Tech by VICE

T-Mobile Won’t Count Some Video Streaming Services Toward Your Data Caps Anymore

Similar to its “Music Freedom” initiative, T-Mobile is now encouraging you to “binge on.”

by Rachel Pick
Nov 10 2015, 8:03pm

Image: T-Mobile

Tuesday, T-Mobile announced that it will no longer count certain video streaming services towards customers' data caps with a feature called Binge On.

As part of its bid to continually shake up the mobile carrier industry, T-Mobile occasionally launches "Un-Carrier" initiatives. Un-Carrier X, the tenth in the series of announcements, included a new gift to T-Mobile users: letting them stream unlimited data from a host of video streaming sites including Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, Watch ESPN, Showtime, Vevo, and more.

A year ago, T-Mobile announced a similar initiative to the one launched today: "Music Freedom," which allowed users unlimited data from music services like Pandora and Spotify. Taken together, the video and music initiatives will remove a lot of the concern for mobile users with limited data plans.

Not counting data consumed by mobile apps and services against data caps is known as "zero-rating," a practice that has drawn some criticism from net neutrality advocates because it gives an advantage to the zero-rated apps and services over others.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere also announced doubling data caps for the same price, and family plans where each family member gets the full amount of data on the plan—no more sharing. In his charismatic, youth-friendly style (he wore a velour hoodie and sipped a Red Bull), he ranted about the massive amount of money other carriers make off of overage fees and customers over-buying data.

T-Mobile's end game is simple: pull customers from AT&T and Verizon, the two giants of the mobile industry. With these enticements, T-Mobile provides a convincing argument for users to make the switch.