Last week, MetroPCS, the nation’s fifth-largest wireless provider, announced a new scheme under which MetroPCS — not its customers — will decide which Internet sites and services are important. MetroPCS is advertising unlimited talk, text, “Web browsing” and YouTube at a base price of $40 per month -- with all other uses only available on higher tiers at a higher cost. The plans would effectively create a “walled garden” that excludes Skype, Netflix and other popular consumer Internet services, putting those service providers at a competitive disadvantage and restricting consumer choice and innovation.
Free Press Policy Counsel M. Chris Riley made the following statement:
"The FCC’s mobile broadband loopholes adopted in its December Net Neutrality order are already leading to anti-competitive, anti-consumer practices. The agency must act quickly to investigate MetroPCS’s service plans before similar blocking and content-based discrimination on wireless networks becomes an industry-wide problem.
“MetroPCS's practices are particularly problematic because, as the company itself recognizes, it disproportionately serves lower-income subscribers, the same audience that is increasingly relying on mobile access to the Web. A walled garden in mobile broadband leaves a large number of Internet users on the wrong side of the digital divide.”
To view a copy of the letter, click here: http://www.freepress.net/resource/letter-urging-fcc-investigate-metropcs