5 Worst Broken Promises in Mobile Tech

Technology companies promise customers the moon and the stars nearly every time they launch a major new product or announce a new service. But they often leave us feeling broken-hearted as they don’t deliver on those promises.

Too often exuberant tech executives lead us down the path of mobile tech bliss, only to leave us stranded in the woods a few months later, scratching our heads and wondering what the heck happened to the killer features they touted during their latest over-produced keynote.

It seems that more often than not the products and services that are promised to propel consumers into the future never see the light of day or simply don’t live up to high expectations. Here’s a list of the most egregious broken promises in mobile tech.

Unlimited Data

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Unlimited Data

Back in the golden days, companies like AT&T and Verizon promised customers unlimited data. Unfortunately, not everyone agrees on the definition of Unlimited.

According to Miriam-Webster Dictionary, the definition of Unlimited is:

lacking any controls, unrestricted boundless, infinite not bounded by exceptions

As data speeds picked up and consumers started streaming music, movies and more, companies started adding an asterisk to their own definitions of unlimited:

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AT&T iPhone users were pressured to give up their unlimited data plans in favor of tiered data plans when making changes to their wireless plans. For example, AT&T customers that wanted to use the iPhone’s wireless hotspot feature had to give up unlimited data and sign up for a DataPro plan.

Verizon stopped offering unlimited data plans and now takes them away from customers who want to upgrade to a new phone at the discounted price offered to customers who sign a contract. Recently Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said that unlimited data plans are never coming back, which is at least some truth in this murky area.

Other providers, such as T-Mobile offer unlimited data, but limit the speed once users reach a certain threshold... which is kind of limiting.

Carriers like Virgin Mobile make and break the unlimited data promise on a daily basis. In the graphic below, Virgin Mobile advertises unlimited data, but only offers 2.5GB at full speed.

Unlimited data means about 2-3GB for most pre-paid carriers.

Sprint is a holdout, offering unlimited data plans without limits, but it has a smaller than average 4G LTE network and more coverage gaps than Verizon and AT&T.

Image via Sam Felder CC

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