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General Yikes! Metro to enforce Unlimited Data user's Tether limits?

If you said, "Hungh, What limits?", yeah, Me too.

I have a N4 that tethers A LOT. It's a BYOD.

So this morning at about the middle of my billing cycle , I get the following text message from The Mothership.

"You have approx 10% of your Mobile Hotspot left. For More MetroPCS Mobile Hotspot data add another $5 Hotspot Top Up today! See www.metropcs/terms"

<North Ga Mountain accent> What the F, Over? <North Ga Mountain accent/>

So of course, I waded into the TOS. All 582 pages of it. <eyerool> The first tidbit is there indeed appears to be a tether limit for unlimited data users and it's a new one, just made in June. 6 G's and your tether goes to 128 Mps. I don't even think you can load a webpage with just 128 Mps.

Seems a pretty good chance I'll exceed the limit this month. I Always tether a lot more than 6G's.

Strangely enough, a pretty thorough search yields squat on whatever this "$5 Hotspot Top Up" is. Another 6G to tether for $5 wouldn't suck too bad. ;)

I can't get too terribly upset for several reasons.

I have used a horrendously incredible amount of data for $60 a month. Every month. Trust Me!(tm) I have More than gotten my money's worth. I would have paid Beelyun's from any other carrier. Yes, Tethering ISN'T *Supposed* to allow you to use your phone as your only data source. 6 G's is more LTE tether than from any other carrier.

I am somewhat curious though as for some crazy reason, the Date part of my N4 data usage meter has spazzed out. It's showing the data for the year 2072. Damn phones are amazing aren't they.

If they enforce it, I won't be thrilled but I wouldn't really have a leg to stand on to complain. (A somewhat unlikely occurrence for me. ;) )

Bruce in Ocala, Fl


#1 OcalaFlGuy, Aug 16, 2015
This should not be a surprise, it was publicly announced when the free tethering became available.
#2 Fox Mulder, Aug 16, 2015
That's the downside to prepaid...as you don't have a contract, the terms can change frequently.

Still worth it IMO. Straight Talk just shut my data off so I'm getting ready to transfer to Metro.
#3 bjacks12, Aug 16, 2015
How can they tell if you're tethering? Curious. I've been grandfathered into a seriously unlimited plan using a Nexus 5. I could go well over 15-20 GB in a month using Netflix app and tethering when I'm bored, but I've never received any kind of data usage warning even hitting that ridiculous amount of mobile data (typically I use 3-4 GB a month).

Back to my question... If I tether anything I just use the tether option that came stock with my phone, no third party app. How do they know that a particular data connection is being tethered?
#4 Spec2nirvash, Aug 16, 2015
Use built-in option. They know because a special code is written in the software telling the operator that hotspot has been engaged
#5 Skyroket, Aug 16, 2015
Customers on MetroPCS' $60/month plan, with includes unlimited talk and messaging and unlimited, unthrottled data for on-phone use, will be allowed 6 GB of full speed hotspot data. After 6 GB, hotspot will still work at the throttled speed of 128 Mbps.

On Jun 14, 2015 , this thread you were aware of it (#17)


so what changed since then......?
#6 Sept1967, Aug 16, 2015
While I recall the thread, I Didn't recall there was any tether cap on unlimited.

Regrdless, perhaps you missed the part where, while the cap was in effect, I got no warnings or anything for the months of June and July with similar usages to this month. Also the no info on the Hotspot Top Up thing is Still a valid point no one else has mentioned that I know of.

But thanks Sept1967, it's nice of you to peruse my post to be sure there was a proper reason for me posting it. <Eyeroll>

Bruce in Ocala, Fl
#7 OcalaFlGuy, Aug 16, 2015
Perhaps it would be easier to read, if the eyes didn't roll as much.......

"So of course, I waded into the TOS. All 582 pages of it. <eyerool>"

the sky is falling, the sky is falling
#8 Sept1967, Aug 17, 2015
Or you could just mirror your phone to say like a fire stick which is hooked up to your tv..i watch live tv,showbox,Netflix , literally EVERYTHING I can do on a PC and just cast to from phone to laptop or phone to fire stick or chromecast....i used 130 gigs so far this month.
#9 joshua7373, Aug 18, 2015
Oh I forgot to add I also have kodi on my phone too...
#10 joshua7373, Aug 18, 2015
Well I think its just one of those things where they're trying to reign in data hogs...tethering is supposed to be a matter of convenience but some people use their hotspot as their primary internet for laptops etc...I can see the carriers point of view if I'm being objective.
#11 starkraving, Aug 18, 2015
Kodi on my Fire Stick has been amazing and quadruples the use I get out of a small, cheap device to begin with!
#12 confed, Aug 20, 2015
I'm confused does this apply to rooted and custom ROM devices ?

Sent from my SM-G386T using Tapatalk
#13 MattK2015, Aug 26, 2015
If they can tell you're tethering, yes.
#14 kate, Sep 1, 2015
Wow boo lol
#15 MattK2015, Sep 1, 2015
First off this is not to offend anyone that has the wrong perception about unlimited data.Yes 60$ plan is truly unlimited and mobile data is unthrottled and can use the shit out of it, but almost all plans are unlimited, but carrier dictates how you use it. In the foot notes of every plan is a (*). The note on each plan is different, overall the same though. Yes, all plans that state unlimited data have "unlimited data", but they dictate how you use it. For instance 60$ plan is unlimited, uncapped 4G LTE for MOBILE data and 6GB of WiFi hotspot. Meaning you can use as much MOBILE data as you can, but the hotspot will be throttled after said GB. The 50$ plan is also unlimited "DATA", but not 4G LTE data, after 4GB you are throttled. 40$ throttles after 2GB and 30$ throttles after 1GB. Its true that they are "unlimited", but not unlimited 4G LTE except the 60$ plan, and it is UNLIMITED 4G LTE on your smartphone, not on other devices that utilize the smartphones WiFi hotspot. Therefore the carrier dictates (with every legal right, sucks, but yea.) and also explains it before selecting the plan of your choice. This info is provided educational purposes only. It is not really directed to any certain user, just used quote as a starting point. I will add pictures to show a couple examples in attachments at bottom of post.

