New Report Says Apple Purposely Throttling Data Speeds for Carriers


I’ve been using my iPhone 5 as my all-around gateway to the internet. Aside from having an always-on internet plan, I’ve also ditched my mobile WiFi device and have been using the iPhone 5’s personal hotspot feature to allow my laptop to access the internet. But even with the relatively fast LTE speeds I’ve been getting, do notice that the speed is not as fast I would’ve expected from a 4G connection.

A new report published by Joseph Brown may prove to be the answer to this question. According to Brown, who is the developer of the hacked carrier updates for AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile that has dramatically increased data speeds, Apple is deliberately throttling data speeds for the iPhone and iPad in behalf of mobile carriers.

Brown alleges that Apple and the mobile carriers have implemented coding to deliberately limit data speeds for both the iPhone and the iPad. He said that the reasons for doing this is unclear and only Apple and the mobile carriers can answer this. But based on previous statements made by AT&T and tech groups, the iPhone are “very complex devices with a very complex OS.” Apparently, the OS still guzzles up a lot of data even when it is on idle mode – more so than other phones in the market today. Acting on carrier requests, Apple limits the capabilities of the device to help “even out” the network, even though as a result of this move, Galaxy phones now outperform Apple’s devices by a significant margin.

Brown further revealed that the iPhone 5 has been limited to Category 10 HSDPA (14.4 Mbps), even though the device can support Category 24 DC-HSDPA+ (42.2 Mbps), and AT&T network support for Category 14 HSDPA+ (21.1 Mbps).

Brown released a screenshot of AT&T’s network settings and here’s what it indicates:


Other findings released by Brown include the following:

  • AT&T limits HSPA+ and also permanently throttles the speed of LTE.
  • Verizon has permanently throttled LTE
  • Verizon and Sprint throttle 3G
  • Apple has instituted band preference for both T-Mobile and AT&T that has resulted in signal issues

Brown’s hacked carrier updates claim to remove these limitations and actually increase data speeds. Some people who have installed the update reported improvements in data speeds.

Do you think Apple and mobile carriers are purposely throttling data speeds?



Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo is a stalwart in the tech journalism community, has been chronicling the ever-evolving world of Apple products and innovations for over a decade. As a Senior Author at Apple Gazette, Kokou combines a deep passion for technology with an innate ability to translate complex tech jargon into relatable insights for everyday users.

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