Ever since, the dismissal of Net neutrality, ISPs were held accountable for internet throttling by the FCC. The change in the rules allowed ISPs to throttle the user’s connection without having a legitimate reason.
Moreover, ISP’s have specifically developed software-filters that they use to throttle internet connections of its users that have a high bandwidth usage. Not only that, but special filters are also developed to keep track of user activities on the internet.
How to check if you’re being throttled by your ISP?
- Run a speed test and note down the results. Try speedtest.net
- Now, install a VPN service.
- Again run a speed test and compare it with previous results.
Note: If you see a positive sign in your latest speed results then you should continue to use a VPN to avoid throttling.
Best VPN to Stop Throttling
Luckily, I had never faced ISP throttling because the country I live in (Australia) has laws against ISP’s throttling the internet. However, a friend of mine, who was the user of Comcast is facing the throttling problem.
As a result, he started experimenting with VPNs to find out if they’re actually worth it? And can they easily bypass ISP throttling while achieving fast speeds?
He used NordVPN for that reason and found good results. It’s like a 5% to 6% reduction to our regular internet speed, which is perfect and supposedly occurs due to heavy-encryption.
Does That Make Sense?
Yes, once you connect to a secure VPN, Your ISP can’t know what activities you’re involved in, and it’s because of encryption. That means the filters of ISP goes limited.
Recognize and Bypass ISP Throttling
Most of the time when you face internet throttling, these are the culprits behind it.
You can identify the data throttling problem and implement its particular solution.
- Delaying bills – If an ISP detects a regular pattern of delaying bill payments, they can participate in internet throttling.
- Torrenting/Streaming – Most internet users complain that they experience slow internet when they start torrenting or streaming Netflix in HD quality or even worse, 4K. This is true because ISPs tend to throttle a connection if they catch a system indulging in heavy tasks like torrenting or video consumption.
- Online Gaming – Online gaming has come a long way these days and the amount of bandwidth they use is very large. This can put an extra load on the network and be a reason to throttle your speed.
- Too many users – This point is self-explanatory because as users, connected to a single network, increase, your internet is bound to be throttled. This can be especially true at peak times between 6 pm and 11 pm when everyone is home streaming Netflix.
Torrenting/Streaming HD video and playing online games are the main causes of internet throttling over a network. After a lot of research and analysis in online communities, I have discovered a legitimate VPN to be the most effective method to bypass ISP throttling in this scenario.
Note: If something is still not clear to you about the throttling of your bandwidth, you can continue to read until you get a complete understanding of it.
What Is Internet Throttling?
Internet throttling can be defined as the intentional interference in your broadband connection by the Internet Service Provider (ISP).
How do they interfere? The answer is simple.
ISPs slow down your internet connection deliberately. It can occur during any task you perform on the internet and when caught, ISPs give the excuse of preventing network congestion due to a large number of bandwidth consumption and requests by the consumers.
It was very late until throttling became well known amongst internet users and ISPs admitted that it had been going on for quite a while. ISP throttling is difficult to identify since various algorithms are running for the purpose to regulate internet data on specific activities.
Problems because of ISP Throttling?
Internet throttling disrupts your online experience to an extreme extent. Some symptoms that your ISP is throttling your connection can be:
- Long loading times or buffing while streaming HD video on YouTube, Netflix etc.
- Lag spikes, high latency issues in gaming.
- Higher estimated time of arrival (ETA) of files while torrenting.
These are the negative effects that internet throttling can impose on your online experience.
However, you can bypass ISP throttling by configuring a VPN on your device as it forms a separate encrypted lane. Moreover, it adds a layer of anonymity along with fast speed.
How To Bypass ISP Throttling with a VPN?
People who face this problem use a VPN service to bypass throttling because it encrypts all the data packets by sending it through a secure pipeline.
When the data goes through this process it becomes undetectable, ISPs cannot decrypt that information and see what activities a user is performing. They can not see if you are gaming, streaming or downloading files.
Best VPNs to Stop ISP Throttling
When looking for the best VPN to stop throttling, you should look for a variety of factors.
- You must check out the security protocols that will ensure your online presence. (You want OpenVPN)
- The VPN must have Kill Switch. It will not leak your DNS when your connection drops.
