General Question

cirrina's avatar

Have you heard of AT&T reacting negatively, so far, in any case of unauthorized iPhone tethering?

Asked by cirrina (187points) January 16th, 2009

I’ve been advising people that if you tether you should do two things:
1) stick with light usage (to be a good neighbor, and to avoid rubbing it in AT&T’s face by creating any measurable strain on the network in your immediate area); and
2) understand you’re doing it at your own risk (because it violates the TOS).

But I was recently challenged to come up with any example of actual “risk” so far. I haven’t googled it much, but I’m reaching out to see if you’ve noticed anything.

I think AT&T might start more actively trying to prevent unauthorized tethering once they start offering tethering as a paid option (although it’s not clear how they would do this across the board, given the various tethering solutions people have). What do you think?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

6 Answers

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

Does “tethering” = “stealing” as in getting something you’re not paying for, which ultimately drives up costs for those that do pay?

cirrina's avatar

Let’s not get derailed: it’s the exact same data. Person A transfers 100MB in a month using only her iPhone; person B transfers 100MB in the same month using a combination of her iPhone and her iPhone tethered to her computer. Exactly the same effect on the network. Does not “drive up costs.” The vast majority of people tethering (both officially and otherwise) will be using it so intermittently that it has no measurable effect.

funkdaddy's avatar

I don’t think alfreda was getting “derailed”, just asking what tethering was all about.

It’s just a way to route your phone’s connection to the internet through your laptop (or conceivably a desktop) so you can connect on their network wirelessly wherever you are. Since 3G has become more widespread, the speeds are higher so it’s actually a decent option for people to use when they’re away from a free wifi connection. AT&T offers data plans specifically for use with laptops, while the iPhone plans have unlimited data at a lower cost but aren’t supposed to be used that way.

To me, it’s the equivalent of putting a wireless router on your cable modem at home rather than paying for their “special” wireless service which is essentially the same thing. I think as long as your not going crazy with it and don’t call them to support it, it’s not worth their time to seek you out.

That’s just an opinion though, I really don’t know how aggressively they’ll go after obvious cases and what exactly their recourse would be.

tonedef's avatar

There are rumors in the internets about AT&T introducing a tethering plan, which would be $30 a month. If, and once, this occurs, AT&T would definitely have an interest in cracking down on people using NetShare or tethering through jailbreaking. This is, frankly, ludicrous, as data is data, and there’s already a cap of 5 gb (I think) for “unlimited data” AT&T plans.

Until AT&T introduces an alternative, I’d say to go for it, but within the restrictions you suggested- light use. Once that alternative is available… still use netshare. Or demand a refund or unlock your phone and use a T-Mobile plan instead :)

bob's avatar

Is it still possible to put netshare on an iPhone (without jailbreaking)?

tonedef's avatar

@bob, I don’t believe it is. I am not aware of a way to install applications other than through the iTunes store or the App store on the device.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther