I watched with interest as the news broke yesterday afternoon that O2 was to stop offering unlimited data to smartphone users, like AT&T has done in the US.
“This can’t be fair”, “I know people who only stick with O2 because the data is unlimited!” and so it went on.
The fact of the matter is that the mobile networks all struggle to keep up with the ludicrous volumes of data downloaded through mobile connections in the UK (mostly tethered to a laptop at home I have no doubt). The BBC report I read said that 3% of O2’s customers are using 36% of the network’s data capacity! Capacity which you’ll probably know is borrowed from the voice traffic on the same network. If you’ve ever wondered why mobile calls are harder to place and receive look no further than the nearest iPhone.
I use an iPhone for voice and data when I’m away from the office and warmly welcome actions which make the service better for the vast majority of users.
On the flip side the appetite for unlimited fully-mobile data at screaming-data-rates is a good sign for the industry. It will be satisfied when the networks are enhanced with the best that the next generation technology developers can provide, and it will probably give us a living for years to come.