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Apple Is Blocking an App That Detects Net Neutrality Violations From the App Store

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posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 11:22 AM
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It seems we may have our first evidence of throttling after the repeal of net neutrality. If so, I think it plays against the narrative sold that competition would prevent such an occurrence.

But, let's be honest, competition doesn't really exist. Many areas of the country only have one broadband provider, and around two solid wireless carriers.


The FCC has suggested that consumer outrage will prevent companies from violating net neutrality, but it if you’re not a network engineer, it can be hard to know if net neutrality is being violated at all. David Coffnes, a researcher at Northeastern University, set out to change that. He created an app to detect net neutrality violations, but Apple has banned it from the App Store, preventing consumers from accessing the information they need to at least know when they’re getting screwed over.



Using Apple’s beta testing platform called TestFlight, I tested the app, called Wehe. It’s straightforward. You open the app, agree to a consent form (he is using the data in his research), and click “run test.” The app is designed to test download speeds from seven apps: YouTube, Amazon, NBCSports, Netflix, Skype, Spotify, and Vimeo. According to the app, my Verizon LTE service streamed YouTube to my iPhone at 6 Mbps, Amazon Prime video at 8 Mbps, and Netflix at 4 Mbps. It downloaded other data at speeds of up to 25 Mbps.



“Differentiation means in this case throttling by Verizon,” Choffnes told me. This would, in theory, be the sort of thing people would want to know—with this knowledge, they could choose to switch to another carrier, or could lodge a complaint against with the Federal Trade Commission.

Motherboard-Vice

So here we have what looks like throttling happening with a wireless carrier. Should they approach the third party subscription services and offer no throttle for money, I'm sure it will be passed to consumers.




posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 11:54 AM
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Well, Verizon is one of the big players that opposed neutrality, and is on the record stating that the only thing stopping them from throttling were the neutrality rules.

That being said, it doesn't surprise me that Apple is blocking things already.... They love more than anything to censor apps they don't like, for whatever reason. (another big reason I don't buy their products)



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 12:10 PM
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a reply to: dothedew

Its ironic they're the first ones to get caught considering their former lawyer is the one who repealed net neutrality.... Or is it?



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 12:43 PM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker

Ha, I bet that little weasel is sitting in a chair, having "O" after "O" just reading this report......

Hell, Verizon probably called him up and personally thanked him after the FCC vote.

This is only the beginning, though.... It hasn't even been 30 days, and ISP's are already throttling and censoring information. I want to know what the Republican and Libertarian crowds are going to say.... They were the biggest ones swearing up and down that this was "all in our conspiracy minded heads", while stroking their "competition, free market" Hard-ons.

I love it when loud, obnoxious, condescending people are proven wrong..... Brings a little, joyous rainbow to my day



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 12:44 PM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker

Apple, who keeps 94% of their cash overseas to avoid paying taxes, and who needs nets under their slave-labor factories to minimize suicides of their workers, just announced they will hire 20,000 new workers in the US and "inject $350 billion into the US economy". Wow! I'm so not impressed at all. Apple is like Skynet only they try to be "hip" and trendy at the same time whereas Skynet didn't need to do that.

I'm not surprised by this news at all.



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 03:45 PM
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So a company that was pro-NN goes back on that, when they were free do conduct business as if it hadn't been repealed?

Color me surprised. Now I have to wonder about the other pro-NN companies, and why they were for it.

*thinking emoji*



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 04:01 PM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker

Exactly, in the end despite the support of the repeal by the masses the truth of the matter shines through.



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 04:18 PM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker


I think the main reason to ban it is its misleading. And its going make people think something is going on when it isn't. With the internet you don't throttle anything back. ISPs can make thing faster by caching on there server. But they belittle control over the speed they receive content. That is determined by the content provider. As a content provider you must have a large enoughbandwidth to meet demand. And the further the content provider is from you the slower it transfers data. More nodes the longer the transfer time. ISPs can do things to speed up transfers but there is no advantage to slowing them down. And they cant slow it down they will receive it at the speed the server can handle send data. It will show you which content providers spend more money on there servers however.
edit on 1/18/18 by dragonridr because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 05:06 PM
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a reply to: dragonridr

I don't want to take away from the eloquence of your response, especially considering it may be unpopular on this topic.

That said I'd like to stress my end statement in the OP is "it looks like".

I know this is a complicated topic, and I am no expert. I think it's something to keep an eye on but I'm by no means trying to say this is damning evidence.

But I would like to say, these are shady companies who love to make local monopolies and charge higher amounts of money without improving networks in many places (mainly ISPs, wireless carriers are a bit better).

Let's not forget when American tax payers footed hundreds of billions (yes with a b) to help speed up fiber optic decelopment. Well I think most of us got stiffed.



posted on Jan, 18 2018 @ 05:36 PM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker

We did get stiffed the amount we paid for it it should be free for 30 years



posted on Jan, 19 2018 @ 03:18 AM
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a reply to: CriticalStinker

sorry - but there are several reasons why that occured that are NOT " verzion throttling "



posted on Jan, 22 2018 @ 09:53 PM
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This is why you don't share information with people. They dont understand it.



posted on Jan, 23 2018 @ 12:22 PM
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The real reason they want this is the infrostructor is falling apart .
Outages getting more often bad connections apps that suck the life out of it .
equipment that is 30 years old in some places they keep slapping more bandages on it but take a look at the transformers on the poles and see take a look at cable so old it is craking take a look at roads and bridges falling apart .

Your worried about them ? we louse cable - internet on averge twice a month no storms no lines down just equmint failing and I have seen it corrosion bad connections green crap shorting it out guy comes along does some cleaning and gets it working only to have it fail in two weeks .


This is a fair sized towns City's are in much much worse shape they are tring to run on wiring 100 years old in some places along with 150 year old pipes .

Enjoy it wile it last and except your connections to degrade no throttling needed .



posted on Jan, 23 2018 @ 12:28 PM
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Update: After this article was published, Apple told Dave Choffnes that his iPhone app, designed to detect net neutrality violations, will be allowed in the iTunes App Store. According to Choffnes, Apple contacted him and explained that the company has to deal with many apps that don't do the things they claim to do. Apple asked Choffnes to provide a technical description of how his app is able to detect if wireless telecom providers throttle certain types of data, and 18 hours after he did, the app was approved


As an app developer, makes sense.



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