AT&T Mobility’s Recently Uncovered Patent Filing Delivers Technology Beyond Your Wildest Imagination
AT&T, the former market-leader in exclusive contracts with Apple, has yet to officially announce next big thing, but recently uncovered US Patent 20140010082, filed September 2013 outlines the future of mobile technology throught the eyes of AT&T.
Their next blazing fast network will feature a system allowing the wireless carrier to charge subscribers more money for using file sharing, video, music & more intensive bandwidth services, arbitrarily.
The patent outlines how the future system operates with an additional credit system, whereby users erode their credit total by using select types of content & services. The novel idea granted a patent by the USPTO is entitled, Prevention Of Bandwidth Abuse Of A Communications System.
“The user is provided an initial number of credits. As the user consumes the credits, the data being downloaded is checked to determine if is permissible or non-permissible… prevented from consuming an excessive amount of channel bandwidth by restricting use of the channel in accordance with the type of data being downloaded to the user,” this fresh pile of patents is steaming with possibility.
Thus, if traffic cops use speed traps to issue speeding tickets & generate local government revenue in the name of safety – it stands to reason AT&T’s brightest would conjure up, and patent Bandwidth Abuse Prevention Tech! Truth be told, AT&T doesn’t know the meaning of the word abuse. Who recalls the pre-smartphone bill-pay years? After all AT&T was mistreated… waiting on hold to pay me all those months, years.
THe additional cost will apply for any/all content or service AT&T deems “non-permissible.” “Various restriction policies also can be applied, such as levying additional fees and/or terminating the user’s access to the channel” should they exceed their credit allotment or try to use content not authorized by AT&T under their current plan.
AT&T has patented a plethora of ideas & simply let the ideas sit. For years AT&T pushed and nearly launched the controversial feature sponsored data. Remember when heavy-iPhone users, new-not-dumb, discovered AT&T had been throttling data connection speeds in direct breech of advertised & contracted transfer speeds? Billing & hardware companies pined for confining, Corporatization of otherwise freewheeling web-based systems, simply hoping to cash in on consumers caught of guard or unaware.
Essentially, the play AT&T is hoping to run amounts to implementing a fee based system… a toll or tax, levied upon the once free YouTube videos, iTunes music downloads you’ve already paid for once. This move is aimed at further monetizing AT&T’s network while it continues waning in popularity among net-neutrality advocates.
Even more disturbing, AT&T is self-declaring a role to itself… both dictating “acceptable” Internet use, while imposing an entirely additional pricing layer. It comes as no surprise the former ring-masters long for the days where they called the shots of the big-show. Fortunately, technology advanced, adoption & competition went up & the big-top of big bucks & good times came to a close for AT&T, for all the telephone/telecommunications corporations.
It seems likely (if ever actually implemented) this system would be layered over the top of existing cap & overage bandwidth pricing models. Ignorance? Someone is missing something… somewhere.
Neutrality rules & protection the open-web remains less-than-boldly-backed. So, regulators are happy to approve such creative pricing initiatives. The new head of the USPTO is the former lead legal counsel for Google, Michelle Lee. So, it stands to reason she’s totally unbiased. Right? With the typical actors in place & the old guard clinging to profit & power positions… familiar mechanism come back into play (Queue the lobbyist, campaign contribution & political smarm).
There’s really nothing (other than consumer complaints and bad press, neither of which are guaranteed to keep a crazed animal, passed its’ prime… from attacking. Rest assured when it does, the social media soccer mom, the high school video blogger, the casually addicted mobile gamer or download addicted masses will cry out. Will it be loud enough or too late to scare AT&T or Verizon away from such a bad idea?