what is data deprioritization heres why your data speeds are slowed

What Is Data Deprioritization? Here’s Why Your Data Speeds Are Slowed!

You were browsing the internet on your phone in a crowded place when, all of a sudden, the speeds slowed way down. This is known as “data deprioritization” and it can be a real surprise if you didn’t know it was coming. In this article, I’ll explain what data deprioritization is and how you can avoid it!

What Is Data Deprioritization?

Data deprioritization is when your carrier slows down your data during period of heavy network congestion. Network congestion occurs when lots of users are trying to connect to your carrier’s network at the same time.

Data deprioritization generally occurs when you exceed your high-speed data cap on an unlimited plan that doesn’t charge overages. Many unlimited data plans include 22 – 23 GB of high-speed data. Once you've hit that cap, your carrier may deprioritize your data speeds during times of network congestion, or throttle your speeds entirely.

However, carriers are now beginning to introduce cell phone plans with increased high-speed data caps. For example, Verizon's Get More Unlimited Plan doesn't throttle data speeds until you've used 75 GB.

Make sure to check the fine print of your cell phone plan to see if your data might be deprioritized!

How Data Deprioritization Works

Let's say you're at Yankee Stadium with tens of thousands of other people. In between innings, you and everyone else goes to check the score of the Red Sox game using cellular data.

In this situation, your data may be deprioritized because so many others near you are also trying to connect to your carrier's wireless network at the same time!

Is Data Deprioritization Different From Data Throttling?

Data throttling typically occurs when you meet or exceed your monthly data cap. Rather than charging overages, your carrier lets you continue using cellular data at slower speeds for free. Check out our other article to learn more about data throttling!

How Can I Avoid Data Deprioritization?

If you often exceed your high-speed data limit and find your speeds deprioritized, you may want to consider switching to the Verizon Get More Unlimited Plan. This plan includes more prioritized high-speed data than most other unlimited plans.

You can also avoid data deprioritization by using less cellular data every month. Check out our article to learn about the biggest data hogs on your iPhone.

Getting Your Priorities Straight!

I hope this article helped you better understand data deprioritization and how you can avoid it. If you have any other questions, leave a comment down below!

Thanks for reading,
David L.


David Lynch

David Lynch is an expert on cell phones, cell phone plans, and other tech. After using a flip phone into his early 20s, he learned the ropes about iPhones and Androids from a former Apple employee. Today, his articles and videos are read and viewed by millions, and he has been cited by major publications including Reader's Digest, Wired, CMSWire, Consumers Advocate, and more.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Stay up to date on the latest phones, plans, and deals with our once-a-week digest.