Verizon to put some limits on unlimited data

Verizon to crack down on heaviest users of unlimited data
By Joseph Keller on 25 Jul 2014 02:50 pm EDT
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If you've managed to stay on an unlimited data plan on Verizon, you might soon notice that your speeds beginning to slow down if you're using a lot of data. A limited set of customers will fall under the umbrella of Verizon's so-called "Network Optimization" policy, which Verizon says is not throttling. The shift impacts customers in a very specific set of circumstances, according to Verizon:

Starting in October 2014, Verizon Wireless will extend its network optimization policy to the data users who: fall within the top 5 percent of data users on our network, have fulfilled their minimum contractual commitment, and are on unlimited plans using a 4G LTE device. They may experience slower data speeds when using certain high bandwidth applications, such as streaming high-definition video or during real-time, online gaming, and only when connecting to a cell site when it is experiencing heavy demand.

Are you affected by Verizon's policy shift? Let us know below in the comments.

Source: Verizon

Reader comments

Verizon to put some limits on unlimited data

142 Comments

However they justify it, there's never been such a thing as "unlimited data", anywhere. It's a marketing gimmick. If you send/receive terabytes upon terabytes of data over your home Internet connection, your ISP *will* take notice and you'll be asked questions at a minimum - if not throttled or have your service cut off.

Glad that my home usage of several hundred gigabytes isn't touched whatsoever. As for my mobile, not a Verizon customer. Happy with my Sprint LTE.

Posted via CB App from my Galaxy S4 Mini with an LED CrackLight ;-)

If you have Verizon FiOS, they will get to your ToS soon!
If you have AT&T U-Verse, you've broken their ToS and could face extra charges or be subject to service termination
If you have TWC RoadRunner or MAXX, after the Comcast-TWC merger is completed (hope it won't) and have fully rebranded to Comcast Xfinity, you will be subject to the Comcast ToS (if you don't opt out in time, DO NOT CHANGE PLANS OR YOU'RE DEEMED INELIGIBLE FOR OPT OUT), and will also either get charged extra or get disconnected.
If you have Google Fiber, AT&T U-Verse with Gigapower, or a local provider, good for you. Haha

Posted from my BlackBerry Q10 on AT&T

Fucking garbage is all Verizon is. This is the ONLY reason I kept them is because I have 2 lines with unlimited data!

There will be absolutely nooooooo reason to stay with them, I am switching to AT&T. That way I can use unlocked devices and buy them straight from BlackBerry.

Screw Verizons greedy over priced bs, I will never use them again.

Posted by Antoniius via my sexy Gold and White Q10.

"... only when connecting to a cell site when it is experiencing heavy demand... "

So under normal circumstances you wouldn't be affected, I believe. Keep us updated.

My Optus was very slow two days ago, unusable and dropping out. Then I did some heavy downloads yesterday (Windows 7 isos), and it was as fast as my Telstra. Looks like they've upgraded it. I only got like 600KB/sec on H+, now it's more like 2.2MB/sec!

Hooray! I am not planning to go 4G now... I'm in a regional city and we won't be seeing 4G on Optus here for a while.
The grandfathered unlimited H+ is now good enough, and real unlimited. The same plan on 4G would have a 1GB/day limit enforced.... I'd rather have MOAR data than more speed...

Pasted via CB chen

Thus begins the ways of pressuring people off their unlimited plans. I still have one, but I really don't use more than 1.5 - 2 GB per month, and most of that is either BBM video or streaming Nobex. I'm sure there are some people tied to YouTube or other video services, but I'm really not one of them.

So you're not downloading Windows ISOs from Digital River or Linux distros via your phone? C'mon... ;-)

I smoke through a gig in less than an hour...

Pasted via CB chen

I just switched from sprint and I've got a 2 gb plan. I'd rather have reliable service that isn't unlimited vs having unlimited unreliable service. The difference is night and day. I'm glad to be on Verizon now.

Posted via CB10

That's weird. It must be where you live because I miss Sprint! I can't ever use my phone at home. With sprint I had 3G at home. The pricing for the more everything plan vs sprints unlimited data plans are very comparable anyhow...

Posted via CB10

I'm in Charlotte NC. I sometimes got 4g coverage but it was mostly 3g / 1X. Now it's 4g everywhere I've been since the switch. Even in the house. With sprint that never happened and I had a Q10.

