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Debate on whether you should offload smartphone data on WiFi, even though you pay for "unlimited"


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it was sarcasm.

 

here is a legitimate point;

 

- we all pay for use of a shared service, we can use that service where ever it is provided for anything within the law and terms of service, and we don't have to use wifi, at our home or anywhere else. Period.

 

Would it be nice? Nice for who? I suppose that depends on the performance of the wifi/connection in question. Is it required? no.

 

Is everyone that doesn't have home wifi a bad person? if not why not?

 

Is everyone that has a home wifi and doesn't offload to it a bad person? apparently it seems from this thread.

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use <> abuse

 

Oh wait, even 'use' will cause the collapse of the world as we know it.

 

I'm not sure what you're saying here with the "use<>abuse" line.

 

VZ was faster way before the newly instituted caps and tiered pricing.

 

And from posts and pictures posted, it does not look like the caps and tiered pricing is doing all that effective a job of preventing the bandwidth-opocalype.

 

Before people began piling on Sprint's network (pre-2010), I was getting amazing speeds pretty much wherever I went. Then people began taking advantage of the cheap, Verizon-like service without a care in the world thinking that nothing bad would happen.

 

Raising prices will have little to do with the bandwidth used, and more to do with competition (or lack of) and how much the average consumer will pay before churning elsewhere.

 

You don't, I don't, but apparently there are alot of vz and att customers that disagree.

 

If more people begin using the network and maxing it out, that will result in increased network upgrade/maintenance costs. These costs eventually get transferred down to the consumers. But I will concede that a significant portion of prices might be based in competition.

 

it was sarcasm.

 

here is a legitimate point;

 

- we all pay for use of a shared service, we can use that service where ever it is provided for anything within the law and terms of service, and we don't have to use wifi, at our home or anywhere else. Period.

 

Would it be nice? Nice for who? I suppose that depends on the performance of the wifi/connection in question. Is it required? no.

 

Uhh... Nice for the people who don't have access to the Wi-Fi connection that you do?

 

Is everyone that doesn't have home wifi a bad person? if not why not?

 

No, this just puts them in the same category as people who don't have access to Wi-Fi.

 

Is everyone that has a home wifi and doesn't offload to it a bad person? apparently it seems from this thread.

 

Yes. Please explain how by not offloading when you can you are not negatively impacting someone else's quality of service?

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This offshoot thread has been filled with a lot of bluster. As a counter to that, here are some constructive ideas:

  • Sprint should retain unlimited data for all qualifying plans.
  • Instead of penalizing those subs who use a lot of on network data, Sprint should incentivize subs to offload and/or use less on network data by crediting back at least the $10 Premium Data fee to subs who use less than 1 GB on network in any given month.
  • At the other end of the spectrum, Sprint should actively oust with prejudice those abusive subs who use unlimited data to violate the Ts and Cs.

AJ

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How are things in the land of How-it-should-be-is-the-way-it-is? It’s been a while since my last trip.

 

Let’s take this to the extreme and see what would happen if everyone adopts your mentality. Everyone thinks that, since they pay for Sprint’s service, they shouldn’t need to use their own Wi-Fi (despite the fact that they also pay for it…whatever) out of principle. It’s a good thing that people never ride bikes for transportation when they’re paying for car insurance.

 

In the case where they’re within range of a shared public spot, like Starbucks, they still think that, out of principle, they shouldn’t take advantage of a FREE service being offered to them because they’re paying for something already. You would be wise not to accept a ride from a friend if you have your own vehicle; automakers need to learn to meet the demand of consumers to such a degree that nobody would ever need to share a ride.

 

If you have immediate access to the car your paying for you can either ride with your friend or drive your own....totally your choice. Now if I don't have access to the car I'm paying (a $10 premium data charge) for anyway...then it's in my best interest to accept the free ride (Wi-Fi). In short, NOT using the service I am paying for to the fullest won't benefit me at all. Collectively it may offset Sprint's network but that won't necessarily translate into some benefit for me or all customers for that matter...especially when Sprint can decide to suspend unlimited data or raise their prices whenever they choose too. As for me...if I'm in an area where Wi-Fi is faster than the mobile network then I'll offset...outside of that...I believe I'll use the service (speed) I've been paying for for years but only recently have been able to take advantage of.

 

Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk 2

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I'm not sure what you're saying here with the "use<>abuse" line.

