Are Mobile web users at the end of tether?

Some of you may be asking what this is all about. Well for a while the new generation of mobiles and smartphones have the ability to act as mini Wi-Fi routers – this is called tethering. This means that you can link laptops, phones and tablets to them and gain access to the internet for these devices.

Tablet

Alongside this mobile operators are reducing the number of unlimited data bundles available. This is because with the increasing use of smartphones, data usage has sky rocketed. So increasingly the data packages are capped at 500MB or 1GB. What some operators have decided to do at the same time is charge extra for the privilege of tethering. So if you have a 500MB data bundle on your smartphone and you decide to enable tethering on the phone. Your operator may charge you extra outside you data bundle for the privilege of tethering.

The reality is that we are all using mobiles to access the internet more and more, and web browsing is more data-intensive on larger devices – tablets can use twice as much data as a mobile phone.

So why are they doing this? Well their business model is based on mobile broadband access being conducted via dongles or mini Wi-Fi hubs (Mifis). If we use tethering it will make these redundant and result in loss of income stream. So they charge us for tethering.

Some operators such as O2 and 3 have offered tethering without extra charge since earlier this year and Vodafone has just begun including it on new and updated contracts. Orange only lets iPhone customers do it and both Orange and T-Mobile charge more for packages that allows a personal hotspot to be switched on.

So if you are thinking of tethering – forewarned is forearmed if you wish to kerb your mobile costs make sure you know what operators policy is on tethering.

 

http://bbc.in/nVfewZ

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