Remember when Verizon throttled video streaming on its network to 480p on smartphones and 720p on tablets back in August? That was fun, wasn’t it? Well, it looks like Big Red found a way to give back your precious full-quality video streaming on its network: by charging you for it.
Starting November 3, customers have the option to stream 4K-quality video on Big Red’s network, but you will need to cough up an additional $10 per month for the privilege. Details are a bit sparse at the moment, but according to CNET, videos will be streamed at their original resolution. However, since not everyone carries a device with a 4K display, the quality will depend on your device.
On one hand, I can’t fault Verizon, a company, for making a business move. Big Red might have followed T-Mobile‘s lead and offered unlimited data plans of its own, but that reportedly came at the cost of network quality. It also bears mentioning that Verizon is not the only major US carrier to limit video streaming quality on a cellular network – AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint are just as guilty of pulling similar moves.
At the same time, I can’t help but feel icky about such a move. It’s one thing to limit video streaming quality and give the option to remove that limit at no extra cost. It’s another to charge folks for that choice, and Verizon plans are already expensive as they are now.