I have listed this a few times throughout post, so be warned before you read it and complain about it being based mainly off another phone!! I have my reasons and maybe just a sentence or something will cause a chain reaction leading to a fix for the ZMAX, or even better, all metro phones. MODS/ADMIN: if this is not allowed or feel like it belongs elsewhere please move to correct category or PM me and give me the chance, possibly 12-24hrs to copy and paste to the right section.

I am also looking for an work around, but the free mobile hotspot for all is what the issue is. Hopefully someone figures it out. I actually had this phone when development just began, but lost it. I just got another one a hour ago, so all info is based on me just getting access to this phone, things I've read in this forum and other phones forums (all android forums and metro phones) and I've only had access to the LG Optimus F6 for last few months this time and have actually owned 3 of them over last couple yrs. because of its tethering capabilities. I used to be able to tether the F6 on anything, anywhere with no limits, absolutely perfect until metro gave free hotspot to all. I know this is the ZMAX forum, but this post is valid and for information that could pertain future ZMAX tethering dev work. Info below is like said from the F6 from my own experience and also seen several other MetroPCS phones with same issues after the new 6GB hotspot for all.

Before everyone got the 6GB of hotspot I could WiFi tether to:
Other smart phones and tablets as much as I wanted with no loss of speed.
Wii (modded)
Laptop and desktop with UA string
2 Smart TVs 1-LG 1-Sony.
Before the hotspot for all on each of these Smart TVs I could use the makers app store, YouTube, browser, and Netflix with no issues/throttle as much as I wanted.
After the hotspot for all was implemented I can now only do all the above for first 6GB or so (sometimes a little more, but not a lot.), then the Sony will connect to internet, but load extremely slow, well it trys, but is to slow to work. That is on anything internet related. On the LG it also connects to the internet, but different results. Examples below:
Netflix has some issues loading thumbnails/info, but will play movies and shows all month long at full speed.
LG app store to slow to load.
YouTube times out.
Browser - Google searches load fast, but webpages are absolutely slow, but will eventually load. Video streams will not load or will timeout or buffer constantly.
XBOX360 will connect to Xbox live and internet. You can view gamertag info ect fine, but apps like netflix or online play or updates will timeout and will not work.
Wii - Ain't tried it.
Other smart phones and tablets will run most apps and surf internet at under the speed from before, but by far good enough to bare with. On the other hand streaming, downloading from play store or unknown sources and streaming are way slow. Basically unbearable to stream and download speeds are probably a bit slower than dial up. The play store is actually slower than the unknown sources downloads. Play store is pretty much unbearable at those speeds.
Desktops and laptops - not tested enough for accurate info, but a lot slower is the best I can say about them.
I am going to say this AGAIN!! This info is from the F6, but I feel it is valid with most Metropcs phones and is for educational/possible solution help for ZMAX

Tested device info:
Device: LG Optimus F6
Root Access: Yes
Operating system/s: JB 4.1.2 rooted Stock, JB 4.1.2 GTs Xperion ROM, hroarks CM 11, KitKat 4.4.2 KitKat Mini, DMs Carbon ROM, (?)s PacRom 4.4.4, so yea basically Stock, CM, AOKP, and AOSP and all above results and tests are the same.
Apps: Fattin Hotspot toggle, WiFi Tether 3.3 beta 2 with android tuner and configured, Purchased WiFi Tether Router Fabio Grassan or whatever the name is ,and FoxFi. Havnt tried pdanet, but since FoxFi didn't, then figured it wouldn't either.
I will add info when I can and will help all I can to my ability. I am sorry if you wasted part of your life reading this or went blind or found it completely irrelevant, just trying to get out what my own experience is/was and go from there.
#16 Flablitz, Oct 23, 2015 Last edited: Oct 23, 2015
@Flablitz , I've moved your post from the ZTE Zmax forum into this thread as it appeared to me to relate. ;)
If I'm off the mark, just rattle my cage :)
#17 Mikestony, Nov 9, 2015
That's fine. I was just putting the little bit of what stuff I've encountered in a post that will hopefully hope that helps others understand. Thanks for the heads up.
#18 Flablitz, Nov 10, 2015
FYI tethering upping to 8gb Nov19.
#19 horsecharles, Nov 16, 2015
Although it is implied, I wanted to add on to @horsecharles that the extra gig is for the unlimited plan.
#20 confed, Nov 17, 2015
Update: MetroPCS Now Including Free Hotspot With All Plans Update:


;););) :batdroid:
#21 GypsyBLove, Jul 20, 2016
what a dumb bot

you say this post from
Posted by Dennis Bournique at 9:54 AM on Thursday, June 11, 2015 // 73 comments

Needed to be posted, yesterday...........2016.....you missed it by a whole year..........

#22 Sept1967, Jul 21, 2016
I'm kinda dumb too... I thought was an actual poster.
I did wait a minute, rescinded the Like, was then gonna comment how old news, but it's a noob why embarrass + might feel hurt with the removed Like...
#23 horsecharles, Jul 22, 2016
I have the new zmax pro and delighted to report way over allowance n speeds only somewhat throttled.
Dang, Zte should pay me.
#24 horsecharles, Aug 9, 2016
#25 Otisthick, Oct 1, 2016