 

use does not equal abuse.

 

if all users are 'using' a service within the parameters of acceptable use, no one user is more important than another. I am not expecting anyone else to cede their bandwidth by offloading, any more than anyone should expect me do the same. If by both (or all of us) cause a network degradation to occur, that is not any of our individual faults, its a fault with any number of issues involving technical, economical limitations and/ business decisions of the provider (ie sprint)

 

 

Before people began piling on Sprint's network (pre-2010), I was getting amazing speeds pretty much wherever I went. Then people began taking advantage of the cheap, Verizon-like service without a care in the world thinking that nothing bad would happen.

 

And this is relevant how? because more people were *using* the network (not necessarily *abusing* it), more powerful and capable phones became available, and sprint failed to allocate proper maintenance and upgrades in a timely manner?

 

If more people begin using the network and maxing it out, that will result in increased network upgrade/maintenance costs. These costs eventually get transferred down to the consumers. But I will concede that a significant portion of prices might be based in competition.

 

this inevitable given the current trend from pc/home use, towards highly powerful mobile phones and tablets.

 

Uhh... Nice for the people who don't have access to the Wi-Fi connection that you do?

 

in this whole thread, I don't think I mentioned once whether I have wifi or not but thank you for assuming!

 

As I recall, this all started when I stated that I have a 3 meg dsl and that wimax was normally much faster.

 

 

No, this just puts them in the same category as people who don't have access to Wi-Fi.

 

Ok, so I guess the folks don't have home wifi suck as much the people who do, but don't offload to it. :P

 

 

Yes. Please explain how by not offloading when you can you are not negatively impacting someone else's quality of service?

 

I guess it boils down to this, no one else cares about my quality of service, and I certainly am not concerning myself with others quality of service. When quality of service is bad, I blame the provider for failing to provide adequate services for *all* the affected users.

 

I guess this makes me a bad person. Sorry I offended everyone's sensibilities.

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If you have immediate access to the car your paying for you can either ride with your friend or drive your own....totally your choice. Now if I don't have access to the car I'm paying (a $10 premium data charge) for anyway...then it's in my best interest to accept the free ride (Wi-Fi).

 

But you should ride share whenever possible! /grin

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Sprint can decide to suspend unlimited data or raise their prices whenever they choose to

 

Yes, and customers with your mindset will cause it to happen sooner.

 

if I'm in an area where Wi-Fi is faster than the mobile network then I'll offset

 

You should be willing to use WiFi, even if it is slower than the mobile network, if that slower speed meets your needs. For instance, if you are streaming Netflix to your smartphone, and you have a 3Mbps DSL service, then WiFi is way more than ample to handle that. Using the mobile network would be wasteful in this instance.

 

In an instance where you were doing something that may need something faster than 3Mbps at home on your smartphone (but I can't imagine what that is), then I can understand why you may use your mobile network at times. However, if you consistently need faster speeds of highly consumptive data, then you should look to another home ISP solution.

 

I guess I'm warming to data caps more and more after debating the craziness in this thread. That way you can do whatever you want with your data within your tier. Heck, you can even tether. And I won't care. I'm beginning to think you guys can't handle the responsibility of unlimited data. It's not a service, it's a shared resource, and there is responsibility. And if this mindset is as pervasive as I fear, our unlimited days are numbered.

 

Robert

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This offshoot thread has been filled with a lot of bluster. As a counter to that, here are some constructive ideas:

  • Sprint should retain unlimited data for all qualifying plans.
  • Instead of penalizing those subs who use a lot of on network data, Sprint should incentivize subs to offload and/or use less on network data by crediting back at least the $10 Premium Data fee to subs who use less than 1 GB on network in any given month.
  • At the other end of the spectrum, Sprint should actively oust with prejudice those abusive subs who use unlimited data to violate the Ts and Cs.

AJ

 

Sounds like a plan to me. I have no issue with offloading if I'm compensated for the inconvenience :)

 

I would contend, however, that if the bell curve was too far in the direction of network abuse, Sprint would be doing the cost-benefit analysis and, as a result, offering some other data package than it does now. I would say that they could offer 4GB, including tethering, for the effectively-$30 per month that they charge for data, but then they couldn't use tethering as a profit center for folks like me. Though $30 for 4GB is a very reasonable amount from a carrier profit perspective; I have a friend who has just that plan on VZW, thanks to Double Data several months back.

