YouTube upset with T-Mobile over Binge On video optimizations

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YouTube is perhaps the biggest missing piece from T-Mobile’s Binge On free video streaming service, and we’ve heard before that T-Mo is working with Google on getting YouTube adding to Binge On’s free video streaming. However, now it sounds like getting YouTube into Binge On may be more difficult.

YouTube today expressed unhappiness with T-Mobile’s Binge On service, tell the Wall Street Journal that T-Mo is throttling its service. “Reducing data charges can be good for users, but it doesn’t justify throttling all video services, especially without explicit user consent,” a YouTube spokesman told the WSJ. YouTube went on to say that T-Mo is lowering the video quality of video that isn’t being streamed from one of the 24 services included in free Binge On streaming.

In response, a T-Mo spokesperson said that Magenta customers “love having free streaming video that never hits their data bucket” and enjoy “both the quality of their video experience and the complete control they have.” T-Mo went on to say that Binge On is in line with FCC regulations, can be turned off at any time by customers, and that any video provider can join by meeting some basic technical requirements.

While the highlight feature of Binge On is its free video streaming from 24 video services, it also optimizes “almost all other video streaming” to help users save data. This is likely what YouTube is unhappy about, as customers must opt out of the video optimizations, and not everyone realizes this. The video optimizations end up “throttling” the videos, resulting in a lower quality video being played to the user, and some folks may not know why the lower quality video is playing.

Back in November, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler didn’t seem to think that Binge On caused any issues, describing it as “highly innovative and highly competitive.” Earlier this month, though, the FCC asked to meet with T-Mobile to discuss Binge On and the concerns that the service “has harmed some users.” While the FCC hasn’t commented on YouTube’s complaint, it’s not going to help T-Mobile and Binge On heading into the FCC meeting. While Binge On can indeed save data for customers by streaming video free from 24 services and optimizing streams from others, it seems that the fact that all customers must opt out of Binge On to avoid video optimizations could end up harming T-Mobile.

T-Mobile has been asked to meet with the FCC regarding Binge On by January 15, so we may hear more about this whole situation sometime in the next couple of weeks. Until then, what do you think of Binge On? Are you happy with the service or are you frustrated with the optimizations that it makes to video?

Source: T-Mobile

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  • PeteJames1138

    I opted out because I have unlimited data anyway and don’t like the idea of throttling me for a worse video experience.

    • Phone Guy

      First off, the majority don’t have unlimited. So if 80 or 90% of the customers benefit, how does it even matter or who cares that you have unlimited data and don’t like the throttling. WTF? It’s an opt in- opt out service, anyway. Did the whole world want to know what PeterJames did because he has unlimited data? Save your comments for something that makes sense and contributes.

      • jonathan3579

        And what exactly is your comment contributing? Nothing. Pot, meet kettle..

      • PeteJames1138

        Whoa internet troll calm down. First off, I like how you act like you know what benefits 80-90% of customers. It’s not an opt in or opt out service and that’s what this article is about. It’s automatically in or you have to opt out. Just giving my opinion on this service which is what these comment boards are for. Maybe you should stay away from comment boards until you are old/mature enough to handle the emotions you might feel.

      • Botiemaster

        I challenge this statement because I vaguely recall the majority of tmo customers as having unlimited data, like 70%. It’s kind of like the top reason to switch. You would think it’d be cheaper prices but nobody cares. They see the unlimited data option and they’re sold as long as they aren’t grandfathered into old unlimited plans on other networks because let’s face it:Tmo ain’t first or even second when it comes to coverage.

        • Actually, prior to AMPED plans, their most popular plan was the 3gb plan.

    • John Doe

      File a FCC complaint so they question T-mobile about it. I am sure Youtube just grabbed the FCC’s attention.

  • NotRed

    Take that, YouTube Red!

    • patt

      Xposed YouTube background playback ssshhh ;)

  • FILA

    I dont know if this is a coincidence for me or T is really doing this, but has anyone else experienced a slow down on YouTube. Im on a unlimited plan, no binge on shit, and I pull down about 30Mbps or higher on LTE, and I get a lag on HS youtube video, I encounter buffer and it never used to be like that? Over crowded network? Its driving me nuts thou, it shouldnt do that

    • FILA

      and like most of us has seen now I logged into my T-Mobile account online, turned off Binge in the settings and now YouTube loads faster. Wasnt that a bitch

  • StankyChikin

    Should have made it opt-in for unlimited high speed data customers and opt-out for those on tiered plans.

