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Verizon Denies Throttling Florence Victims, But Customers Deal with Slow Speeds

Phillip Dampier September 19, 2018 Broadband Speed, Consumer News, Data Caps, Verizon, Wireless Broadband 3 Comments

Verizon Wireless claims it is not intentionally slowing data services for its customers in North & South Carolina, despite growing complaints from customers about slow speeds.

Stop the Cap! has heard from nearly 20 readers in central and eastern North Carolina and they are displeased with Verizon’s performance.

“Signal is five bars but speed might as well be dial-up,” reports one reader. “I have consistently gotten 20 Mbps or better service for at least a decade from my home and workplace on Verizon’s network, but now the speed shows it starts at around 20 Mbps but quickly declines to less than 1 Mbps within 3-5 seconds. I have an unlimited data plan and have relied on it since Spectrum went out over the weekend.”

“Of course they are throttling us,” said Paul Ingell, who moved inland from New Bern to share a room with friends near Charlotte. “As soon as you go over 20 GB, the speed throttle game begins, and they are playing it. My bill reset date was today and by gosh speeds magically returned to normal. But my sister-in-law is still being throttled. Her phone delivers less than 1 Mbps sitting right next to mine and I get around 15 Mbps. We both own the same phones and have unlimited plans.”

The Washington Post covered the alleged Verizon slowdowns as well, and one Raleigh area reader claimed he is being throttled now as well.

“We lost power/cable and were using my Verizon unlimited data plan for internet access, and were very frustrated when attempting to access pages with dynamic content,” he wrote. “This is not typically a problem in central North Carolina, a high-coverage area. It seemed clear our data was being throttled.”

Another reader in New Bern who rode out the storm said Verizon service was very poor as he attempted to get news from CNN and Google during and after the storm. Browsing was almost impossible.

“E-mails and texts were the only reasonably quick way for me to get information. Other people complained of the same issue,” the reader wrote. “Having lost power and internet, the phone was our only contact with the outside.”

First word of the claimed throttling came from a reddit thread from AbeFroman21:

My family lives in a small town in eastern North Carolina, and we were just devastated by the hurricane. Our power has been out for five days now and internet service is gone as well. Two days ago my wife and I noticed that we couldn’t retrieve our email from our phone or check Facebook [for] updates from our community about the storm or when service would be restored.

We traveled into a bigger town and called Verizon to check and see if there was a data outage and when we could expect it to be restored. Only, I was told that my unlimited plan was deprioritized for being too low tier of a plan. But if I upgraded to a higher plan my service would be restored.

There’s no outage, just corporations sucking dry a community that as already lost so much. Thanks a**holes.

Verizon categorically denies it is throttling any customers in North Carolina.

“On North Carolina, we are not throttling,” said Richard Young, a Verizon spokesman. “The most likely scenario is that the customer, who can’t connect to the internet, is in an area that has lost cell service.”

Currently there are 3 comments on this Article:

  1. Dan says:

    Nice job Verizon first throttle first responders then hurricane victims.
    Fcc step in oh wait. Ajuit pia is worse than useless he is anti consumer.

  2. Dylan says:

    Just isn’t that nice? I would drop them quickly if they told me that my plan was too “low” and I needed to upgrade and pay more for better service. What a joke. Especially during the disaster that this area is facing.

  3. Coin says:

    While its possible the connections are being throttled, I think its more likely that the cell network is overwhelmed. I live in a hurricane prone area, Houston. Every-time the comcasticly reliable internet goes down the cell network bogs to a crawl as everyone uses their cell phone to access the internet. Unfortunately the cell phone network lacks the capacity to handle lots of users.

    Also something else to keep in mind, cell networks often use the cable providers backhaul network for cell tower use. Here, T-Mobile and Verizon use comcast’s network for cell tower sevice. Comcast goes down, and the cell phones go down.

    This is just the nature of natural disasters. The cell network can’t handle the load and gets damaged too. Heck even during evacuations the network becomes overwhelmed. This isn’t throttling, its a use case the network can’t handle.

    Its why I have a SAT phone for emergencies.







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