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UPDATE Three 3 UK Clamps Down on P2P Mobile Broadband Traffic

Posted: 13th Nov, 2009 By: MarkJ
three 3 logoMobile operator Three (3) UK is gearing up to introduce a new form of traffic shaping to its mobile data / Mobile Broadband services from Monday of next week. The system will reportedly target file sharing P2P users on its service to help reduce strain on its network.

A Spokesperson for Three (3) told The Register:

"In order to improve the service for the majority of our customers, we are actively managing the amount of bandwidth made available for peer-to-peer file sharing and limiting the number of streaming video sessions to one at a time per user at peak times."

It's understood that Three (3) has since decided to leave streaming video sessions unhindered and instead focus upon P2P. This is unsurprising because all of the UK's mobile operators are struggling with capacity issues and shaping is typically preferable to raising prices.

It sadly makes sense to clamp down on P2P traffic because HSPA based Mobile Broadband is simply not equipped to handle it. Indeed we fully expect other operators to follow suit and some are likely to be even more aggressive. Watch this space.

UPDATE 14th November 2009

Small addition, the P2P filtering will only take place during busy peak periods (6pm and midnight). It is not known how aggressive the P2P slowdown will be. Presently Three (3) is still the only UK operator to do this and its four main rivals are choosing to remain mute on whether or not they will follow.
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