  • mikeZo6

    Bottom line T-Mobile is raising prices on Data and lowering quality, look John Legere BS people are starting too see his true colors, Tmobile will be back in 4th place soon enough

    • Franke Hernandez

      Well what do ya know, It’s the Sprint employee Mike S. trolling a T-Mobile fan page. Shouldn’t you be busy attacking Sprint customers for complaining about their crappy service on Sprint’s Facebook page?

      • Fabian Cortez

        Very interesting.

        It seems they come out of the woodwork. Quick, turn on the kitchen lights!

        • Franke Hernandez

          Well when their own Sprint fan page hasn’t grown since it was created, they feel the need to troll elsewhere for attention. Pretty sad.

      • mikeZo6

        wrong mike been with Tmo 2001

        • TechnoRealz

          & apparently you like taking it up the wazzzooo with all this bad TMO services since 2001.

    • Fabian Cortez

      Bottom line T-Mobile is raising prices on Data

      Actually, the price per GB is cheaper.

      and lowering quality

      You. Can. Turn. It. Off.

      Nonetheless, I have to wonder how you felt when Sprint was limiting video streaming to 600 kbps without the ability for the user to opt out.

      Tmobile will be back in 4th place soon enough

      There is zero evidence to show that T-Mobile “will be back in 4th place soon enough.”

      • patt

        Mike is sprint or Verizon employee ;)

    • dtam

      are you trying to tell me that Tmobile is a business and needs to turn a profit? I think I missed that..

  • Jonathan Shaw

    Binge On’s technical requirements limit the content providers to technology that T-Mobile can easily detect and manipulate. For instance, they specifically exclude any provider that uses User Datagram Protocol (UDP) instead of Transport Control Protocol (TCP).

    I’m concerned that these types of limitations are going to limit novel, new providers from getting the same preferential treatment that T-Mobile’s current partners are afforded. If T-Mobile were ever to become a more significant carrier (in terms of market share), then this would hurt competition for smaller video content providers, too.

    Why can’t the mobile operators just offer “dumb pipes”? Why do they need to be manipulating data in this way?

    • Jonathan Shaw

      Also, I don’t see any option to disable or enable Binge On when I log in to my.t-mobile.com. I manage my family’s Simple Choice plan. I thought this was enabled now for all Simple Choice customers?

    • Jeremy Turnley

      Because of the way TCP/IP works. TCP, each packet has headers so you can identify, intercept, modify and resume the packet in transit. This is what they’re doing – grabbing the packets, compressing them, and sending them back out.

      UDP doesn’t have a full header on every packet – it just has enough information for the receiving device to know it’s part of a UDP stream, and where it belongs in that stream. This allows traffic to flow faster, since each packet is smaller, but if you interrupt the stream, it has to back up and resume from the last packet the receiver sent an “OK” response from. By its nature, you can’t modify a UDP stream in real time, because the interruption caused by modifying it would cause the stream to break and restart.

      • Justin Baldwin

        I guess I should also comment here and mention that packet order and ACKs are not a native UDP feature. It can be implemented easily though, and is probably used in most video streams anyway.

        TCP on the other hand have those features as part of the protocol standard.

    • Because then they’ll have to invest more and pass the cost to you and other customers who don’t care about your cottage video, instead of charging it specifically. Thanks to Binge On, others won’t have to subsidize your little video providers.

  • D. Duran

    This makes sense, they enabled Binge On by default for all customers, I even had it on my Unlimited plan and since its been on, I have noticed a significant throttle on my YouTube videos when trying to watch in 1080p. Just turned it off and I’m going to see if there’s a difference.

    UPDATE: I can now confirm that my YouTube videos and all other streaming videos now load significantly faster with BingeOn service disabled.

    • How can you disable it? Thanks.

      • JustSaying

        log into MyTMobile and you can turn it on or off.

