AT&T “systematically” overcharged iPad and iPhone users for data use and sometimes inflated bills by as much as 300 percent, a new class-action suit alleges. The suit, first reported on MSNBC
, “systemically overstated the data usage by 7-14 percent and sometimes up to 300 percent.”
A lawyer in the case told MSNC that the carrier was using methods comparable to “a rigged gas pump,” where you pay for a gallon of gas but get only nine-tenths of the amount.
In many cases, the lawyers said, customers wouldn’t even notice an extra $10-15 on their monthly statement — but it would add up to millions for the carrier.
The lawyers said they conducted an extensive investigation that ended up costing $80,000.
In one test, they said, they bought a new iPhone and disabled every feature that could use 3G data, even turning off the 3G itself. Nevertheless, they said, when they got the bill, it listed 35 data transactions for the month.
The lawyers also said they examined bills in which every single data use charge had been jacked up.
One family told MSNBC that its members were shocked to find they were incurring data use charges in the middle of the night – when they were fast asleep.
AT&T called the allegations “without merit” and said consumers did not understand the billing methods.
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