- You need a VPN with fast servers so you minimize buffering.
- No-logs policy so nothing can be traced to you. (Think torrenting)
- Some type of guarantee so you can get your money back if it doesn’t work.
- Allows Torrents.
NordVPN is a privacy-conscious VPN and is located in Panama. It is considered as one of the safest and fastest VPNs to avoid throttled connections which a layman or IT expert can use.
It uses extraordinary features such as Kill Switch, NAT firewalls, and strong protection protocols to secure your connection on the web.
- Applies a double VPN for the safety of the transaction.
- Deducts the malware and blocks ad appearance.
- Easy to set up on multiple devices.
- Strict No-logs policy.
- 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Superfast speeds.
- Cheaper option.
Are you fed up with a throttled connection and looking for the perfect solution to bypass it? ExpressVPN should be your solution. It secures your WiFi connection and safeguards your personal information.
There are no delays when you are streaming any service and you can enjoy server switching with no limits.
- Dedicated servers for P2P network and Streaming.
- Free access to the world of the internet.
- 24/7 customer support.
- Zero-logs policy.
Bypass ISP Throttling on Android
Android users face the speed dropping issues frequently, especially when they’re streaming or downloading. This is extremely frustrating for its users and turns them towards a VPN software to solve the problem.
A VPN disables the ISP throttling restriction and stabilizes the network speed. It doesn’t only bypass the throttling on android devices but also protects the sharing of data over external servers.
To avoid such a throttled connection, follow the below procedure and get rid of the slow internet.
- Get a reliable VPN service.
- Go to the ‘Official Site’ of VPN and ‘Sign Up’ your account.
- Download and install the VPN client on your Android phone.
- Enter your Log-In ID and Password.
- Select the nearest ‘VPN Server’ Location.
- Click the ‘Connect’ option.
ISPs allocate a specific bandwidth limit for all users, exceeding the usage limit can initiate bandwidth consumption. There are apps available for Android users that help in consuming less data which includes Onavo Extend and OperaMax.
Moreover, there is a feature in android phones called “Data Compression”, it is used to reduce the bandwidth usage that can prevent exceeding data-cap limits which in turn reduces the chance of getting throttled by ISPs.
To enable the android phone built-in data compression option which sustains the bandwidth use the mentioned steps:
- Go to > ‘Settings’.
- Tab > ‘Bandwidth Management’.
- Select ‘Reduce Data Usage’ to enable compression.
Bypass ISP Throttling on iPhone
iPhone has gained overwhelming popularity among mobile users all around the world. This is because the features included in the iPhone are unique and different from other smartphones. Also, the iPhone is considered the finest device for maintaining the quality of those features.
Unfortunately, this bling has shaded some of the flaws of the iPhone, mainly speed. Users need to bypass the speed limitations while streaming to keep a decent user experience.
Internet users are applying different methods to bypass ISP throttling on iPhone. A VPN is an excellent option that enhances the network security which makes your streaming secure without dropping the speed.
You can follow these steps to bypass throttling on iPhone while streaming the videos.
- To choose a VPN service for iPhone.
- Visit the VPN website and create your VPN account.
- Download and install the VPN app on your iPhone.
- Once the installation process gets completed, activate your VPN client.
- Choose ‘VPN Server’ and click ‘connect’.
Avoid ISP Throttling on Windows
Users not only experience the dropping of connection on smartphones and tablets but on laptops and PCs as well. Many users have complained about bandwidth throttling when they were browsing the internet. Usually, apps like Skype and download manager use internet data. By closing these apps the browsing will consider a massive change in speed.
Also, you can bypass ISP throttling and experience the quality of internet browsing by applying some tricks. The users of Safari and Opera can bypass throttling by enabling the ‘data saving mode’. This will reduce overall data compression in a quick time.
These are the steps to enable data compression mode on windows:
- Go to > ‘Browser Settings’.
- Tab the ‘Bandwidth Management’.
- Now click ‘Reduce Data Usage’.
- Check the ‘Enable Compression’.
ISPs That Are Infamous for Throttling
Research disclosed by Bloomberg revealed a certain trend of ISP throttling the internet. The research can be confirmed by going through the terms and conditions of subscription plans provided by ISPs.