      • D. Duran
      • D. Duran

        To disable/enable it through the T-Mobile My Account app:

        For postpaid accounts
        Access the My Account app.
        Select Account Info.
        Select Plans & Services.
        Select Add/Change Services.
        Under Binge On, tap the radio button next to OFF.
        Tap CONTINUE.
        For prepaid accounts
        Access the My Account app.
        Select Account Info.
        Select Plans & Services.
        Select Add/Change Services.
        In the list of services, tap the button next to Disable Binge On.
        Tap the green Add Service button and confirm.
        Tap Continue.
        Enter your PIN and click Accept.

    • Jeremy Turnley

      That’s because they are buffering and compressing packets on their end before they send them onto you. BingeOn takes all video packets and reduces the res to 640×480 (DVD quality), compresses them, and sends them on. This is of course going to take longer than just receiving the packets from the source unmodified.

      • D. Duran

        Ya, not counting towards your data, cool. Throttling speed and creating another “middleman”, not cool

      • Justin Baldwin

        That’s not how it works.

        • Jeremy Turnley

          I’m pretty sure that’s exactly how it works. If not, please let me know the technical details.

        • Justin Baldwin

          There is no “compression” on T-Mobiles side. The reduction to 480P is done by taking advantage of adaptive bitrate streams and connection-level throttling. There is only a negligible (if any) increase in latency for this process.

          What you’re actually talking about is actively re-encoding the video stream, which would be completely infeasible.

          Additionally, there’s not actually any packet manipulation going on. There’s no reason for it because the throttling and adaptive bitrates are used to force 480p quality. This is why there isn’t any issue with HTTPS. They can see the connection, they know it’s coming from a content server, they just throttle the throughput. No packet manipulation necessary.

          The issue with UDP is that it’s a connection-less protocol, so connection-level throttling isn’t viable. It would require a slightly more active system, reading at the IP or packet level, and watching (many) more ports. Though those packets do not have any standardized headers either, so there are definitely some technical aspects for them to work out.

          I think Binge On is a really awesome thing. I live in a pretty rural area without access to any wireline ISPs. I’m actually able to enjoy Netflix for the first time ever. My only qualm with the whole thing is that they claim there are “technical” reasons why they wont zero-rate all “optimized” streams. Well, if they can optimize them they can zero-rate them. They’ve effectively created a system where they are going to throttle all video streams, but only zero-rate them if the providers work with T-Mobile. It’s a little wonky. I think if it’s “optimized” it should be zero-rated (at least for plans that include that feature). I’d like to see this change, because it’s what Binge On is supposed to be about.

      • Marc

        Don’t think that’s how they do it. Wouldn’t be as easy with HTTPS connections…
        Instead they recognize the server and slow down your connection accordingly so the service automatically offers 480p video. So it’s degrading your experience, not optimizing it.

        • Jeremy Turnley

          Possibly, but if that were the case they wouldn’t require providers to use TCP; in fact If they were just doing that, they would probably require them to use UDP since it saves a lot of bandwidth for streaming transfers. The only reason they would require TCP is that they are doing something with packet manipulation.

  • Marcus

    Sign in to your T-Mobile account and select your Profile to turn the service off or on.

  • I have unlimited and never bothered to turn the thing off. I don’t really notice any difference in quality of the videos, and they seem to not have to buffer or get stuck in the middle of videos anymore. It may be that they’re a little slower to get started, but I haven’t noted that.

    • Jimmy James

      If you live where I live, you would notice a difference. Location location location.

  • Cam Fas

    I don’t mind binge if it helps provide better service for all. Part of the reasons they implemented this service as because it helped optimize traffic. I have unlimited data on my phone but have 5gb on two iPads. I leave it on so I can stream unlimited Netflix. It’s also nice because even though I have unlimited date I never hit the 23gig deprioritization limit which did affects me when in populated areas . As I would regularly surpass 23gigs just by watching two Netflix movies per week alog with a few YouTube reviews. Now that I am using YouTube red I would love for them to join in the binge. The quality isn’t as bad as most think. The majority of the time when I am at home base I am on wifi anyways so I’m not worried about binge since I can just flick it off.

