11-13-17 08:43 PM
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  1. jlinc's Avatar
    AT&T replied to the FCC and basically said "**** off." Here is my response back to the FCC, which will (for now anyway) keep the complaint open:

    Gentlemen;

    I confirm my conversation with AT&T but find their response unsatisfactory for the following reasons:

    1. The other device was not manufactured by AT&T *either* (the one on which the tethering works.) In fact since the complaint was filed I have inserted my SIM into a couple of other devices, also not sold by AT&T but for which very similar devices were sold by AT&T and thus have the same IMEI prefix and tethering functions in all of them.

    2. The two devices in direct question are both made by the same manufacturer (BlackBerry)

    3. The two devices in direct question are both running the *same* operating system (Android 6.0.1) and *both* have the same feature set available on them, including tethering.

    4. The availability of tethering is controlled by the provisioning process which is under the complete control of AT&T, as they send down the feature flags that enable or disable said features (among others, including manual network select, the ability to lock out LTE, the ability to use VoLTE/IMS services and more) when the device's SIM is initialized. AT&T has always intentionally disabled a whole host of features on all handsets, including those they sell, with the most-important being the ability to choose which network technologies the handset will attempt to connect to (e.g. disabling LTE service, which can be very useful when in an area with poor LTE but good HSPA reception as it prevents "tower hopping" and thus extreme battery consumption.)

    5. This is not an instance in which a feature (tethering) appears to be available or in fact can be selected but doesn't work correctly. Rather, this is the case of a feature that the device has being intentionally disabled by AT&T at provisioning time; the feature and function is present in the menus but is "grayed out" and cannot be selected on the phone at all, despite being available on my account.

    6. While it is certainly understood (and reasonable) that there may be devices on which a feature will not operate because of the lack of ability or feature in the device itself, that is not true in this instance. In this specific instance the device is known to be capable of not only tethering but also manual network selection *and* IMS/VoLTE service, as all three function perfectly well when a T-Mobile SIM is inserted into the phone. These features "disappear" when an AT&T SIM provisions on the device -- they are being intentionally blocked by the carrier.

    7. As an Internet network designer and former CEO of an ISP with experience in the industry spanning more than 20 years I can confidently state that AT&T is *lying* about compatibility "concerns" in this case. How and to where data is routed from the terminal device (in this case the phone) once it reaches the phone has nothing to do whatsoever with the cellular network. It is a fact that cellular carriers have intentionally interfered with handset tethering capabilities, including but not limited to provisioning blocks and "deep packet inspection" for more than 10 years.

    The principle of network neutrality in the context of a capped data plan is quite simple: I have a quota of data available to me every month through the carrier; in this case 5Gb. How I expend that data quota should be at my discretion without intentional interference by the carrier(s) involved. This decision on my part is being intentionally interfered with by AT&T through their abuse of the provisioning process.

    Because AT&T sells devices and in fact earns a profit from said devices this implicates both current network neutrality rules and, in my opinion, 15 United States Code with regard to tied sales. Specifically, I do not want an AT&T-sold device for several reasons, including (1) their materially higher price for the same feature set (40% higher, in fact, for a comparable device) and (2) AT&T's universal inclusion of software on the devices they sell that both damage the user experience ("bloatware") and potentially invade privacy. On AT&T-sold devices said software is built into system software in such a fashion that it cannot be turned off or removed.

    For the above reasons I am not satisfied with the response tendered and request that the FCC continue to pursue this matter, leave the complaint open, and take the position that AT&T should be ordered on both net neutrality and tied sale rules to not intentionally block features, including but not limited to tethering, on devices they do not sell.

    Sincerely;
    Excellent response. Good job keeping the fire to them. I agree with all your points. I'm waiting on my response from Att.
    11-28-16 04:47 PM
  2. jlinc's Avatar
    Excellent response tickerguy Good job keeping the fire to them. I agree with all your points. I'm waiting on my response from Att.
    11-28-16 04:48 PM
  3. 00stryder's Avatar
    AT&T replied to the FCC and basically said "**** off." Here is my response back to the FCC, which will (for now anyway) keep the complaint open:

    Gentlemen;

    I confirm my conversation with AT&T but find their response unsatisfactory for the following reasons:

    1. The other device was not manufactured by AT&T *either* (the one on which the tethering works.) In fact since the complaint was filed I have inserted my SIM into a couple of other devices, also not sold by AT&T but for which very similar devices were sold by AT&T and thus have the same IMEI prefix and tethering functions in all of them.

    2. The two devices in direct question are both made by the same manufacturer (BlackBerry)

    3. The two devices in direct question are both running the *same* operating system (Android 6.0.1) and *both* have the same feature set available on them, including tethering.

