Developer Claims Three Major Carriers Throttle iPhone and iPad Data Speeds

speedtestAccording to Joseph Brown, one of the developers behind the iTweakiOS site that provides hacked carrier updates for iOS users, Apple is purposely throttling iPhone data speeds to "even out" the network as Apple's phones consume more data than other smartphones.

Brown states that AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint limit the iPhone's data speeds and provides evidence in the form of snapshots of network settings. For example, AT&T limits the iPhone 5 to Category 10 (14.4Mbps) HSDPA despite the fact that the network is able to support up to Category 14 (21.1Mbps) HSDPA+ and the iPhone supports Category 24 (42.2Mbps) DC-HSDPA+.

Brown goes on to point out similar throttling code present in the LTE and 3G network settings of both Verizon and Sprint, for the iPhone and the iPad. His theory is that Apple (or the carriers themselves) are throttling data speeds in order to cut down on the iPhone's data usage.

- AT&T limits HSPA+ and permanently throttles LTE (unless hack is applied)
- Verizon permanently throttles LTE (unless hack is applied)
- Verizon and Sprint throttle down 3G (unless hack is applied)
- Apple has band preferences set for T-Mobile and AT&T causing signal issues (very much fixable by Apple and the carrier and is currently being looked into, from I've been told)

T-Mobile, the last network to receive the iPhone, is the only carrier that does not appear to throttle iPhone data usage. Though Brown places the blame for the network settings on Apple, it is unclear whether it is Apple or the carriers themselves at fault, and the reasoning behind the alleged throttling is equally unclear. Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon have all historically throttled the data speeds of high volume users.

To thwart the apparent throttling, iTweakiOS offers a number of carrier hacks that are designed to increase data speeds.

Update: AnandTech has debunked this claim and says that neither Apple nor the carriers are throttling data speeds.

Popular Stories

iPhone SE 4 Vertical Camera Feature

iPhone SE 4 Rumored to Use Same Rear Chassis as iPhone 16

Friday July 19, 2024 7:16 am PDT by
Apple will adopt the same rear chassis manufacturing process for the iPhone SE 4 that it is using for the upcoming standard iPhone 16, claims a new rumor coming out of China. According to the Weibo-based leaker "Fixed Focus Digital," the backplate manufacturing process for the iPhone SE 4 is "exactly the same" as the standard model in Apple's upcoming iPhone 16 lineup, which is expected to...
iPhone 16 Pro Sizes Feature

iPhone 16 Series Is Just Two Months Away: Everything We Know

Monday July 15, 2024 4:44 am PDT by
Apple typically releases its new iPhone series around mid-September, which means we are about two months out from the launch of the iPhone 16. Like the iPhone 15 series, this year's lineup is expected to stick with four models – iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max – although there are plenty of design differences and new features to take into account. To bring ...
bsod

Crowdstrike Says Global IT Outage Impacting Windows PCs, But Mac and Linux Hosts Not Affected

Friday July 19, 2024 3:12 am PDT by
A widespread system failure is currently affecting numerous Windows devices globally, causing critical boot failures across various industries, including banks, rail networks, airlines, retailers, broadcasters, healthcare, and many more sectors. The issue, manifesting as a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD), is preventing computers from starting up properly and forcing them into continuous recovery...
iphone 14 lineup

Cellebrite Unable to Unlock iPhones on iOS 17.4 or Later, Leak Reveals

Thursday July 18, 2024 4:18 am PDT by
Israel-based mobile forensics company Cellebrite is unable to unlock iPhones running iOS 17.4 or later, according to leaked documents verified by 404 Media. The documents provide a rare glimpse into the capabilities of the company's mobile forensics tools and highlight the ongoing security improvements in Apple's latest devices. The leaked "Cellebrite iOS Support Matrix" obtained by 404 Media...
Apple Watch Series 9

2024 Apple Watch Lineup: Key Changes We're Expecting

Tuesday July 16, 2024 7:59 am PDT by
Apple is seemingly planning a rework of the Apple Watch lineup for 2024, according to a range of reports from over the past year. Here's everything we know so far. Apple is expected to continue to offer three different Apple Watch models in five casing sizes, but the various display sizes will allegedly grow by up to 12% and the casings will get taller. Based on all of the latest rumors,...
tinypod apple watch

TinyPod Turns Your Apple Watch Into an iPod

Wednesday July 17, 2024 3:18 pm PDT by
If you have an old Apple Watch and you're not sure what to do with it, a new product called TinyPod might be the answer. Priced at $79, the TinyPod is a silicone case with a built-in scroll wheel that houses the Apple Watch chassis. When an Apple Watch is placed inside the TinyPod, the click wheel on the case is able to be used to scroll through the Apple Watch interface. The feature works...

Top Rated Comments

k1121j Avatar
145 months ago
Lol

They do?

Image (http://i.imgur.com/HFxQqZN.png?1)

Looks like you are testing your WIFI to me
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jpmcnown Avatar
145 months ago
This is really a good idea because the iPhone does use more and that's not fair to us Android or Windows users.

T-Mobile will catch on soon, once more people hop on their network.

That was a really pathetic effort to light a fanboy fire.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lcmazza Avatar
145 months ago
Why throttle if there's a quota limit anyway?

Seems dumb.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
charlieegan3 Avatar
145 months ago
"...it is unclear whether it is Apple or the carriers themselves at fault"

Not both?
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
e-coli Avatar
145 months ago
And here come the lawsuits.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
86939 Avatar
145 months ago
Looks like you are testing your WIFI to me
I'm on wifi right now, this why you see it in the screenshot. Those results were from three days ago via cell connection in Myrtle Beach, SC.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)