Posted via CB10

I left Sprint for Verizon and I haven't looked back. My brother and I share 4GB of data a month and we have only gotten close to the limit once. Plus with VZW I have service at my work, which I never had with Sprint. I would miss important calls and my battery would die within 2 hours from a full charge looking for signal. Having had T-Mobile and Sprint Verizon is a God send, I wouldn't go back now.

Z10

Great, normally I use about 20- 40 Gb per month on the grandfathered plan I have. Sucks that theyll be slowing me down.

That's a pretty ridiculous amount of data usage. They definitely should throttle your account. People who use more reasonable amounts of data shouldn't have to subsidize whatever you are streaming. Also, I wouldn't want to have all that data transmission activity on a mobile device on my body.

Nope. I consume 15GB every 4-8 days. I'm on prepaid and have to re-subscribe once I've used up all that data. Youtube, Movie download, porn stuffs, etc.

Posted via CB10

Ever heard of wifi? Seriously, people like me who use 2-4GB per month are subsidizing heavier users, not to mention the network congestion. Throttle away, Verizon!

No you aren't. You're paying for verizon's greed. Don't kid yourself here. Did you see Verizon's profits last quarter? And they had the nerve to tell L3 they want more money from them to open up ports for netflix streaming for all their fios customers when it not L3's problem. It's Verizon who is keeping everything congested. L3 even.said they would put more cards in to increase Verizon's capacity and Verizon said no. Greedy mofo's.

This Verizon customers you all should complain about this shit. No matter how much data you use. #SayNoToLimits #Verizon

Posted via z30 STA100-5 the only high end business device on the market

I disagree , although that is a lot of data I don't think anyone should call him on it. It's an unlimited plan.

I use my phone hotspot for Internet at my cottage, with 2 kids (Netflix) I use about 12gb a month and that's with limits on how much they can use the Internet. I wish I had an unlimited plan option I pay 65$ x2 phones 2gb each sharable plus 100$ for 8gb extra per month

Posted via CB10

I'm on a grandfathered plan with Bell, also unlimited, and I too use about 20GB per month. I simply don't turn on WiFi for anything. It's not that hard to use up 20GB with today's content. Lots of steaming, lots of emailing, lots of browsing. I hardly turn on my computer do these days.

Posted via CrackBerry App

Im with bell too! I love my unlimited! Had it for like 6 years and its great. And all the haters are just jelly that we dont have to ever use wifi and that we can use our data anytime, anywhere without a single limit! Streaming hd movies on the skytrain is a blast!! Yeah I dont feel bad for all the losers with their data caps at all. Thats why I got my plan when I did. You gotta be an idiot to not go unlimited. And im only paying 70 a month after tax!

Posted via R115-Aramis.

I don't know if you qualify as top 5% to get "throttled", regardless, I don't see the issue. If there is someone taking up an unfair amount of bandwidth and limiting my minimal usage, I think it's justified. The same way I get pissy when there are no parking spots left and I see some asshat straddling the line taking up 2.

The Zombie Apocalypse is upon us. Run while you still can

But did they make that clear when you got it? Because any vagueness in a contract benefits the party that didn't draft it...or it should. Big Money changes things.

If by make it clear, you mean was it in tiny print of the contract then yes, it's always been there. And this is not new for Verizon.

If it's grandfathered, doesn't that mean it's out of contract? You can leave it if you want - they could always cancel it or move you to something else.

Posted via CB10

Exactly. Cut back on watching movies instead of working. I suspect that we will see a direct correlation between lower speeds and increased productivity

Posted via CB10

Any idea what the "top 5% of users" consume? If they continually throttle them down, thus lowering the "top 5%" at each iteration, does that mean they'll eventually be throttling down those they use 1-2GB?

Those types of announcements should be illegal by the FCC, as they provide no guidelines to the subscribers and broadly (but un-determinably) affect a service previously agreed upon by way of a mutual contract.

Posted via CB10

So only high-rate data consuming apps would be throttled? How can they justify that when Net Neutrality should still count?

IF someone uses up more data than 'reasonable' I would expect them to throttle the speed down, but not single out specific types of data...

Unlimited data plans have always worked like that here, you get X GB/mo at full speed, anything over that gets a slower connection. But you still do not pay extra (unless you want to).

