T-Mobile clarifies mobile phone data cap

Samsung Galaxy and iPhone
Image caption Networks are changing focus from voice to data

T-Mobile has clarified its policy on mobile data use after anger from its customers.

The company initially said that it would slash the amount of data all of its customers could use to 500 MB.

For Android handset owners, previously allocated 3GB per month, the drop would have been more than 80%.

But the company has now said that the changes would be introduced from 1 February, "to new and upgrading customers only".

"There will be no change to the data packages for existing customers for the duration of their contract and we apologise for any confusion caused," said Lysa Hard, VP for T-Mobile UK.

On 10 January, the firm said that it would reduce the monthly allowance for most people from 1GB (gigabyte) to 500 MB (megabytes).

The company said the move was necessary to provide "a better experience for all our customers who use internet on their phone".

But many were not happy.

"Given that data allowance was a driving force in choosing T-Mobile over competitors last year, this is a huge blow," disgruntled T-Mobile customer Steve Anderson told the BBC after the policy was announced.

The caps followed similar moves by mobile operators including Vodafone and O2 in the summer of 2010.

Having initially followed suit, Three decided to scrap its data caps completely in December 2010.

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