 

But instead, Sprint has chosen to run the unlimited gambit and play the numbers game. They (and T-Mobile) are better able to do this since cell site densities are greater (so heavy users on one site don't impact as many users overall) so I suppose it's the right engineering + marketing decision for them. Just like it's a solid decision for a local cellular company to offer slow (1 Mbps for $40, 2 Mbps for $60), uncapped fixed service using Airspan pre-LTE gear on what I'm guessing is their 700MHz lower-B license, using the same backhaul network that they just rolled out to support both that and a CLR-band HSPA/+ network.

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I guess this makes me a bad person. Sorry I offended everyone's sensibilities.

 

You are allowed to have a differing opinion. And everyone else certainly can debate your points. But I am starting to tire of this kind of childishness. Please refrain from this and stand up for your points.

 

Robert

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But instead, Sprint has chosen to run the unlimited gambit and play the numbers game.

 

I agree with AJ's take. Sprint has no choice but to offer unlimited. It's not a gambit, it's survival.

 

Robert

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...and for what it's worth, if anyone here is abusing Sprint's network to the point that it makes life uncomfortable for other subs...and Sprint is losing money on that subscriber (i.e. they have to add another LTE carrier to a site due to that one subscriber), Sprint will figure out a way to kick that sub off the network due to an AUP violation. If they're on Clear WiMAX, Clear will magically throttle the sub and won't tell why. All this only really becomes a problem when someone decides to absolutely thrash the cellular network in an area that's expensive/impossible to add capacity into, and can't be gotten rid of easily. Pulling down 6GB in a month ain't gonna be that tipping point.

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...and for what it's worth, if anyone here is abusing Sprint's network to the point that it makes life uncomfortable for other subs...and Sprint is losing money on that subscriber (i.e. they have to add another LTE carrier to a site due to that one subscriber), Sprint will figure out a way to kick that sub off the network due to an AUP violation. If they're on Clear WiMAX, Clear will magically throttle the sub and won't tell why. All this only really becomes a problem when someone decides to absolutely thrash the cellular network in an area that's expensive/impossible to add capacity into, and can't be gotten rid of easily. Pulling down 6GB in a month ain't gonna be that tipping point.

 

The point that I believe is being made here is an aggregate drain on the network by all the people who do not even attempt to offload, even when it is convenient for them, out of principle, spite or ignorance.

 

It's not the resources of any one person makes on the network. It's when dozens of users per sector refuse to offload when they could. It is especially going to worsen when LTE arrives, because LTE will be faster than half of customers have for a home ISP. Many of them will reason that they should just use the faster network (like Proxcee says above), even if they don't need the faster speeds.

 

Like I discussed earlier tonight, the pass/fail capacity performance threshold is too close together for LTE. That once you cross the line in capacity, the aggregate amount of users wasting the resource becomes really a factor. Because if you could get 25% of that tonnage to offload, you are right back into pass performance for the sector. This really is a big deal, and the abusers don't get it.

 

Robert

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The point that I believe is being made here is an aggregate drain on the network by all the people who do not even attempt to offload, even when it is convenient for them, out of principle, spite or ignorance.

 

It's not the resources of any one person makes on the network. It's when dozens of users per sector refuse to offload when they could. It is especially going to worsen when LTE arrives, because LTE will be faster than half of customers have for a home ISP. Many of them will reason that they should just use the faster network (like Proxcee says above), even if they don't need the faster speeds.

 

Like I discussed earlier tonight, the pass/fail capacity performance threshold is too close together for LTE. That once you cross the line in capacity, the aggregate amount of users wasting the resource becomes really a factor. Because if you could get 25% of that tonnage to offload, you are right back into pass performance for the sector. This really is a big deal, and the abusers don't get it.

 

Robert

 

Nor is anyone willing to break the news to them, since it would necessitate admitting that even Sprint's (or T-Mobile's) 4G networks could crack under load.

 

In an ideal world, widespread FTTH (fiber to the home, like FiOS or, better, EPBFi from Chattanooga's Electric Power Board) would provide users with a good reason to offload: their home WiFi would be faster than the cell network, even on 4G. Is it Sprint's fault that this isn't so? No, but it's a contributing factor to this issue, with expensive cable and slow DSL.