    • Saul Viayra

      I have 3 tablets and 5 phones all with data and you can turn off each line So that you Keep binge on For tablet and off for my phones

  • guest

    I don’t want BingeOn, instead I would like a switch on all phones where you can switch the quality of the videos from 360p to 480p to 720p and 1080p, similar to the screen brightness switch.

  • YABD

    I turned my binge on off the first day. I need my videos all in 4k.

    • Cam Fas

      What phones support 4K?

      • gmo8492

        Sony Xperia Z5 premium, but it lowers the resolution to 1080p to save battery and not many apps support 4k streaming via mobile devices.

        • gpt2010

          Sony may 4k screens, but youtube and amazon video apps dont support 4k on mobile devices.

        • Jimmy James

          The highest YouTube supports on mobile is 1440p.

        • gmo8492

          Read my comment again, I said that most apps don’t support 4K. But I gave an example of a phone that supports that resolution.

      • Michael Barnes

        s6 and s6 edge video playback at 4k 30fps

        • Jeremy Turnley

          Their screens are only 2560×1440 (QHD, or “2k”), so even though you can play 4k you don’t get full benefits – most YouTube 4k videos now will stream at QHD, so no reason to waste bandwidth on 4k.

        • Cam Fas

          Looked up the specs the screen resolution has a maximum resolution of 1440×2650 from the manufactures website. Screen resolution is different from video playback. You may be able to record at 4K but you won’t be able to view 4K image quality on a 4K tv or computer.

        • Michael Barnes

          That’s the screen resolution the same specs from Samsung site “video playback 4k at 30fps”

          Not trying to prove anything that’s just what it says on there website

        • Cam Fas

          Video playback is at 4K but it won’t play back at 4K on your device. My iPhone has a screen res of 1080p it supports 4K video play back. If I play it back on my phone it won’t go past 1080p but if I play it back on a 4K panel on a computer or tv then it will show in 4K

      • Lumia 950, Lumia 950 XL, IPhone 6s Plus, Samsung Galaxy Note 5.

        • Cam Fas

          Screen resolution not camera capture.

        • YABD

          If YouTube gives you the option to play 4k videos, that means your phone have a screen for that. The camera is another business.

        • Cam Fas

          Good lord you can record 4k you can upload 4k but it will only play back at the max resolution even the manufactures admit it. There really are not many if any 4k panels sold in the usa on a phone. The highest resolution you can find at T-Mobile Att Verizon and Spent Pcs are 2k displays. Sorry make a phone call to the manufacture of your phone and they will explain the same thing too you.

        • Cam Fas

          Good lord it’s like talking to a wall. You can’t watch 4K content if your screen has a max resolution of 2k. Just because YouTube gives you the option doesn’t mean your device can support it. My computer has a 1080p screen even if I wished for 4K and selected it the content will only play at the max resolution possible. The iPhone has a 1080p screen but can record in 4K just like the galaxy note 5 has a 2k screen with 4K capture so guess what ? You can record in 4K but the only way you can view the context in 4K is if you play it out on a 4K tv or computer panel.

      • YABD

        LG G3

    • MadJoe

      You don’t even need to need 4k to be better off opting out. If you’re like me and prefer 720p you still need to opt out. 480p is atrocious except on the lowest end phones (still atrocious, just that they aren’t capable of delivering a better resolution anyway), and those are typically bought by people who probably don’t care about watching video on their devices. I don’t see a benefit to Binge On except marketing. Maybe it makes the network a little faster for those of us who opted out, maybe not.

      • patt

        +1 binge on is great but if you are on unlimited it should never be added automatically, my YouTube vids were slowed to 200 KB/s and I just switched 2 weeks ago from Verizon not complaining but… T-Mobile should only enable this on tiered plans.

  • vinnyjr

    No matter what you do or give away free someone is going to find something to complain about! Binge On is a great service, my sister who has a lower monthly data plan loves it, she watches Netflix all the time. I have unlimited data and rarely watch any videos so the first day it went live I shut it off. YouTube will eventually join in, it’s a no loose service, 480 video is pretty damn good on a small screen device. Thank You T-Mobile, Thank You John Legere.