    4. The availability of tethering is controlled by the provisioning process which is under the complete control of AT&T, as they send down the feature flags that enable or disable said features (among others, including manual network select, the ability to lock out LTE, the ability to use VoLTE/IMS services and more) when the device's SIM is initialized. AT&T has always intentionally disabled a whole host of features on all handsets, including those they sell, with the most-important being the ability to choose which network technologies the handset will attempt to connect to (e.g. disabling LTE service, which can be very useful when in an area with poor LTE but good HSPA reception as it prevents "tower hopping" and thus extreme battery consumption.)

    5. This is not an instance in which a feature (tethering) appears to be available or in fact can be selected but doesn't work correctly. Rather, this is the case of a feature that the device has being intentionally disabled by AT&T at provisioning time; the feature and function is present in the menus but is "grayed out" and cannot be selected on the phone at all, despite being available on my account.

    6. While it is certainly understood (and reasonable) that there may be devices on which a feature will not operate because of the lack of ability or feature in the device itself, that is not true in this instance. In this specific instance the device is known to be capable of not only tethering but also manual network selection *and* IMS/VoLTE service, as all three function perfectly well when a T-Mobile SIM is inserted into the phone. These features "disappear" when an AT&T SIM provisions on the device -- they are being intentionally blocked by the carrier.

    7. As an Internet network designer and former CEO of an ISP with experience in the industry spanning more than 20 years I can confidently state that AT&T is *lying* about compatibility "concerns" in this case. How and to where data is routed from the terminal device (in this case the phone) once it reaches the phone has nothing to do whatsoever with the cellular network. It is a fact that cellular carriers have intentionally interfered with handset tethering capabilities, including but not limited to provisioning blocks and "deep packet inspection" for more than 10 years.

    The principle of network neutrality in the context of a capped data plan is quite simple: I have a quota of data available to me every month through the carrier; in this case 5Gb. How I expend that data quota should be at my discretion without intentional interference by the carrier(s) involved. This decision on my part is being intentionally interfered with by AT&T through their abuse of the provisioning process.

    Because AT&T sells devices and in fact earns a profit from said devices this implicates both current network neutrality rules and, in my opinion, 15 United States Code with regard to tied sales. Specifically, I do not want an AT&T-sold device for several reasons, including (1) their materially higher price for the same feature set (40% higher, in fact, for a comparable device) and (2) AT&T's universal inclusion of software on the devices they sell that both damage the user experience ("bloatware") and potentially invade privacy. On AT&T-sold devices said software is built into system software in such a fashion that it cannot be turned off or removed.

    For the above reasons I am not satisfied with the response tendered and request that the FCC continue to pursue this matter, leave the complaint open, and take the position that AT&T should be ordered on both net neutrality and tied sale rules to not intentionally block features, including but not limited to tethering, on devices they do not sell.

    Sincerely;
    You forgot to add, *mic drop* at the end... great response!
    jamesharmeling likes this.
    11-28-16 07:47 PM
  4. ltreynolds's Avatar
    Thanks for providing this (and for clearly explaining the issue)...I've received my follow-up email from the FCC and included most [okay, all] of your comments in my response to them.
    11-29-16 03:22 PM
  5. tickerguy's Avatar
    I ported out today.... This wasn't why.
    Account stability risk drove it and I'm going to be where it would be impossible to deal with that if it went South on me for the next couple of weeks... so AT&T got the finger.
    stlabrat likes this.
    12-01-16 07:45 PM
  6. Centerman66's Avatar
    I ported out today.... This wasn't why.
    Account stability risk drove it and I'm going to be where it would be impossible to deal with that if it went South on me for the next couple of weeks... so AT&T got the finger.
    Sorry to see you go. The group will miss your advocacy.
    00stryder likes this.
    12-01-16 09:01 PM
  7. tickerguy's Avatar
    My account was through BlueGreen and their web site has "disappeared"; they're still reachable through their helpdesk links so they're not gone, but I do remember what happened to Harbor, and I'm going to be in and out of areas where I can deal with a "must port now or your number turns into a pumpkin" problem over the next couple of weeks. The risk was simply not acceptable, although I have no inside baseball telling me that they are about to imminently detonate.
    12-01-16 10:18 PM
  8. tickerguy's Avatar
    BTW everything -- including IMS -- does work on T-Mobile. VoLTE works even on Band 4 (!) here, which is what we have in this area for LTE service -- that's a recent change in this area as voice always used to fall back to HSPA+. Not any more -- the phone stays in LTE mode when a voice call is initiated.

    I would be quite cautious on this point when it comes to MVNOs. VoLTE requires cooperation via the APN of course, and all the MVNOs have their own APNs, which leads to the potential for trouble. That's yet another area for anti-competitive acts to rear their head, unfortunately.

    WiFi calling is a zero for me but that's because my firewall also does IPSEC and the ports conflict. While I can certainly change the IPSEC ports that I use on my gateway I'm not sure I want to for a whole host of reasons, not the least of which is that common client software available (including Strongswan on Android) has no clue how to change port numbers. That likely means moving the IPSEC gateway and it's not worth it to me.

