. Although if they had their iPhone jailbroken, then that's another story.

iPhone Tethering
According to a report of 9to5Mac, they received a tip from some of their readers. It states AT&T will forcibly move subscribers who are using jailbroken iPhones to tether off the carrier's unlimited data plans (those who are under the grandfather clause) into tiered data plans. According to a reader's tip-off:

I was just informed that as of Thursday August 11th 2011, if you use MyWi or any tethering on the phone or using the phone as a modem, AT&T will automatically change ur unlimited plan to a 2Gb tethering plan for 45 dollars without the customers consent. This is for those who received emails or texts about the use of tethering without an AT&T tethering plan.

For those who are not aware, AT&T is currently offering a service that allows users to use their device as a wireless hotspot which a maximum of five users can connect and make use of the network's 3G connectivity. This particular hotspot solution will set you back about $20 per month on top of the cost of your monthly data plan. But if you have a jailbroken iPhone you will have access to unauthorized tool such as MyWi which lets you have a hotspot solution for absolutely no cost at all.

Now it turns out that AT&T is already on the case and is set on cutting the fun short for jailbroken users who utilizes these unauthorized hotspot solution. A spokesperson has confirmed this particular move of AT&T but the definite cutoff date was not detailed:

Earlier this year, we began sending letters, emails, and text messages to a small number of smartphone customers who use their devices for tethering but aren’t on our required tethering plan.  Our goal here is fairness for all of our customers.  (This impacts a only small percentage of our smartphone customer base.)

The letters outline three choices:

  1. Stop tethering and keep their current plan (including grandfathered unlimited plan)
  2. Proactively call AT&T or visit our stores and move to the required tethering plan
  3. Do nothing and we’ll go ahead and add the tethering plan on their behalf — after the dated noted in their customer notification.

iPhone AT&T
So basically, those who are using unauthorized hotspot solutions have these three options regarding the situation. This particular action of AT&T may quite be on the outrageous side but it is still understandable. There have been many iPhones that are being used as unauthorized bandwidth vacuum and one can only imagine that this setup is not AT&T's definition of good business.

If you are one of the few who's still under the carrier's unlimited data plans, then you might want to stop tethering for now and start looking for an alternative. Well if you care about keeping your unlimited data plan, that is. [via 9to5Mac]

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