BlackBerry 10 signed.

It's Verizon we're talking about. The company that's been caught throttling Netflix despite all their "no we don'ts." Do you think they really care about net neutrality?

Was not aware of those details, but I hope that there are some consumer protection programs that pick up on such activities and file appropriate complaints.

I am thinking of contacting a local one, I am quite curious to see if providers here do the same without telling us.

BlackBerry 10 signed.

I can't find the detail that makes this news. They've been doing this for years. And they've always used "optimization" instead of "throttling down", but their definition always translated to throttling. Maybe the difference is that they will stick to the stated top 5% data users. In the past there was a specific high speed data limit, after which you were "optimized". I believe it was 3 or 4 gigs. I was given the specific limit several times by the lower tier reps, when I called to complain about my speeds. The upper level reps sometimes denied it, but the change back to normal speeds was so obvious at the start of each cycle. I was never close to the top 5%.

I'm still on unlimited on one of my lines. When traveling I'll use 6-8gb, but other than that I'm usually right around 2. Regardless, it's nice to have the unlimited plan when needed. I sure hope I won't get throttled when I'm in the middle of nowhere trying to get my damn map to work

Posted via CB10

I have held on to my Verizon account & paid $600 for my Z10. I really don't use all that much data as I use wifi a lot. I have kept it mainly because tech and my data use changes so fast I have wondered if I might have greater needs in the future. I suspect I will be doing some major cord cutting pretty soon. Maybe I will get too tempted by the Passport & throw it all away on an upgrade.

Posted via CB from "Z" best

LOL... I have "unlimited data" in T-Mobile, Germany... I have 3GB up to LTE then it drops down to EDGE... Unless I send an sms to reactivate the speed... works for me, have to reactivate around the 21-22nd of the months, If I watched you tube or recieved What'sApp/BM Videos on the go... this costs "only" 5 euros!

BlackBerry*Q10, T-Mobile Germany - SQN100-3, Running OS 10.2.1.2941

I'm with Simyo in germany (Telefonica /Eplus) and pay 14.90 for 3GB LTE Speed and can add more GB for 3.00€

RedBerry Z10 #00167 10.2.1.3247

For once TMO is not in the news. Earlier is this year TMO gave users with 2.5gb their Unlimited Plan an extra 500mb bring the data to 3gb a month after which your data is slowed to a painful crawl.
With my 9900 I got near 2gigs, on my Q10 I'm over every month, and that's using wifi the moment I get to work and home.

Posted via CB10

My Verizon contract originally included 500 MB of data/month and I never even approached that because most of my use is over wifi. Then they doubled my monthly data to 1 GB (made a big whoop-de-doo deal of this too) but I still rarely use more than 100 MB. Meanwhile the "new" 500 MB plan costs less now than it did when I signed up for it a year ago. I'd much prefer if they'd simply lowered my monthly rate instead of doubling my data allotment. (As if they'd ever do that!)

Posted with my Q10, SQN100-2, 10.2.1.3253/3182 Radio

It looks like a lot of verizon employees are posting here.

If verizon can't handle the unlimited users, they shouldn't have contracted to supply unlimited data.

If throttling and/or caps are in their contracts, then by all means do it. But if it isn't in the contracts, they (verizon) should STFU and and do their job.

Verizon posted earnings of $1.01 per share, or $4.34 billion in profit last quarter...I don't think anyone without an unlimited plan is subsidizing those that have an unlimited plan. It's part of the deal knowing that soon voice will be data as well and will pull from the bucket of data you have available. I've seen throttling at this point for months...usually youtube in a densely populated area...

Hmmm what does this tell you about "it's not Verizons fault your Netflix is slow"

Posted via CB10

At&t has been doing this for awhile. Annoying because service slows to a crawl pretty much if u go over cap. First learned that when I used to tether my BlackBerry to my laptop

Posted via CB10

Then it's not unlimited now is it? Hey everybody we have limited unlimited Internet with limits that are unlimited.

Posted via CB10

"Instead of making our network so robust clients would not have to worry about any of our unlimited limitations, we made a decision to rape them for their 'loyalty' over a period of years in order to horde as much world changing money for ours and our psychopathic investors pockets as possible. Why? Because we can and we're greedy douche bags."

