Why Verizon and AT&T may be overcharging for their broadband coverage
New research by the New America Foundation (NAF) finds that AT&T and Verizon have significantly overcharged consumers for broadband in the US for years.
The findings, released in a report published today, provide the clearest picture yet of the pricing disparities between these two large internet providers.
“These data are consistent with previous studies that have identified overcharging in broadband as a key driver of poor consumer experience and lower broadband access,” said Sami Sancar, the NAF senior fellow who authored the report.
“Verizon and AT+ have done nothing to fix these problems, and consumers deserve better.”
The NAF found that AT+ and Verizon charge customers more for their basic broadband service than any other US ISP, even though they are ranked among the most transparent ISPs.
The report also found that Verizon’s broadband speeds are the highest of any US ISP.
“AT&T has consistently underpriced its basic broadband plans,” Sancarc said.
“We know this because the companies have made it abundantly clear that they are not going to fix the problems.
They don’t have a plan.
The only way they’re going to solve the problems is to get more people to pay more for faster broadband.
We’ve seen this in the last few years, and they’re not going anywhere.”
Sancarl said the data is particularly important because it shows that the FCC’s new broadband rules are the “largest single consumer protection initiative ever” in the country.
The FCC’s rules require internet providers to deliver internet speeds of at least 25Mbps (megabits per second) to at least 50 percent of all customers.
“The data we’ve collected shows that AT &&, and Verizon, have not only overcharged for broadband service, they’ve also been selling a substandard service,” Sancer said.
He added that the “price gouging” is also evident in a new FCC rule that allows internet service providers to charge companies for their own infrastructure upgrades.
The rule was announced in February and took effect in April.
It allows internet providers such as Verizon to charge ISPs up to $1,000 for any infrastructure upgrade, even if the company can’t afford it.
“If you look at how much companies are charging ISPs, you see that they’re charging more,” Sancers said.
Sancara said he and his colleagues have collected data from more than 200,000 consumers who signed up for a “commissioned survey” conducted by AT&&&T, Verizon and other internet providers between 2011 and 2017.
The survey asked the respondents to rate their broadband experience on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the worst.
The most common score in that period was 4.6 out of 5.
SANCAR said the survey results indicate that consumers are paying for the internet in ways they’re “just not getting anywhere else.”
“These are not good broadband plans, these are not affordable broadband plans that are going to get the people back on their feet and get them to use the Internet in a better way,” SANCar said.
The NAC found that the average monthly cost of an internet plan in the three years leading up to the FCC rule change was $70.
“This is an unprecedented rate of pricing,” SNCar said, noting that he’s not sure if this is a new trend.
“It’s not a small thing.
This is the first time in US history that you’re going up to a billion dollars in annual revenue in a year and getting people to spend money on things like wireless internet,” he said.
Verizon said in a statement that its internet speeds are “not exceptional.”
“Verizons broadband offerings provide consumers with the best available data at a fair price,” the statement read.
“When consumers buy and pay for service, we strive to provide a service that is affordable and provides high-quality speeds.”
AT&+, meanwhile, has been criticized for overcharging its customers, particularly in the rural areas of the US where the bulk of its broadband service is located.
The company has said that the $1 billion price tag for the latest generation of its DSL network is a “mistake” and that it is looking at ways to make its network more competitive.
SNCars report also said that ATs new policy will force the internet providers it has partnered with to offer better services to customers, including offering internet speeds as low as 30Mbps to customers that sign up for AT&s unlimited plans.
AT&t said in the statement that the company is “committed to delivering the best broadband service to all Americans.”
It added that AT is committed to providing its customers with the most affordable internet options available, including the fastest speeds.
“As the new Federal Communications Commission Chairman, I am committed to helping AT&ts broadband customers and all Americans enjoy the highest possible broadband speeds, as well as