A few weeks ago, we heard several reports of Windows Phone 7 users claiming that their handsets were mysteriously sending out huge chunks of data on a daily basis, but now it appears that the root of the problem has finally been identified. Unfortunately, Microsoft won't say what it is. Speaking with Nick Eaton of Seattle PI, Microsoft said that "a third-party solution commonly accessed from Windows Phones" is the cause of the data usage and that they're working with the company to get a fix ready. The full statement from MSFT is as follows:
"We have determined that a third-party solution commonly accessed from Windows Phones is configured in a manner that potentially cause larger than expected data downloads. We are in contact with the third party to assist them in making the necessary fixes, and are also pursuing potential workarounds to address the configuration issue in case those are needed. At this point in our investigation, we believe this is responsible for most of the reported incidents.
We are investigating additional potential root causes for the remainder of the reports. A small (low single-digit) percentage of Windows Phone customers have reported being affected.
We are continuing to investigate this issue and will update with additional information and guidance as it becomes available."
Considering how big a deal this issue was and continues to be, it's kind of strange that Microsoft didn't bother to alert anyone to the fact that they'd finally learned what was causing the strange data transmissions or what piece of software is to blame. There's a lot of speculation that the Facebook app is to blame, but no one is sure just yet since Microsoft is being so tight-lipped. For Microsoft's sake, and the sake of those WP7 users that aren't on unlimited data plans, here's to hoping that a solution gets pushed out pretty soon.