Spectrum Throttling (Time Warner Cable)
Spectrum’s official website states that they use common network management policies that are consistent with industry standards. Well, it’s not good news for the consumers of Spectrum.
By agreeing to their Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) you are giving them your consent for throttling your internet. Nobody goes through policies, which is why you can’t stand your ground in court.
The interesting part is that they admit that they will deal with network congestion by penalizing users with high bandwidth usage.
According to Spectrum, once they start throttling users will face higher download and upload times, higher latencies while gaming and many more problems. Completely ruining your experience by throttling.
This kind of ISP Throttling is avoidable by using a VPN. The function of the VPN manages the lack of speed through its own servers.
Back in 2007, Comcast was caught while throttling the BitTorrent traffic. Fast forward to 2008, the FCC passed an order that compelled Comcast to stop its illegal network practices.
However, a court overruled that decision taken by the FCC, the agency in-charge of Net-neutrality. After this, Comcast decided that it was the appropriate time to introduce a “protocol-agnostic” approach to internet throttling. It meant that only the users utilizing high bandwidth will be penalized with throttling.
According to an announcement made by Comcast, they removed a throttling system from their network that was deployed back in 2008, to throttle internet users who consume higher bandwidth most of the time in a day.
The data-cap policy is the same, users still have to pay extra $10 for 50GB bandwidth once they exceed the current data limit that is 1TB.
In 2014, the FTC claimed that AT&T was misleading more than 3 million consumers with their legacy unlimited plans. They failed to disclose their policy regarding the terms and services of their plans and their network throttling policies.
FCC revealed at court, that AT&T was involved in internet throttling practices since 2011 and at times were slowing down internet speeds by 90%. Upon which AT&T responded and claimed that the customers were aware of their internet throttling policies and terms and service since 2011 and that they were completely transparent about it.
AT&T agreed on not to pursue the case in the Supreme Court but instead, they were looking to negotiate with the FCC. The throttling case came to an end, without information being disclosed about the terms they agreed on in the settlement offer.
Back in 2018, Verizon threatened public safety by throttling the unlimited plan of Santa Clara Fire Department. OES 5262 is an emergency vehicle that requires internet service to track, manage and transmission of resources but since Verizon throttled the internet connection to such an extent that it was rendered useless.
To tackle this situation, the public-safety representatives had to switch to other network operators and use their own data-plans using their personal devices to complete the requirements related to internet service for the vehicle.
Users are seen complaining about the internet throttling with speeds not exceeding 50 Kilobytes on an unlimited plan. It doesn’t matter if they’ve exceeded the monthly limit or they haven’t used one bit of the plan. Verizon throttles them anyways.
Here’s another case where not only do they throttle the connection but also impose a data-cap after they’ve exceeded a certain threshold.
Consumers are angry that they were promised data prioritization not throttling to the point that the service is rendered useless and Verizon failing to provide satisfaction to their consumers.
There has been a trend in internet throttling that it’s done to prevent congestion on networks. But is that really the case? T-Mobile claims that its internet plans are actually unlimited as they promised.
Recently, users started facing throttling on T-Mobile while they were consuming video content on the popular platforms, Netflix and YouTube. This was brought to light on Reddit when video content being streamed was limited to 480p quality.
Another thing to note is that throttling might occur on your connection if you exceed the imposed data cap limit of 50GB. It’s confirmed by T-Mobile themselves if you live in an area that has network congestion and you have exceeded the limit you will face slower speeds compared to other subscribers.
Data plans aren’t unlimited though. You’d expect a company of such caliber to offer unlimited data but that’s not the case. There’s a limit of 5GB which when exceeded sends you back to the old age of 2G speeds.
Bypass T-Mobile Throttling
To experience the regular speed of the internet, complete the following steps to bypass T-Mobile data throttling in the quickest manner.
- Go to “settings.”
- Select: “Wireless & Network”, > Mobile Network.
- Tap: on “Access Point Names” > T-Mobile APN and scroll to APN type.
- Tap: on “APN Type” and edit it by adding “dun” at the end.
- Restart your device.
Am I being Throttled? Run Speed Test to Know.
You need to make sure that the problem that we are facing is indeed internet throttling. And to determine if our internet is being throttled, you have to rely on a few different tools. These tools are capable of providing clear results about your connection.