Posted via CB10

That's absurd! How do you limit unlimited? I believe that would be considered an oxymoron, but then again, it is Verizon.

Posted via CB10

I pay 83 for my unlimited. Bought. Z10 outright to not change plan. I use probably 8-10 gb a month. Will not want to pay more or get less. It's already overpriced. And that's with my corp discount of 19%. I will be forced to change anyway. I'm getting passport and handing my son the z10 when it's launched. Assuming big red will continue to support my BlackBerry habits.

Posted via CB10

I'm just starting out with the 1GB plan thru t&at. If i'm gonna go nuts on bandwidth i'll do it on my home computer and iPad!

‎Q10 Rules!

Wow what the heck are you guys doing to consume 15-40gb a month on a cell phone?

Do you not have home computers and a internet connection in the house?

Downloading torrents on your phones perhaps.

I've gone unplugged five or six years ago.

No cable TV, no landline. Mobile Broadband and phone only. I moved house/unit a couple of times in town, so the ADSL installation/connection fees didn't apply, which is great.

Pasted via CB chen

In the uk here, and its easy to get through 20gb when streaming films... esp when I can only get 1mb download speed on my broadband but 40-60mb on my z10.

Posted via CB10

I only use about 3 gigs a month so I got rid of my unlimited. I know people that connect their hot spot to Xbox and play online. That's simply network abuse

"Once You Go Black You Never Go Back"

those S.O.B's, I guess if they can't get us to pay for overage, they'll just slow us down. Greed at its best.

"Data" the new Greed

I use between 14 n 25 gb a month... they're going to have to kill me to get me off unlimited !

Posted via CB10

I have a grandfathered unlimited plan. I always hook to wifi when I'm home and never go above 2 gigs of data a month. I could go to a regular plan, but, it's nice knowing that if I need the extra data (which sometimes I do), I have it. As soon as the carriers start mass rolling out of VOIP service, your data will rise. Unless you are still using an archaic 1x device lol. Now it's just waiting for the other shoe to drop. I'm guaranteeing there will be a class action lawsuit once this takes effect. Time to dredge up the old contract papers.

Rocking a Z30 on Verizon

Why? It must be different in Australia... once the contract term is up, it's fair game - anything can change (and you can obviously leave if you don't like the change).

Posted via CB10

This is complete bull*hit!!!!

I drive for a living and I use up at least 10gb each month using BeMaps Pro.
On the bright side I don't game much on my Q10 or watch many videos. They didn't mention music streaming so that shouldn't be an issue right?

I may have to consider going to AT&T in the near future!

 BlackBerry Q10  Keep The Faith 

Verizon posts record profit = Verizon does not invest adequately in infrastructure.

High GB per month DOES NOT EQUAL bandwidth stress. Totally different. This is another scam by carriers, like high cost of text service. F Them. Throttle T H I S. \rant.

Posted on my Z30. BlackSheep!

Didn't you negotiate or weren't you (made) aware this was gonna happen? Sure, up to you where your priorities lie. :-)

Pasted via CB chen

Also unlimited data. On average used about 2-3 gig per month until I got an email saying I was being optimized. I called them about it and said I was the top 5% usage which didn't make sense until it came up that I was temporarily in a small town instead of Los Angeles. I asked them to fix it but they said they will get back on me about it which they haven't.

Posted via CB10

I have "unlimited " data with AT&T. Pretty sure they throttle my LTE speeds. I'm not surprised though, the yseem to throttle their DSL too. Google fiber can't get to my neighborhood soon enough

I am packing ZeeTen goodness...

We have seven lines and the unlimited data. If we get throttled, we will go somewhere cheaper. We have been buying our phones outright to keep the plan. They ARE making money off us.

Also be aware next time you pay for your full price phone. When I was getting a new phone I asked and confirm with both the people at apple and the verizon phone rep that I wasn't changing my unlimited plan. And guess what happen when I got my next phone bill. Yep they changed it. I got mad and called them on it. They changed it back but now I heard that ability to fix this has been removed from regular phone rep to a "special" task group which involves a long process to fight for your plan.

Posted via CB10

Don't talk to minions...

Whatever they say when signing, get it in writing or assume it's never been said. :-)

Pasted via CB chen

Isn't this the same thing they did with AT&T? I have unlimited but it slows after 5G. I've only used 5G one time so doesn't affect me.