    • MadJoe

      You’re missing the bigger picture and only focussing on your own experience. Try empathizing with the people who would not like to watch grainy video at 480p and can tell the difference. Try imagining paying for high speed data thinking the videos you watched on said high speed data (again, that you are paying for) are being delivered at a speed and quality that doesn’t match what you’ve been promised. That’s the crux. If I pay T-Mobile for 10GB of high speed data, and T-Mobile advertises that their high speed data is on par or better than the competition’s (which they do and was used as a basis for the decision to go with T-Mobile over the competition), and then delivers an experience sub-par to what the competition is delivering, then why am I paying for high speed data? Sure, websites load faster, and photos don’t take all day to download, but if the experience is crappy, none of that matters.

      On speed tests, I get >60Mb/s download at my house, but when streaming YouTube, it reverts to 480p unless I manually select a higher resolution and then it starts to buffer. I’ve opted out of BingeOn, so it shouldn’t, but it still does. And I rarely ever chose a higher resolution than 720p, which with a download speed of >60Mb/s, even 1080p shouldn’t buffer, but 720p does. It’s a little frustrating. I’m glad someone is looking into it, and if that means T-Mobile has to honor their agreement with people who chose to opt out, then all the better.

    • Android_God

      WOW! You win the T Mobile apologist award of the day.

    • J.J.

      i only watch the tube in 1080 or 1440 when available. 480 looks terrible. binge on is a great service it just needs to be an opt in service that leaves all non included video alone!

    • tmoapologist!

      480p on a 6 inch device looks near perfect…a little bit more detail that you notice going to 1080p or higher isn’t worth the data. Honestly it isn’t even normal 480 p. They did some hackery to up the quality and optimize the data usage further. Its like 480p+

  • john

    it doesnt just throttle video services, i can swear by it that it throttles everything, even my youtube, instagram, and facebook clips are lagging. gunna give it a couple more days and then unsubscribe if i keep noticing this issue.

  • JMccovery

    I have Unlimited prepaid, had BingeOn enabled, never had a single YouTube video throttled or reduced in quality, disabled it, exact same experience as before.

    • patt

      With binge on it did throttle me to 200 KB/s, after turned it off it was all good.

    • Acdc1a

      I’m in a similar boat. Binge on is enabled on my unlimited plan and no optimization on YouTube.

    • StevenM

      Same for me, and even if it did, I can still see the video and hear the audio. I don’t need HD quality.

    • Jimmy James

      My YouTube app sometimes defaults to 240p if I leave at automatic. Also, if I set it to 720p or 180p, it pauses multiple times during the video. I have unlimited and turned BingeOn off, so it doesn’t affect me now. Could just be my location.

      • JMccovery

        The same used to happen to me way before BingeOn, and sometimes, it was network issues; other times, it was the app/phone being derpy.

        I do wonder, though, how in the world did cope with watching video on 3G/HSPA networks?

        People really have become spoiled…

  • kevev

    Remember this?? http://gizmodo.com/5391707/losing-net-neutrality-the-worst-case-scenario This is our future.

    Binge On is cable packaging subscriptions. And No! Nothing is ever free. So don’t even use that to defend Binge On.

  • John

    When you turn BingeOn on or off it now says allow 2 hours to reflect on your account. I don’t recall seeing this before and at the press conference they said it would be immediately changed. I too was experiencing high rates of lag and buffering with it turned on. (Note I easily get over 100 Mbps most of time.) I went to turn it off and still was buffering a lot. It wasn’t until I restarting my phone that YouTube was working as it should. I am an avid T-mobile supporter, but this really isn’t right. On my Note 5 you can definitely see a difference between 480p and 1080p. I think it’s a great idea for netflix because of the video length, but not great for YouTube. Usually when I’m using cellular for YouTube it is when I’m watching/showing clips I saw with friends. Talk about embarrassing showing them the grainy quality of your new high-res device.

  • TechnoRealz

    Could BingeOn be causing issue with YT on my home Wifi also?

    I have BingeOn turned on.
    I have TMO Wifi Calling turned on.

    But the other night casting YT to a TV on my home WiFi – there was a lot of buffering & lag which had never appeared before.

    Everything worked off my tablet as normal though.