 

What's entertaining is that this ideal world exists in France, thanks to free.fr. Their service is cheap, urban-focused (T-Mobile anyone?) and uses custom set top boxes such that a Free mobile subscriber can get WiFi in a ton of places. I hear the next revision of the STB will include a femtocell. But apparently being both a FTTH provider and a wireless company isn't in vogue in the US...

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the abusers don't get it.

 

This has been a recurring theme through the thread, that anyone who does not offload is an abuser.

 

I disagree with this mentality. While I appreciate and understand that offloading usage on to non-cellular networks is healthier than not, this does mean that the folks do don't are abusers or criminals or out to take advantage.

 

The fact that sprint has unlimited data is irrelevant, I would be have the same argument regarding data uses on capped/tiered att/vz services.

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This has been a recurring theme through the thread' date=' that anyone who does not offload is an abuser.

 

I disagree with this mentality. While I appreciate and understand that offloading usage on to non-cellular networks is healthier than not, this does mean that the folks do don't are abusers or criminals or out to take advantage.

 

The fact that sprint has unlimited data is irrelevant, I would be have the same argument regarding data uses on capped/tiered att/vz services.[/quote']

 

It is my opinion that people who could offload, understand what they are doing, but choose not to are abusers. Yes, you have picked up on a theme. And I support your ability to disagree with my assessment.

 

Robert via Samsung Galaxy S-III 32GB using Forum Runner

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Nor is anyone willing to break the news to them' date=' since it would necessitate admitting that even Sprint's (or T-Mobile's) 4G networks could crack under load.

 

In an ideal world, widespread FTTH (fiber to the home, like FiOS or, better, EPBFi from Chattanooga's Electric Power Board) would provide users with a good reason to offload: their home WiFi would be faster than the cell network, even on 4G. Is it Sprint's fault that this isn't so? No, but it's a contributing factor to this issue, with expensive cable and slow DSL.

 

What's entertaining is that this ideal world exists in France, thanks to free.fr. Their service is cheap, urban-focused (T-Mobile anyone?) and uses custom set top boxes such that a Free mobile subscriber can get WiFi in a ton of places. I hear the next revision of the STB will include a femtocell. But apparently being both a FTTH provider and a wireless company isn't in vogue in the US...[/quote']

 

This is a whole 'nother subject, but I can agree with you on this one. We have insufficient broadband infrastructure and competition in most of the country. Especially in the rurals. I am a big proponent of rural broadband and telco advocacy.

 

Robert via Samsung Galaxy S-III 32GB using Forum Runner

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Ok, then so by yours and others comments, that if sprint had data caps and/or tiered pricing, it would be perfectly ok to use as much cellular data as you could afford.

 

If so, this makes zero sense, because the excessive usage still affects other users and causes the same network degradation.

 

If not, this becomes not an issue of unlimited data usage, but the fact that cellular technology and providers have not kept up with the user demand (be it spectrum/technology limits or business decisions).

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I have (hopefully) one final thing to say on the matter;

 

Let's say, in an ideal world where we get 100% users offloading their data usage.

 

Then what is the point of paying for sprint service?

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I have (hopefully) one final thing to say on the matter;

 

Let's say, in an ideal world where we get 100% users offloading their data usage.

 

Then what is the point of paying for sprint service?

 

You aren't listening to people in this thread, by not using your phone's internet connection, you get to keep unlimited data... on your phone! Pretty amazing huh? And you of course get to pay for it. :lol::P

 

A lot of people on here haven't really been stuck with telco monopoly of an ISP, for example centurylink, some days it works, some days it doesn't, when it does work sometimes it lets me watch youtube, other days it too slow. Once (if, a big if) 800 Mhz LTE comes to my area, there is no way that I'm using wifi on my phone.

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No one is telling you to never use your sprint data. What people are advocating is offloading when you have the ability, so others can use the shared resource. I do not think anyone here wants to lose unlimited data, and people abusing the network will make that happen sooner than necessary. Whole reason ATT went to tier data was to get heavy users to pay their fair share. If you are okay with that model, then ATT/Verizon/Tmobile would be more than happy to have you, however if you like the ability to not worry how much data you are using, then being responsible and not "abusing" is not unreasonable.

 

I am currently an ATT customer, who is on a tier data plan, that hates having to basically control myself when it comes to using my phone, so I do not go over my data limit. I used to think like you, but moving to tiered data sobered me up from that thinking real quick. It sucks, when you gotta refrain from downloading an app or listening to pandora for fear of getting hit with outrageous data overages.