Posted via CB10

While I feel bad for everyone affected did you really think it would last forever?? I mean come on there was no way they were going to just keep letting people use the network to bypass there home first business and watch what some are saying is an a$$ load of content.
I know they're expensive but we all have that little addendum in our agreements with carriers that they can alter their pricing and features at any time.

I'm in t-mobile and I believe that the while unlimited streaming music thing is designed to get people hooked on the service and in a year or two pull back and when everyone e can't do without they'll gladly pony up more cash.
We're all screwed period

"I love when people boast about their phones...like its a pissing contest"

Just wanted to make it clear, "high data usage " does impact "bandwidth ". I work in the communications sector. If a cell tower can only support say 800 gigs and you have hundreds of phones hitting that tower at the same time, it's a "shared " bandwidth. Bandwidth is the AMOUNT of data that that tower, fiber, electronic equipment can handle at that given time frame. So, yeah, if you come off of one tower using a lot of "data" or "bandwidth ", it does impact the people around you hitting the same tower. Do I think it's right by "optimizing " people's data? Yes and no. If you have an unlimited data plan, you will still get your data, albeit slower. Do I think it's right? No. You have your plan and I think you should have the access to what you signed up for. But if you are hogging up the "bandwidth " of that tower, you DO screw with other people's access to that same network. The only solution is for the provider to "upgrade " the network. I.E., new technology, better cards, improved fiber optics, newer protocols (1x, 3g,4g). It costs money to do ANY upgrades on ANY network. Individual cards in a cloud based system can cost upward of $60,000.00, yeah, 60 grand for one card. Think 10 to 15 cards per unit. Sorry this is so long. I'm thinking if you're doing more than 20 gigs a month, it's time to get your own T3 to your home. I'm all for unlimited (as I have one myself ), but stop abusing the system. Almost seems like some people are using their plans as servers.

Rocking a Z30 on Verizon

This is stupid! Anything to justify cheating paying customers...my unlimited data was why I stayed so far but if I'm going to get crappy service because I have unlimited data the I'm definitely switching service. I've had it with Verizon.

Posted via CB10

I'm on an unlimited plan using 5-6 gb a month. I just don't use Wi-Fi and with the BB 10 browser I'm using the Internet more. A little disappointed in big red. 4 billion doesn't buy you what it used to.

Posted via CB10

Re-read the criteria. *If* you're in the top five percentile, *if* you're off - contract, and if load factors are high, then you might see a reduction. Seems to me that the solution here is to stay on - contract.

And AT&T does the same thing.

Posted via CB10

I have three phones on unlimited two that are 4G. 1 I use as a hot spot when needed, but I don't think I've ever done more then 10gb. I love Verizon. In our area everyone else sucks.

Posted via CB10

This is B.S. Clearly, Verizon DROPPED the ball on this when they probably did not listen to the guy/gal that said that this day would come when bandwidth will be necessary to handle the demand of mobile devices and they ignored it. Now they are manipulating their "policy" to escape the monster of people having unlimited plans and not falling to the trap of giving up their $30 unlimited plans for a $30 limited. I HOPE someone catches a "clause" in the law and stops them from implementation of this October 2014 change to now throttle your bandwidth.

Posted via CB10

It's funny how Version offers UNLIMITED data and you actually get unlimited where as in South Afica if you pay for an "UNLIMITED" contract which is around $200 per month you actually only get a maximum of 5GB for the month. Lol

What's the purpose of having Verizon 4g LTE if it's not to stream Netflix, I used 8 to 10 gb the last two months, never streamed any video, just watched a few YouTube videos. I bought a straight talk sim card out of curiosity, i can view all the same social media sites, Bbm, email. It's just a little slower because it's on Edge. It made me think what's the purpose of having all that data speed if you have to watch how you use it

Posted via CB10

On unlimited here with an average of 8-9gb a month and off contract , mostly work related. I have yet to experience any slow down or throttling. I don't stream much. I've really got no options even if I wanted to switch as VZW has the best and most reliable signal in my part of state and for what I'm paying for "unlimited" I could only get 2gb on a contract plan. I'll ride it out.

