The pricing structure offers monthly plans of $30 for 2GB of data, $50 for 5GB and $80 for 10GB.
Network operator Verizon Wireless confirmed the end of its unlimited
data plans, to be replaced with a tiered pricing structure, as a flood
of smartphones, tablets and other bandwidth-hungry devices descend on
the company's network. The new pricing structure offers customers
monthly plans of $30 for 2GB of data, $50 for 5GB of data and $80 for
10GB of data. A $10 plan for 75MB of data is available to customers
with feature phones with limited Internet capabilities.
The decision sees Verizon following rival carriers T-Mobile and
AT&T in switching from an all-you-can-eat service to a tiered
approach. Changes to the pricing terms of AT&T's high-speed
Internet broadband service went into effect May 2. The changes, which
include additional language to several portions of the customer
contract, include a data cap of 150GB per month for DSL customers and
250GB for U-Verse subscribers.
Consequently, customers who exceed their monthly data allowance will
be notified after their first offense, and additional notices each time
their monthly usage exceeds 65 percent, 90 percent and 100 percent of
the monthly allowance. The policy changes-not unlike AT&T's mobile
broadband policies, which blamed a tiny portion of users for the bulk
of its network traffic-have more than AT&T's top data users
concerned, with some viewing it as a possible threat to online
T-Mobile may eventually become the property of competitor AT&T,
as the two companies plan a controversial merger, the company in April
aimed to stay competitive with AT&T with its $80 Even More
unlimited calling, texting and data plan on its 4G network. The plan is
contingent on a two-year contract and features "no overage charges,"
according to T-Mobile. However, customers who exceed 2GB of usage per
billing period, the company explained in the statement, "will still
have access to unlimited data at reduced speeds until their new billing
Racing to catch up to Verizon's 4G timeline and support its own
growing numbers of data users, AT&T has made a $39 billion bid to
purchase competitor T-Mobile. While this would give it the wireless
spectrum it needs to extend its network to 97-plus percent of the
nation, it would also put more than 80 percent of the U.S. wireless
market in the control of AT&T and Verizon-supremely hindering
competition, critics argue, which could ultimately hurt consumers in
the wallet and slow innovation.
The fourth major U.S. carrier, Sprint, offers a Simply Everything
Plan-including unlimited text, Web, calling, email, social networking,
GPS navigation, TV and radio-for $100 plus the $10 Premium Data add-on,
or an Everything Data plan, with unlimited text, Web and calling to and
from any mobile phone for $70 a month plus the $10 add-on.
Verizon recently began taking orders for the LTE-enabled version of
the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet, offering the 4G version of the
device for $529. The 16GB or 32GB models are available for $529.99 and
$629.99, respectively, although customers must agree to a two-year
contract in order to get the tablets for those prices. The company
originally listed the preorder date as June 8, and the company's
Website notes consumers will still have to wait 4-6 weeks for delivery.
Nathan Eddy is Associate Editor, Midmarket, at eWEEK.com. Before joining eWEEK.com, Nate was a writer with ChannelWeb and he served as an editor at FierceMarkets. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.