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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  
    charkswitlazers's Avatar

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    Default Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    We all know Virgin hates tethering....however, how easily is it to truly get caught? And how exactly do they find out?

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    althought technically they have the technical ability to look at your traffic, its not feasible to do that for every user.

    most likely they look out for data use thats uncommon to a phone.

    a mobile browser might request new data at different intervals than a PC browser or background apps would, thus a different usage pattern they can track without actively looking at your data.

    or they could have internal limits on use, like a certain about of data per hour, or day. no one knows what they use to check except Virgin themselves.

    for now, the thing to do is AVOID tethering, becuase your only furthering their desire to stop it.

    the more people who keep doing it, the more likely we are to get capped or slowed, (even though its supposed to happen soon)

    however, if you only need to use it occasionally for browsing, it should be ok.

    I remember one guy going on the forums bragging he did 20 gb in a month.

    I did 12 one month myself but havent tethered since. havent needed to.
    luckyleslie likes this.
  3. #3  
    LeslieAnn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Quote Originally Posted by watskyhotsky View Post
    althought technically they have the technical ability to look at your traffic, its not feasible to do that for every user.
    Actually, they can, very easy.

    However, even if they know, is it worth the repercussions?
    They know many of us do it, and they also know many are on Virgin for that reason alone. So long as you aren't using a bunch of gigs every month it's not worth it for them to make a stink over it. They are still making money on you and people you refer to them, making a stink just creates bad publicity and people they are profiting off will leave.


    More detail...
    It's not difficult to have a program scanning in and outbound traffic for things an Android would not be sending, such as a header or handshake saying Internet Explorer or Firefox. It's pretty obvious you are tethering when they see this. If you doubt this is transmitted, keep reading.

    Take a look at what Sitemeter provides, and keep in mind this is mostly handled by making an image request (that you may or may not see) and that these are BASIC statistics they offer (not one of my sites, but I do use Sitemeter on them). Take a look at the side menu and the bottom menu to see what all details they track.

    If you think that is bad, you should see what Google Analytics, Adsense and Facebook can track. They can identify your agegroup and income level. You may have heard the name Doubleclick? Google bought them after the D.O.J. shut down their plans to link your browser with your credit report when they bought a credit reporting company. This was all handled through targeted advertising. Yes, they actually felt they could identify you that accurately and so did the D.O.J.

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  4. #4  
    dwappo's Avatar

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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Quote Originally Posted by LeslieAnn View Post
    Actually, they can, very easy.

    However, even if they know, is it worth the repercussions?
    They know many of us do it, and they also know many are on Virgin for that reason alone. So long as you aren't using a bunch of gigs every month it's not worth it for them to make a stink over it. They are still making money on you and people you refer to them, making a stink just creates bad publicity and people they are profiting off will leave.


    More detail...
    It's not difficult to have a program scanning in and outbound traffic for things an Android would not be sending, such as a header or handshake saying Internet Explorer or Firefox. It's pretty obvious you are tethering when they see this. If you doubt this is transmitted, keep reading.

    Take a look at what Sitemeter provides, and keep in mind this is mostly handled by making an image request (that you may or may not see) and that these are BASIC statistics they offer (not one of my sites, but I do use Sitemeter on them). Take a look at the side menu and the bottom menu to see what all details they track.

    If you think that is bad, you should see what Google Analytics, Adsense and Facebook can track. They can identify your agegroup and income level. You may have heard the name Doubleclick? Google bought them after the D.O.J. shut down their plans to link your browser with your credit report when they bought a credit reporting company. This was all handled through targeted advertising. Yes, they actually felt they could identify you that accurately and so did the D.O.J.
    This is scary. But I wouldn't think tethering just to look at webpages is "that" bad, because most people look at the "desktop" version of sites anyways? Also, are they planing to just throttle speeds over 2-5 gigs, or are they putting a cap on it like at&t and Version?
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  
    charkswitlazers's Avatar

