- With Net Neutrality about to end, some customers found Verizon data caps on their internet bills this week.
- Verizon claims that the data usage limits are not caps, and will not be enforced.
- Verizon credits the confusion to a “system error” and says it has no plans to cap internet data.
A small collection of Verizon DSL subscribers in New York and New Jersey were surprised to find data caps on their Verizon dashboards yesterday. According to Verizon, it is “conducting a usage billing trial” and the listed limits are not caps.
Net Neutrality – the idea that the internet should remain free, open, and treated as a public utility – is going to cease to be the law of the land in a few weeks. One of the major fears of the death of Net Neutrality is ISP’s like Verizon imposing usage caps on customers.
The screenshot below, provided to a pro-Net Neutrality group called Stop the Cap, shows the test usage caps for two DSL plans Verizon offers.
The two limits present are 150GB/month for the basic “high-speed” DSL plan and 250GB/month for the “enhanced” DSL plan.
According to the customers who saw the data cap information in their accounts, Verizon gave no warning that a change was coming.
Stop the Cap reached out to Verizon for comment, and the company gave some statements in response.
According to Verizon, the customers in New York and New Jersey experienced a “system error,” as the company is not testing usage caps in those areas. The “usage billing trial” is supposed only to be happening in Virginia.
Verizon assures Stop the Cap that the test is only to “measure [customers’] data use and display it in their billing.” The company emphasized that although “these customers were given the 250 GB and 150 GB allowances you showed in those screenshots, we’ve never billed customers who exceed those allowances and have no plans to do so. The purpose of the trial was more the idea of accurately collecting and displaying usage in billing.”
While Verizon replying to Stop the Cap is commendable, it does seem pretty strange that it is claiming it has no interest in imposing data caps while simultaneously showing customers that their data is at the very least “soft” capped.
With the loss of Net Neutrality on June 7, expect to see a lot more “tests” like this one from the ISP’s across the nation.