    • Marc

      Nope. If the data is coming through your WiFi network it doesn’t get degraded, aka. “optimized”. Try to replicate the situation and see if the phone was pulling data through your home WiFi or it it was only connected to your WiFi.

  • Jimmy James

    I can confirm this. My YouTube app sometimes defaults to 240p if I leave at automatic. Also, if I set it to 720p or 180p, it pauses multiple times during the video. I have unlimited and turned BingeOn off, so it doesn’t affect me now.

    • Saul Viayra

      I did the same yesterday

  • Android_God

    This is going to keep the tmobile fanboy apologists very busy.

    • TechnoRealz

      Or it could be just a technical glitch & the TMO haterz are grasping at conspiracies. I don’t see any TMO fans jumping to SPCS or VZW that’s for sure.

      • Android_God

        Google is the one who brought this up! They partner with t-mobile on project fi so I’m sure they’re not bringing this up lightly. What conspiracy?

      • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

        More than likely they are beta testing binge on during the unlimited data promotion to see what their capacity is. My guess would be they are turning it on and off globally to test the effects and differences on their network

    • nps_ca

      I’m what you would label a “fanboy” and I will agree with Google on this – why is a service NOT part of BingeON getting degraded. If it’s counting towards your data bucket – its violating FCC’s stipulation on degrading services.

  • JJCommonSense

    As a TMO fanboy, I have to say that I am a bit disappointed if theyre “optimizing” videos that are not a part of Binge On… if a customer uses BingeON for Netflix but wants to see Youtube, that youtube should come out of their data allotment at whatever quality the customer selects in the app itself.. They shouldnt be “optimizing” video and then having it come out of the customers highspeed data allotment. This does make it seem a bit shady and hopefully TMO will correct it. I have unlimited high speed data so no reason to sign on with BingeOn, however I support their efforts to be innovate and be competitive.. just do it the RIGHT way.. no sneaky shyt!

    • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

      Try data stash cap changed to 20gb with only 30 days to opt out without even so much as a txt msg warning! That’s low. Also they’ve mentioned many times that binge on does everything not only the services included in binge on

  • Ordeith

    T-Mobile’s coverage is so poor the network is practically self-degrading. Google must have had a time of it, determining if the streaming quality was due to policy or the network.

  • MisterSuperGod

    Anyone get their free movie stream from Vudu or whatever it is?

    • william43

      I just got Binge On activity a few weeks ago I think you have to wait until the first billing cycle and then go to the website to obtain the code.

    • RosynaKeller

      The free 480p VUDU movie reward doesn’t start until January 1st. It appears to be a $4.99 value.

  • Matt

    Cry me a river, YouTube. Consumers like being able to save data. Why doesn’t YouTube work with T-Mobile instead of bitching. It’s not like T-Mobile has been unwilling. Binge On works brilliantly with services like Netflux, Hulu, and Crackle.

    • Chris

      It’s a fact that T-mobile seems to default customers to 480p even if BingeOn is off. I have this problem every time and I have to switch to 720p or 1080p to watch good videos cause 480p looks grainy on my 1440p phone. Then once you switch to 720p it takes forever to load even if speed test shows that you have adequate speeds.

      And I pay for the truly unlimited data. I’m not abusing it, I’d just like to use whatever I paid for.

      • william43

        If the complaint is about the default for all users, even those who don’t enroll to BingeOn than that is an issue that Tmobile should resolve.

      • Gardo

        I just think they should have it off by default instead of on, that way is a voluntary thing and not imposed.

        • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

          Only 5% would ever enable it. Almost no one keeps with tmobile news. What they should have done was opt in if your data stash would be capped!! I had to scramble to opt out before my stash was capped to 20gb. Fortunately i still retain my 120gb limit. But that was low. Flipping a switch is easy but changing a critical feature permanently without even a txt msg warning is just crazy.. Makes me wonder how long before they try to take my unlimited data stash again!!#

      • Tinger12

        I just turned off BingeOn on my line today and YouTube defaults to 720p on my LG V10. Now, whether T-Mobile changed things up after this article or not, the notion that they default to 480p with BingeOn flipped on or off is not true, at least not that I’ve experienced today.