Posted via CB10

Call me contrarian, but I think this is a sensible plan of action. Let’s face it, there are a LOT of qualifying factors here: met the minimum volume, using a high data stream on a tower that is itself experiencing high volume, etc etc. If I were a regular voice customer that couldn’t make a phone call because some knob wanted to watch a movie over the cellular service, I'd be ticked. I say let the people with low demands get priority over the high volume streamers when the capacity is pushed to the max. People with unlimited plans seem to feel it is their God-given right to burn up as much capacity as they want and screw everyone else.

Posted via CB10

Umm... slower speeds/not throttling. Really? They must think their clients (read suckers) are complete, and stupendous idiots.

Posted via CB10 on my Z30!

I hate when carriers do this. It's not fair. I'm on a 3 Gb data plan. But the unlimited customers should not have to have their data throttled.

Ojani Noa

We here in India have been seeing this from the very start of unlimited plans..

Guess Webster will need to update the definition of unlimited soon

Posted via CB10

In Canada I can only wish for unlimited data. Was 600mb over last month, greedy Bell charged $20...I can go to a movie and have popcorn for less then that.

Posted via Q10

It goes back to the issue of net neutrality we've been hearing about soo much over the past little while. It hasn't even become law yet and you can already see the beginnings of the negative effects that this will have on consumers/users.

This is nothing more then the latest push to create a two tiered Internet, one high -speed lane for those who can afford to pay more and a shitty unpaved sidestreet for the rest of us...

Hell we already have a two tiered society, why not the Internet...

One thing has not changed however, the FCC is still run by a dingo!

Cartman says: Screw you guys I'm going home!

I usually use under 6g so shouldn't affect me. Makes me wonder how much other people are using.

It's a BlackBerry Z30 on Big Red

Besides, this also lets the telecom companies off the hook for investing in infrastructure and upgrading their networks!

Come on, we can't be that naive...we live in an increasingly disposable culture and society operating on the principle of minimum input / maximum output.

You want to know what that looks like, well this is a most basic example...

Cartman says: Screw you guys I'm going home!

As someone that works for VZW, the comment about restoring unlimited data plans being needed to be sent to a special team is correct. Its a corporate team (no direct phone number) that reviews accounts and re-applies pricing plans that were removed and are no longer offered.

Unlimited data plans still can be purchased BTW, just search for unlimited data plans on ebay. AOLed accounts are legit, and it's where I went when I signed up for VZW.

I am not a fan of the throttled of course, but at 8 GB or less a month, I won't be affected. In fact, yesterday I pulled an account with over 100GBs usage, their 3 month highest at 150GB. THAT is in the top 5%. However, they were not being throttled because they lived in a remote area. The people that should be worried about the network optimization are people in cities. LA, New York, Charlotte, Buffalo, etc. Its almost a direct comparison to people in the "XLTE" areas. VZW speeds in these areas have been slow, so that's where I'd worry. I would estimate anyone over about 15GB a month with unlimited in those areas should be concerned.

Of course, about 90% of people are on a tiered More Everything plan, so you people won't be affected at all.

Posted from my phone no one cares about on a network no one cares about.

Can you please verify a hard number of GB that represents a top 5% customer currently?

Also, can you verify that the throttling optimizations are done in real-time per network cell?

Posted via CB10

I checked the policy today and it's been modified. Anything over 4GB is considered "top 5%" now. Glad I live in a small town...

Posted from my phone no one cares about on a network no one cares about.

VZW doesn't have a definitive number of the "top 5%." I personally believe they did it on purpose so they could throttle whoever they wanted under the clause. My personal guess would be anything over 15-20 GBs. As far as congested areas, Bing "VZW XLTE" for areas affected. I can verify there is a feature added to the account when you are being throttled. Customer service and tech can see it, not sure if it appears on MyVerizon yet. It simply says "Network Optimization."

Posted from my phone no one cares about on a network no one cares about.

If I have a 2 gb plan and go over will they throttle me? No they will charge me overages and won't mention bandwidth. This is just a way to get people to switch plans. I would say since the advent of shared data the bandwidth has increased because so few people have unlimited data. If I could get another carrier to work as good as Big Red I'd switch in a heartbeat. I've had them all and their coverage truly is the best.

Good thing me and my measly 2GB/month aren't affected! I'm on wifi at home and work all the time, so I never go over my limit!

 OS 10.2.1.3253/STL 100-4/Verizon Z10