AT&T to require new Mobile Share data plans for FaceTime calls over cellular



  • Reply 101 of 105
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member


    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

    That is axiomatically incorrect. Check out Vaelian's post above.

    I did read his post but what I said is not incorrect in that if there is no QoS the pipe is wide open. QoS either downgrades the bandwidth or it doesn't, there is no increasing the bandwidth. Prioritizing, true, but lack of QoS means there is no throttling at all.

  • Reply 102 of 105
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    mstone wrote: »
    After reading Vaelian remarks, perhaps my view of QoS is on the negative side which is the way it is used on our own network. In the case of AT&T imagine that regular voice calls have no QoS other than audio compression so they can be sent as close to real time as possible. Since FT would also require real time speed to be usable, I can see how it would need a similar priority however, it does seem like a luxury version of personal communication so it probably should only be available when/if network conditions permit. Using your air passenger analogy, when flying a twin prop commuter flight there is no first class seating.

    Audio compression is a part of trying to get audio as real time as possible but I guarantee you that AT&T (and all MNOs) use QoS for their voice traffic.

    Their voice traffic, not all audio. If you make a call you will get the best possible transmission they can offer. You should never on a call talking whilst using Safari and have the audio drop out for a second when you refresh a page.

    I hope that AT&T is going to give it priority over other traffic. It does use all the standard protocols for video conferencing and it's hard to imagine Apple wouldn't want to pimp their VC service over others with an indication of a real benefit over their competitors. Allowing carriers to add an additional charge without a benefit to the vendor is the opposite of what Apple has done with the industry thus far.

    If there is a cost for metered data users I'd think it would be just a flat fee and if that is the case then they will offer QoS priority for FT because otherwise there is no real benefit for the additional charge. However, I'm thinking right now that it's mostly likely to only be a charge for those with unlimited data to prevent abuse. I say that because it's what I'd do to help prevent those with unlimited data from abusing this priority service. I'd also use it as a way to help pluck the abusers off the network that JB their phone and skirt their contract by enabling it.

    As for cost, there definitely is a cost, just like with SMS, but I don't it's much. They do offer QoS for their phone service (for which they charge an arm and leg for) but it's only voice. When you add video you add a lot more data that has to be sent in real time. The only benefit to video over voice is that you can get away with a few bad frames of video but you garble a second of voice and you can really miss something important and become frustrated with the service quickly.

    Now lets take into a account the way we use these devices as opposed to pre-iPhone. AT&T might have to deal with less priority traffic now than it did in 2007 simply because sending a best-effort packet as an iMessage, email, whatever, is more common than calling someone up. I know I certainly try to not use my phone... but that's not exactly proof of anything.

    I know you have cisco routers at your work. Aren't you using IP phones, too? It's hard for me to imagine you are not. That is a positive use of QoS.

    Understanding QoS

    Typically, networks operate on a best-effort delivery basis, which means that all traffic has equal priority and an equal chance of being delivered in a timely manner. When congestion occurs, all traffic has an equal chance of being dropped.

    When you configure QoS, you can select specific network traffic, prioritize it according to its relative importance, and use congestion-management and congestion-avoidance techniques to give preferential treatment. Implementing QoS in your network makes network performance more predictable and bandwidth utilization more effective.

    PS: If I were Apple negotiating this deal I would also try to swing Siri as part of QoS to help make that service as fast real time as possible. It's not telephony but I can see how every millisecond counts here because you want this to be as fast as possible. I think the packets are already pretty small as the local device cuts down on a lot of the voice data that is unessential to the Dragon Dictation-backend and, of course, the data packet you receive will be efficient, but I would certainly pay several dollars a month for FT priority (which I'll never use) if it also came with Siri priority service. That said, I'd rather have Apple's complex association with the carriers allow for Siri QoS as part of buying an iPhone, but that's probably too much to ask for.
  • Reply 103 of 105
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    mstone wrote: »
    I did read his post but what I said is not incorrect in that if there is no QoS the pipe is wide open. QoS either downgrades the bandwidth or it doesn't, there is no increasing the bandwidth. Prioritizing, true, but lack of QoS means there is no throttling at all.

    I'm not sure why you are brining bandwidth into this. It's all relative to a discussion of QoS. It does affect actual throughput as there is additional processing, but that's par for the course, just like a router incurring more overhead than a switch and ACLs over no ACLs.
  • Reply 104 of 105
    sdbryansdbryan Posts: 349member
    Of course they have removed a feature. The customer is already paying to have his data moved across the network. AT&T is deciding there are some bits they won't move for a paying customer. It is none of their business how the customer uses those bits. This is what network neutrality is about. The actions of AT&T are outrageous.
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