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by watskyhotsky View Post
    althought technically they have the technical ability to look at your traffic, its not feasible to do that for every user.

    most likely they look out for data use thats uncommon to a phone.

    a mobile browser might request new data at different intervals than a PC browser or background apps would, thus a different usage pattern they can track without actively looking at your data.

    or they could have internal limits on use, like a certain about of data per hour, or day. no one knows what they use to check except Virgin themselves.

    for now, the thing to do is AVOID tethering, becuase your only furthering their desire to stop it.

    the more people who keep doing it, the more likely we are to get capped or slowed, (even though its supposed to happen soon)

    however, if you only need to use it occasionally for browsing, it should be ok.

    I remember one guy going on the forums bragging he did 20 gb in a month.

    I did 12 one month myself but havent tethered since. havent needed to.
    You tethered 12GB in one month and didn't get caught? Is there any proof of anyone actually being caught tethering?

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
  6. #6  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Quote Originally Posted by charkswitlazers View Post
    You tethered 12GB in one month and didn't get caught? Is there any proof of anyone actually being caught tethering?

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
    define "getting caught"

    I mean... what would they do?

    at the very least I assume they could send out an email warning me, or a text message. but i never got any of that.

    why do you use the term "getting caught" its like your afraid police are going to blow down your door and haul you away.

    its not THAT bad, its just preferable not to do it, or at least not use it as main internet.

    besides this stuff is the reason there going to throttle it for heavy users in a few months anyways.
  7. #7  
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Or raise prices again...
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  8. #8  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    $25 plan and looooving it!
  9. Thread Author  Thread Author    #9  
    charkswitlazers's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by watskyhotsky View Post
    define "getting caught"

    I mean... what would they do?

    at the very least I assume they could send out an email warning me, or a text message. but i never got any of that.

    why do you use the term "getting caught" its like your afraid police are going to blow down your door and haul you away.

    its not THAT bad, its just preferable not to do it, or at least not use it as main internet.

    besides this stuff is the reason there going to throttle it for heavy users in a few months anyways.
    I've heard they've terminated peoples plans when they were caught tethering. I was just curious..
    I think they should add a hotspot plan like sprint has. Although sprint has a data cap on their hotspot... If virgin had an unlimited hotspot add-on, even more people would switch to their network. I'm on the $25 plan and would happily pay another $25 for unlimited tethering.
    But that's just me.

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
  10. #10  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Quote Originally Posted by charkswitlazers View Post
    I've heard they've terminated peoples plans when they were caught tethering. I was just curious..
    I think they should add a hotspot plan like sprint has. Although sprint has a data cap on their hotspot... If virgin had an unlimited hotspot add-on, even more people would switch to their network. I'm on the $25 plan and would happily pay another $25 for unlimited tethering.
    But that's just me.

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
    sounds good in theory but its just so hard to control that in software.

    especially when they tried blocking tethering and the community just created a rom that enabled it again.

    they do sell a dedicated 3G internet hotspot device with its own plan. but the odds of them rolling it up into the phones is slim, considering the various ways it would just go all wrong.
  11. #11  
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Takenover83 View Post
    Or raise prices again...
    Exactly, thank you! That's the real concern. Let's just hope that we can stay grandfathered for some time.

    Sent from my LG Optimus V CM7/IHO
  12. #12  
    LeslieAnn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    I don't expect any price increase considering the new competition they are facing from other carriers now. It would be suicide.

    Even when they raised it to $35 there was little competition, now, every carrier has a prepaid plan breathing down their neck.

    Harmonia Developer for Optimus V, Optimus Elite, One V, Evo V, Evo Shift, Evo V
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  13. #13  
    Dannemand's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeslieAnn View Post
    I don't expect any price increase considering the new competition they are facing from other carriers now. It would be suicide.