Internet Health Test
To determine if you’re being throttled here is an Internet Health Test tool. The tool was developed by people who believed in the freedom of the Internet. This tool compares the different variations in speed.
If there is less difference between the tests, there’s less chance of a consumer being throttled. You should check the tool out if you are concerned about throttling.
Is ISP throttling illegal?
No, throttling done by ISPs can not be considered illegal. When Net neutrality was in-order, ISPs were held responsible for their acts of malpractices by the FCC. Ever since Net neutrality laws were sent down the drain. ISPs have the power to do anything they want to your connection.
Whether it be prioritizing specific content, throttling your internet connection, anything. With no monitoring body over the ISPs, they can indulge in malpractices and ruin user experience without anyone holding them responsible.
ISP Throttling while Torrenting?
Torrenting is the most used architecture for downloading content, globally. Statistics reveal that the number of people who visited piracy websites is in billions.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that torrenting is used just too illegally download copyrighted content. Peer-to-Peer architecture is used to download legitimate files such as open-source operating systems, for example, Ubuntu.
Since the number of people involved in torrenting is high, ISPs throttle the internet to stop you from downloading through the P2P architecture.
Comcast, Verizon, and Cox are known to throttle connections that are involved in torrenting. According to ZDNet, Comcast throttles 12% of internet connections, whereas Cox and Verizon interfere with 13% and 9% connections, respectively.
Bypass Throttling to Speed up Torrents
In order to bypass throttling while torrenting, you need a VPN subscription that doesn’t forbid torrenting on their servers.
- They must have ‘dedicated P2P servers’.
- Confirm that the VPN has high-grade encryption.
- ‘Kill-Switch’ makes your identity remains anonymous throughout the download period.
- ‘No-logs policy’, so that there will be ‘no history’ of your activities.
Netflix has more than 167 million consumers (subscribers) as of this year and is expected to increase due to the high-quality content they are known for and the coronavirus making everyone stay home. Users streaming on Netflix consume more bandwidth than usual, which increases the odds of getting throttled by ISPs.
AT&T and Verizon are the two main carriers that are notorious for throttling users that are involved in streaming Netflix content.
To enjoy high-quality movies and T.V shows, what is the solution of Netflix throttling? How can one completely avoid throttling? The answer lies within your grasp.
Stop Throttling on Netflix
To Stop Netflix throttling, opt a VPN that’s compatible with Netflix. You can expect the following features in a Netflix compatible VPN.
- There must be ‘dedicated servers’ for Netflix-Streaming.
- VPNs can be used to stream geo-locked content.
Lightning-fast speeds and have the capability to protect you from unwanted ISP throttling.
ISP Throttling on YouTube
YouTube is a video streaming platform used by billions of people every day for a variety of reasons. Some use it for learning, others use it for entertainment.
One thing that remains common throughout the world is throttling. ISPs throttle YouTube because it has the capability to leverage all available bandwidth and increase the load on servers.
Recently, AT&T was caught throttling popular platform, YouTube. The report disclosed that the telecommunications company was throttling YouTube 74% of the time.
People who’re witnessing throttling on YouTube?
Have you ever watched YouTube and suddenly you experience a drop in video quality? You might be the victim of ISP throttling. How will you determine internet throttling then?
By using the tool provided by Google itself, you can make use of google video quality report. It shows you the kind of speed you’re getting while on YouTube.
Bypass ISP throttling on YouTube?
In order to bypass ISP throttling on YouTube, you need a VPN with the following features:
- High speeds
- Kill Switch
- A wide array of servers
These features are necessary for different reasons. However, you do not have to waste your time searching for a VPN that satisfies the above criteria. You are already aware of those VPNs that can stop ISP throttling once and for all.
ISPs have been abusing their powers ever since Net-neutrality was laid off. Making false claims at every point in time, to increase their conversions but failing to provide what they marketed in the first place.
Verizon and AT&T are two big examples of abusive power. ISPs were involved in internet throttling since 2011 when nobody had a clue that it was even possible.
To get back your right to use the free internet without any problems with restrictions and throttling. You need to follow the above process of bypassing the ISP throttling. The only effective way to get rid of this problem is to use a VPN.