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Data throttling has become increasingly common among U.S. carriers in recent years as unlimited data plans disappear and adoption of smartphones and tablets grows. Recently we learned that Sprint MVNOs Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile will soon begin throttling heavy data users even more than they have in the past, and today it’s been revealed that their parent company has some throttling plans of its own.

According to FierceWireless, Sprint has begun sending text messages to prepaid and postpaid users to alert them to Sprint’s new “prioritization management” plan that will go live as soon as next month. One text explained that this data prioritization will be used on customers that are within the top 5 percent of heavy data users.

Sprint confirmed the news in an official statement, explaining that the prioritization management will allow it to “provide more customers with a high quality data experience during heavy usage times.” The big yellow carrier added that once a throttled consumer is no longer connected to a congested tower or that cell site becomes uncongested, data speeds will go back to normal.

Sprint hasn’t set an exact data threshold at which customers will begin to see their data speeds slowed. However, the operator did say that users that regularly consume 5GB or more in one month are likely to be among the top 5 heaviest users.

As I mentioned before, consumers are increasingly buying smartphones and tablets and using them to gobble up more and more data. That’s why it’s no surprise to learn that Sprint is planning to implement this new data prioritization management plan in order to help relieve some of the stress that its towers undergo from time to time. While this news may come as a bit of a bummer for Sprint folk, at least those folks that do get throttled will have their speeds return to normal once the congestion dies down or they switch cell sites.

Have you ever had your data speeds throttled?

Via FierceWireless

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