    Even when they raised it to $35 there was little competition, now, every carrier has a prepaid plan breathing down their neck.
    Understood, makes sense. I guess my concern would be that over time, as some vm customers drift to competing carriers, if a large percentage of the old base of grandfathered customers end up being hard core tetherers, that vm will finally say enough with these $25 cheapskates, and end the grandfathering. They ARE running a business after all, and will only continue grandfathering as long as it makes business sense.

    Sent from my LG Optimus V CM7/IHO
  14. #14  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Catching someone tethering would be very easy. As most users on the forums are tech savvy enough to know, every time a browser requests a page, it sends out system info like what browser client and OS the user is on.
  15. #15  
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    I know there are lots of opinions on this, but in the end we pay for unlimited data* (cant forget the *) - as far as I am concerned it is none of their business what I do with that data. I have "stealth" tethered on Verizon, T-Mobile, and now Virgin without issue. Bits are bits - and I will keep using mine as I please.

    Do I stream hours and hours of Netflix - nope. Do I play high bandwith online games like WoW - Nope. But I absolutely will keep using it for email, surfing, even light torrent downloads when I have no other option for connectivity.

    My older brother - who seems forever in financial ruin - had his VZW phone shut off due to non-pay and I even used it yesterday to let him makes calls via a VOIP service.

    It is Virgin's network and to some extent they can manage it however they want, but it is my hardware and my data that I have paid for - so I am gonna tether whenever I feel the need until made to stop - and even then I will find a way around it most likely.

    I also think it is a little naive to think that if we just don't do it that much they will never have a problem with it. Make no mistake - If VM could force every one of us to pay more for this without losing us - they would. Just look at ATT and how they just add tethering to a contract when they sense it.

    The key to this is just like everything else in the world - move with traffic, blend with the crowd, and do not be the guy that uses 10X the bandwith that everyone else does and you can have a little security in your obscurity. Mix that with the fact that there is only a tiny fraction of VM's customers that are even nerdy enought to try this and it becomes quickly not worth the money for these guys to fight this.

    The last BIG benefit you have here is that VM does not have you by the B@LL$ in a contract and if they are too big of jerks about this - you (and I for that matter) can just leave. If they ever do lock this down - I will.

    The worst case scenario on this is you get a strongly worded email that states that you need stop doing this. And when that email arrives - I will move on - maybe to the new T-mobile month to month plans.
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  16. Thread Author  Thread Author    #16  
    charkswitlazers's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by mknollman123 View Post
    I know there are lots of opinions on this, but in the end we pay for unlimited data* (cant forget the *) - as far as I am concerned it is none of their business what I do with that data. I have "stealth" tethered on Verizon, T-Mobile, and now Virgin without issue. Bits are bits - and I will keep using mine as I please.

    Do I stream hours and hours of Netflix - nope. Do I play high bandwith online games like WoW - Nope. But I absolutely will keep using it for email, surfing, even light torrent downloads when I have no other option for connectivity.

    My older brother - who seems forever in financial ruin - had his VZW phone shut off due to non-pay and I even used it yesterday to let him makes calls via a VOIP service.

    It is Virgin's network and to some extent they can manage it however they want, but it is my hardware and my data that I have paid for - so I am gonna tether whenever I feel the need until made to stop - and even then I will find a way around it most likely.

    I also think it is a little naive to think that if we just don't do it that much they will never have a problem with it. Make no mistake - If VM could force every one of us to pay more for this without losing us - they would. Just look at ATT and how they just add tethering to a contract when they sense it.

    The key to this is just like everything else in the world - move with traffic, blend with the crowd, and do not be the guy that uses 10X the bandwith that everyone else does and you can have a little security in your obscurity. Mix that with the fact that there is only a tiny fraction of VM's customers that are even nerdy enought to try this and it becomes quickly not worth the money for these guys to fight this.