      • vinnyjr

        That isn’t true, have 3 different devices on T-Mobile and Binge On is shut off. My YouTube videos default to 720 or higher. Must be a setting on your account that is causing this.

        • Chris

          I have BingeOn Off. And before the BingeOn feature was introduced, my phone has been fine.

          Honestly, I don’t see the issue now which is quite weird that when this issue started making rounds. It’s suddenly fixed.

    • Android_God

      Why doesn’t T-Mobile simply not mess with YouTube?

  • Jack

    What a bunch of cry babies.

  • Alex Hutchins

    A workaround for this is to turn on a VPN, that way T-Mobile can’t see it is a video. I hope they resolve this problem though; I am unlimited, I don’t need my video degraded.

    • patt

      a workaround is to turn off binge-on.

      • Alex Hutchins

        The issue people are having is that even with binge-on off, video services are still being throttled. That’s what this whole issue is about.

        • vinnyjr

          I have 3 devices on T-Mobile, Note 5, iPhone 6S and the iPad. I have no issues with Binge On, I turned it off the day it went live. I watch videos on YouTube at the highest quality and I’ve never experienced any buffering. Just the opposite, videos load very fast, so fast the video is completely loaded within one minute on a 10 minute video. People complain about anything, even when you give them something free they find something to cry about. I find my experience with T-Mobile to be better than any Carrier in the Country and I’ve been with them all. Thank You T-Mobile, Thank You John Legere.

        • Alex Hutchins

          I’m not complaining, I’m just letting people know that if they are one of the people that are running into this problem, they can use a VPN to circumvent the throttle (binge on isn’t turning off server side for some people, even though they turned it off in their account, it isn’t a majority, but some people are encountering it). :P

        • Chris

          Weird. On my previous comment, I’ve had issues even with Binge On Off. But ever since this thing came out and sine my last comment, I haven’t had any issue. My phone now keeps on highest quality videos on youtube whereas before it defaults to 480p even if I have adequate speeds.

        • patt

          I only had issues with binge – on enabled / when off it’s working perfectly.

        • Pete

          the issue is that youtube feels people were not adequately notified about the binge on program because its an “opt out” program. Youtube feels not everyone would know that the video was “optimized” by tmobile and blame poor service on youtube.

  • thatphonefreak

    I’m not sure why I should care. Any video I watch on YouTube looks fine on any of my higher end devices. Very rarely do I have any issues with lag or pausing as well. I am more concerned about recent experiences with customer service and how that is starting to go down the toilet.

    • Charmed79

      I know right? I have yet to have any issues with how videos look on my phone, looks fine to me, some people just want it all i guess lol

      • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

        We just don’t want others to decide what we should want. We want to decide that for ourselves

        • Charmed79

          I can understand that

  • Gardo

    Go to your account settings and just turn it off, I did it, I don’t need throttling on my unlimited data.

    • Philip

      The webpage account settings? Where? Please give details.

      • Gardo

        You have to do it from a PC, go to T-mobile.com, enter to my T-mobile with your phone number and password, then go to profile at the top of the website, go to media settings and there turn off binge on. That’s it, it will tell you that the change will take effect in a couple of hours and that’s it. Enjoy.

      • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

        Under profile then media settings

        • Irfan

          Cool man , this is awesome i just turn it off …thanks

        • VirusZer0

          Yea tmo should make it more clear to users that they have binge on enabled and an easy way to turn it off… It’s a bit ridiculous how they got it hidden away in settings somewhere you’d never find it…

  • I don’t have any use for Binge On at this time, since there’s nothing on the NBC Sports App that I currently watch. I have to wait until July 1, 2016 to see if Binge On does what it promises.

    Google can whine all they want. They’re the ones who pulled YouTube off Windows phones. I’ve no sympathy for them.

    • Live by the sword, die by the sword.

    • Irfan

      Boss they pulled youtube app from windows because MS made that app with out Youtube permission plus no add support which YouTube create revenue ..

      • Still not an excuse for what Google did to Windows phone.

      • ianken

        You forgot to add the part where msft offered to include ad support in their client if Google provided an api to do so. Google just wanted to be a dick.

    • Chris

      You don’t need an app though. Just watch it on browser. So long as Windows phone supports HTML5.

