This was the day many Verizon Wireless users had been waiting for, the ground-breaking iPhone was finally available for the Verizon system. However, before the fireworks show ended, the carrier with the highly rated network envied by many an AT&T subscriber dropped a little bomb on new customers. Verizon Wireless would be watching how much data each consumer used... and penalizing those who use what they deem too much bandwidth.
"Verizon Wireless strives to provide customers the best experience when using our network, a shared resource among tens of millions of customers. To help achieve this, if you use an extraordinary amount of data and fall within the top 5 percent of Verizon Wireless data users we may reduce your data throughput speeds periodically for the remainder of your then current and immediately following billing cycle to ensure high quality network performance for other users at locations and times of peak demand. Our proactive management of the Verizon Wireless network is designed to ensure that the remaining 95 percent of data customers aren't negatively affected by the inordinate data consumption of just a few users."
So, if the company happens to find you in the top 5% of users on the Verizon data network, they will put a limiter on your account for the remainder of the current month AND the following month. You are digitally grounded for over a month!
But wait - there's more! Verizon is also using something called transcoding that will allow them to change the quality of data you are transmitting across their network. Of course VZW is saying that the compression technology used in transcoding will have no effect on the files you send. Right.
The official explanation;
"We are implementing optimization and transcoding technologies in our network to transmit data files in a more efficient manner to allow available network capacity to benefit the greatest number of users. These techniques include caching less data, using less capacity, and sizing the video more appropriately for the device. The optimization process is agnostic to the content itself and to the website that provides it. While we invest much effort to avoid changing text, image, and video files in the compression process and while any change to the file is likely to be indiscernible, the optimization process may minimally impact the appearance of the file as displayed on your device."
OK, let's review the day's news;
Verizon gets the iPhone 4 (not a new model, but the same one released last summer)
Verizon sets new policy that will penalize top 5% of data users with a digital "time out" that lasts a month or more
Verizon also let's users know that the data they do send may be altered via something called "transcoding"
Before locking yourself into a two-year contract, it might be best to arm yourself with as much information as possible.