    The last BIG benefit you have here is that VM does not have you by the B@LL$ in a contract and if they are too big of jerks about this - you (and I for that matter) can just leave. If they ever do lock this down - I will.

    The worst case scenario on this is you get a strongly worded email that states that you need stop doing this. And when that email arrives - I will move on - maybe to the new T-mobile month to month plans.
    I'm all with you on the data usage. We pay for it, so we should use it as we see fit.
    Some people say "it clogs the network" or "if everyone tethered the network wouldn't be able to handle it."
    Well, that isn't really true. And if it is, then it is the responsibility of Virgin to make their service stable enough to handle it.
    And same goes for me, if Virgin cancels me, I can just move to Boost or something.
    I was curious if Virgin had actually got on anyones case yet.

    Sent from my LG-VM670 using Tapatalk
  17. #17  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Jus curious if anyone can tell me did vm ban tethering I havent been able to tether 4 last week I jus use it to update games on my old sprint epic for my 4 yr old to play with. When I turn on the widget my 3g turns off now? Any answers?
  18. #18  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    @ mknollman123 absolutely, 100% agree with you! I tether when I need to...like you said I am paying for "unlimited" DATA
  19. #19  
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    I can't imagine tethering with my VM connection, except in an emergency. The 3G speeds are so slow in our area it's kind of a non-starter.
  20. #20  
    notown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    The real question is not if the data is yours or not, but what will they do to those who don't abuse the network.

    Tethering was disabled for a reason, lets not forget that.

    I agree that it is our data and we should do with it as we please. Its only when people abuse it that it ruins it for everyone else. Whether or not you can prove it VM will say what they want and can do something about it. I tether my friends phone when he wants to browse on the go. ( that's all my friend can do since i get atrocious 3g in my location) anyway
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  21. #21  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    I have the grandfathered $40. ( Which I'm switching soon for a contract... So long VM!)
    I've been having network problems since Aug. and its unbearable. Anyway about a month ago, VM texted me and gave me a phone number to call in case I was still having problems. When I called it was a VM Tech/Call Center here in the US! It was GREAT, none of them were ed, they didn't have accents and there was no wait... Once i called and put in my options the phone rung once and was answered quick. After resetting my Data, and a bunch of other troubleshooting steps the Rep told me that i must have passed my cap. So I started asking questions about the grandfathered plans and the new ones, and about the cap, and she said that ALL plans, grandfathered and new, have a 2GB data cap, and once we exceed that limit, our speeds are throttled. She said that cap was put recently and wasnt announced. She said that's probably why I was having network problems, but I told her that my cycle had started less than a week before. So then she said that then my problem is that the network is congested in my area and they cant do anything.... Sucks.

    But yeah, that's what a US Rep told me, that there's a cap. I wouldn't doubt it.

    And those of you saying that if you were doing something wrong, VM would Email or contact you, You're Wrong. VM never issues out warnings, and never contacts you, unless youre running out of minutes or your balance is low.
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  22. #22  

    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Wow I can barely justify unlimited at $35 now it has a cap? Republic Wireless here I come.
  23. #23  

    Default

    I think i might go for Tmo's $30 Monthly4G plan.

    Sent from my VM670 using Tapatalk
    OV = Best Android phone to start off with. Best decision I've ever made with a phone. Best community (and biggest I've seen) of DEVs, Noobs and just normal people all together, helping each other tweak, hack, mod, etc.
    xD
  24. #24  
    GetDustin's Avatar

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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    Throttling or not, if my plan stays $25, I'm staying VM. But then again, I only thing tether my cm7 nook on the go.
  25. #25  
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    Default Re: Virgin Mobile tethering policy

    If you are smart about the tethering there should not be a problem. When this phone first came out there was a HUGE user base that was rooting and using tether apps to do everything from browser to play COD. Once the heavy users started getting canceled and VM said we are limiting the data soon they left.

    Most carriers wont say much unless you are using your phone as your primary source of inner webs.
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