Carriers always have a say in what can and can’t be in a phone on their network, and with the Galaxy S5, the carriers have a lot of features to choose from. Many are very useful and many aren’t. One that many found very useful was the addition of what Samsung calls the “Download Booster”. What is a download booster though? What does it do?
This feature is in reality quite simple. When downloading a file of 30MB or more while connected to WiFi the download booster allows users to use their mobile data to increase the speed of the download. While that does cause users to use up more of their data plans, it does work well in decreasing the time it takes to download large files, but it does speed up something else at the same time. The amount of time it takes you to go over your data plan. That usually means more money for the carrier in overage charges, so why would AT&T want to disable it?
There are a couple different reasons why the carrier might not want it’s users using that feature. It could be that the feature encourages downloading on WiFi rather than typically faster 4G LTE networks which results in less data used for AT&T. On the other hand however, they could be disabling it to protect their network. It’s becoming more and more obvious that carriers want us to use WiFi when possible since many phones now have a notification when WiFi is available. This allows them to save money on bandwidth which translate to more money in their pockets.
What do you think about this? Do you care that AT&T is restricting the S5’s features like this? Also keep in mind that other carriers are not doing this, as far as we know anyway. Sprint and Verizon haven’t said much about it, but T-Mobile is obviously supportive of it as they show it in their ads for the phone regularly.