THE US FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION (FTC) has accused AT&T of intentionally throttling the connections of millions of customers on unlimited data plans, an accusation that the network has denied.
The FTC has filed a federal complaint against AT&T, accusing the carrier of "deceptively" misleading its smartphone customers by charging for unlimited data while reducing their data speeds by up to 90 percent.
According to the FTC complaint, AT&T did not adequately explain to customers with unlimited data plans that the service would be throttled if they reached a certain amount of data during a billing cycle, and did not inform customers of the policy when they renewed their unlimited contracts.
AT&T stopped offering unlimited data plans several years ago, but has allowed those already signed up for unlimited internet to retain their tariffs.
FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez said in a statement: "AT&T promised its customers 'unlimited' data, and in many instances it has failed to deliver on that promise. The issue here is simple: 'unlimited' means unlimited."
The accusation claims that AT&T has throttled the connections of 3.5 million customers more than 25 million times.
AT&T has denied misleading its customers, saying in a statement: "We have been completely transparent with customers since the very beginning.
"We informed all unlimited data-plan customers via bill notices and a national press release that resulted in nearly 2,000 news stories well before the programme was implemented."
This isn't the only time AT&T has found itself in hot water recently. The firm was slapped with a $105m fine earlier this month for overcharging its mobile customers. µ
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