 

I do not believe anyone here it trying to attack you for your views, and only want to show you why that way of thinking is not the best, if you want to keep your unlimited data. Also if you feel sprint is forcing a data plan on you, then why not get a 7in tablet or the Galaxy Player or iPod Touch. All the functionality of a Phone without the Data plan.

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Please read #89.

 

advocating offloading data = not using data on the sprint network (for any specific period of time).

 

2 examples;

 

1) a highly dense industrial area with a high amount of subscribers, lets say there is no wifi available for 'offloading'.

 

 

2) a highly dense residential area with a high amount of subscribers, lets say a majority of them are 'offloading' to their own home wifi networks.

 

area 1 is over-subscribed, and with no wifi available to offload, data degraded and unreliable.

 

 

 

area 2 is over-subscribed and even with a majority offloading data to non-sprint wifi networks, data is degraded and unreliable.

 

 

According to #90 and others, everyone in area 2 that is not already offloading is 'an abuser'.

 

Yet, area 1 which has the same over-subscription problem but no wifi, everyone is not an 'abuser'.

 

 

That seems to sum up the whole thread.

 

I've been into networking of one type or another for 20+ years. Networks are designed to be used. Saying someone is an abuser simply because they have a choice *not* to use the network but continue to use it, is anti-thesis to the whole point of even having a network in the first place.

 

Let us take this whole offloading thing to it's logical conclusion.

 

Sprint sends an update to all phones, which force wifi always on, and if there is any type of wifi connection within range, it will disable cellular data. Since your phone doesn't understand whether you do or don't have access to those particular wifi, it doesn't care and will summarily disable your data until you move out of wifi range.

 

"Sprint, the now network with unlimited data, as long as you offload your data to the nearest wifi hotspot."

 

offloading (even in aggregate) is not going to magically fix over-subscription or lack of sufficient upgrades.

 

Not offloading, even if you are able to, does not make magically make you an abuser, simply a user just like everyone else..

 

I'm out of this topic (again, hopefully).

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Yes, and customers with your mindset will cause it to happen sooner.

 

 

 

You should be willing to use WiFi, even if it is slower than the mobile network, if that slower speed meets your needs. For instance, if you are streaming Netflix to your smartphone, and you have a 3Mbps DSL service, then WiFi is way more than ample to handle that. Using the mobile network would be wasteful in this instance.

 

In an instance where you were doing something that may need something faster than 3Mbps at home on your smartphone (but I can't imagine what that is), then I can understand why you may use your mobile network at times. However, if you consistently need faster speeds of highly consumptive data, then you should look to another home ISP solution.

 

I guess I'm warming to data caps more and more after debating the craziness in this thread. That way you can do whatever you want with your data within your tier. Heck, you can even tether. And I won't care. I'm beginning to think you guys can't handle the responsibility of unlimited data. It's not a service, it's a shared resource, and there is responsibility. And if this mindset is as pervasive as I fear, our unlimited days are numbered.

 

Robert

 

I do see your point to a certain extent...however...I don't think that our unlimited days will be numbered because customers use too much data and certainly not because customers choose not to cap themselves. I believe that the only reason we are enjoying unlimited data is because of Sprint's position in the market. Once that improves...look out! If they were #1 in terms of an LTE footprint or total net subscribers there would be no such thing as unlimited data for Sprint customers.

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When I take into consideration how expensive my isp comcast is and how great of a value sprint is, im far more eager to push comcast for usage as much as possible. I hate paying for a connection thats suppose to be 12- 16mb and usually tops out at 6-8 mb but that the cable nazi for ya... so for me , assessing the value of each providers pricing should be a part of your decision of who to push your usage to when given a choice....

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I know a person I am debating feels like they have lost when they start saying things like:

 

- I guess I am just stupid.

- And they jump to extreme positions like, "I guess no one should use any Sprint data"

 

No one as ever suggested that you not be allowed to use your Sprint data. I say, use an unlimited amount of Sprint data on your smartphone. However, at times you can offload your data on your personal WiFi (as long as your personal WiFi performs to what your needs are on your phone at the time), then you should use it.

 

I have never advocated in this thread that you should use your personal WiFi if it is not fast enough for the task you are trying to do.

 

Robert via CM9 Kindle Fire using Forum Runner

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