Prepaid carrier Boost Mobile, owned by Sprint, will soon begin enforcing data throttling for customers that exceed 2.5 gigabytes of usage each month. Despite advertising their monthly, pay-as-you-go rates as "unlimited," Boost will slash speeds down to just 256kbps for those who can't stay under the predetermined data ceiling. The company doesn't plan to cut users off entirely, but activities like streaming music and video will become nearly impossible once you've been handcuffed by the slower speeds. These changes will set in "on or around" January 20th, according to a post on Boost's Facebook page. In announcing throttling, the company is echoing talking lines we've heard from carriers that have followed a similar path: a vast majority of users will never hit that 2.5GB threshold, Boost insists, and the slower speeds will only affect a small percentage of customers.
The 2.5GB limitation is identical to the one Virgin Mobile placed on its customers early this year; considering both MVNOs piggyback on Sprint's network, it's unsurprising to see the same hard cap applied to both services. Still, even though keeping an "unlimited" data plan on these prepaid carriers is no longer a viable option, there's always Sprint and T-Mobile for those willing to sign a contract.