    AT&T's executives should find themselves on the wrong end of a Sherman Act indictment, IMHO. The issue with their company and behavior is not limited to Hotspot; it also extends to VoLTE and similar features on handsets they do not sell.
    stlabrat and 00stryder like this.
    12-02-16 07:02 AM
  9. mryan55's Avatar
    I am now five weeks on T-Mobile and no issues at all. I never had my DTEK60 on AT&T at any point, but as a long time T-Mobile detractor I am surprised how well it all works.

    I have spent a ton of time on Hotspot this month so I am happy I went with T-Mobile, although it wasn't a defining reason. WiFi works fine as I mentioned last month, but handoffs aren't completely seamless so for the last week I have used cellular only for calling.

    Only quirky thing 5 weeks in is that my caller ID still just shows up as 'Cell Phone MI' on most landlines. Not a big issue, and it seems correct in the CNAM databases that one can check on their own, so must be up to the landline carriers to update at this point.
    stlabrat likes this.
    12-02-16 07:07 PM
  10. tickerguy's Avatar
    Yeah I'm only ~24 hours into T-Mobile on this thing but thus far... zero issues. We'll see if I can live with the coverage -- that has always been their issue, but they have improved over the last few years, so it might be ok now....
    12-03-16 08:22 AM
  11. mryan55's Avatar
    Unless they pull Band 12 and VoLTE support everything is fine in my neck of the woods. If they do pull that I would still be OK most, but not all of the time.
    12-03-16 12:52 PM
  12. anon(757282)'s Avatar
    AT&T's arrogance is costing them customers and benefiting T-Mobile. Good! I've been on T-Mobile now for over a month and traveling and mobile hotspot works fine.

    Glad I switched and glad you guys are finding that it works for you.
    12-04-16 10:12 PM
  13. crackberry_geek's Avatar
    AT&T's arrogance is costing them customers and benefiting T-Mobile. Good! I've been on T-Mobile now for over a month and traveling and mobile hotspot works fine.

    Glad I switched and glad you guys are finding that it works for you.
    It is the arrogance of johnny chen that explains why if won't work on AT&T.

    The only reason it fully works on Tmo is because Tmo offers the Alcatel Idol 4s... pure and simple...
    12-05-16 01:32 AM
  14. 00stryder's Avatar
    It is the arrogance of johnny chen that explains why if won't work on AT&T.

    The only reason it fully works on Tmo is because Tmo offers the Alcatel Idol 4s... pure and simple...
    I'm sorry... how are you pinning this one on BlackBerry? I've read your complaints before but this is a big stretch. If it were unique to the DTEK60 or BlackBerry devices in general then yeah, but whether or not BlackBerry "waited" for AT&T to put in the proper provisions for a device they don't sell doesn't explain why other Android devices are in the same boat.
    12-05-16 08:54 AM
  15. deebo550's Avatar
    I can happily confirm that Build AAI039 fixes the Tethering & Mobile Hotspot setting from being grayed out!!
    12-05-16 03:24 PM
  16. Centerman66's Avatar
    I can happily confirm that Build AAI039 fixes the Tethering & Mobile Hotspot setting from being grayed out!!
    Woo hoo!!!
    12-05-16 03:28 PM
  17. anon(757282)'s Avatar
    D@mn! What am I going to complain about now!

    LOL, very good news for you folks still on AT&T. I like my new unlimited data on T-Mobile so will stay here.

    The squeaky wheel rolls again!!!!
    12-05-16 03:39 PM
  18. angel220's Avatar
    The upgrade definitely fixed the mobile hotspot issue. Finally!
    00stryder likes this.
    12-05-16 05:01 PM
  19. Dj Teknision's Avatar
    The upgrade definitely fixed the mobile hotspot issue. Finally!
    I also received the Beta update for AA1039. It also fixed my Hotspot issue!!
    12-05-16 05:22 PM
  20. Dj Teknision's Avatar
    12-05-16 05:39 PM
  21. samberry109's Avatar
    All good here as well, thanks for the update BlackBerry!!!
    12-05-16 07:21 PM
  22. AnimalPak200's Avatar
    Nice... time to buy myself a new phone.

    Posted via CB10
    12-05-16 08:07 PM
  23. ltreynolds's Avatar
    Same here...installed update and Hotspot is working!
    12-05-16 09:08 PM
  24. 00stryder's Avatar
    Hotspot working for me too! Now my mobile device experience is complete.

    Would it be too much to ask Santa for WiFi calling? 😉
    12-05-16 09:47 PM
  25. Centerman66's Avatar
    Hotspot working for me too! Now my mobile device experience is complete.

    Would it be too much to ask Santa for WiFi calling? 😉
    Now you are pushing it. Ha ha. Damn WiFi calling. Ha ha. Just happy hot spot works. WiFi calling I want. But hot spot I need.
    00stryder likes this.
    12-05-16 09:58 PM
269 ... 891011

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