  • Vicky Stromberg

    The purpose of compression… good compression… is to improve quality. But T-Mobile is basically saying “Dear Customers Familliar with our network coverage: Our New Low Quality video standard is going to look terrible, but if you like it, you’ll be able to change from UNLIMITED service to a 3GB plan.

    Problem is that they don’t tell customers that the new price on the “unlimited” plan is $95/month for one phone.

    Either way, T-Mobile is doing is using Compression to launch a feature the network can’t adequately support.. It’s disingenuous.

    • RosynaKeller

      This isn’t compression by T-Mobile. It uses throttling to dramatically decrease the bandwidth to certain servers. As video services use adaptive bitrate streaming to give a better user experience, this reduced bandwidth results in a 480p stream being chosen.

      T-Mobile itself isn’t touching the files, just throttling bandwidth. That’s why it works with YouTube and Netflix which otherwise encrypt video.

      • Vicky Stromberg

        If it was just thorttling, they’d call it something like “Unlimited 2.5G Speed”

        But it isn’t. Where it gets interesting is when YouTube said they believe the video service is being degregated through something similar to a man-in-the-middle attack which changes the video information (stream) to meet a network specification T-mobile invented.

        I’m not so sure why people want any kind of service provider that changes data while in transit. It’s clever because T-Mobile doesn’t have to build additional capacity into its network.

        • RosynaKeller

          It is just throttling to specific servers. It is not possible for T-Mobile to change the YouTube video stream due to encryption so it is not equivalent to a man in the middle attack. It uses “Quality of Service” methods to throttle.

          You can confirm it is throttling because other operations on YouTube become increasingly slower while video is playing back when Binge On is on but they continue to be fast if Binge On is disabled.

          And no, it’s not clever, it’s just the cheapest and easiest way to do something.

        • ianken

          It is throttling. Netflix encrypts their deliveries, there is almost no way for tmo to control stabbing bandwidth other than throttling.

          Never mind that re-encoding would be very expensive.

          The other alternative is that tmo could intercept the manifest request from the client and remove the HD stream references. And if I was Netflix or Google and that was happening, I’d sue.

  • disqus_DFnvXJ7c9h

    As i noted in previous posts. Tmobile is no doubt beta testing binge on during the unlimited 3 month data promotion. It’s a perfect chance to test it across all customers who have free reign and see just how much capacity they have with binge on enabled and everyone on unlimited. It probably will help them figure out how much money they need to put into expansion vs marketing for more subs. I’m sure they are turning on system wide binge on for periods of time to test binge on. Work in the tech field and this theory will make perfect sense to you.

  • Kelijah

    YIKES. I’ve mainly been using YouTube because I thought it was nobrainer and apart of Binge On. I just got an alert from Tmo and I was totally confused.

  • Irfan

    before month when T-Mobile announced Binge, i notice that on T-Mobile LTE even i have Nexus 5X which has Cat6 Advance i am not able to run 1080p videos at all , i test on other phones by replacing Sim cad ( Galaxy s5) ..average speed test i always got 20mpbs but no chance to have 1080P you tube or any other network , even no more espn on HD , means with out Binge On package T-mobile do not offer full streaming service any more , they start throutthling video streaming .. and thats sucks ..( Tested Areas : Alexandria VA, Oxon Hill MD, Washington DC 14 St)

    • schweddy

      turn off binge on…

  • jamal saleh

    I had the same issue thought it was just me. Could not play any videos above 480p on youtube. Called them and removed bingon and my 1080p videos were loading just fine again.

  • VirusZer0

    I disabled it as soon as it was out. It’s really stupid for it to be on by default on an unlimited plan… I’ve had friends that use it rave about how it works even when tethering to tablets but others complain about how it interferes with not just videos but even other services like Apple’s AppStore. Out of curiousity I enabled and encountered similar issues… It really is quite great how you can stream unlimited Netflix for those not on unlimited data but there must be an easier way to toggle it, let users know somehow they’re on BingeOn (maybe via a text message; maybe even turn on and off by texting a particular number?), having it off by default on unlimited data plans and of course fix some of these issues like the AppStore problems. Implementing these would make BingeOn MUCHHH better.