ItsOn's Zact Shows How Data Plans Should Be: Exactly Right Every Month

By Wayne Rash  |  Posted 2013-05-13 Print this article Print
Data plans

While users can get a tailored plan from Zact that exactly matches their needs, the unlimited plans from the major carriers are coming down in price, driven at least in part by T-Mobile's aggressive pricing. With Zact, the closest thing the company has to an unlimited plan is 5,000 minutes of voice, 15,000 text messages and 5GB of data. If you got that, it would cost $225.88. Of course, I realize that almost no one will ever use the maximum on all three.

But what's not unusual is that you could hit one of those. The 5GB limit could be a problem if you like to watch movies with your phone, or if you're sharing your plan with high school or college kids who can rack up some impressive text message numbers. With T-Mobile, I could do all of those things and still pay $70.

Of course, most people don't do all of those things. In fact, most don't come close to doing any those maximum numbers, and in situations such as that, Zact can in fact save money by tailoring your service needs. So what Zact is doing is allowing you to create a plan that exactly matches what you're doing, but not necessarily one that will save you money.

But what Zact also does is adjust your bill to reflect what you've actually done, so that you're never paying more than you should for any type of usage. For a lot of users, this meets a very important need. You don't need to predict your data and text message usage, Zact figures it out for you.

There are some limitations. You have to use a phone from Zact, and it has to run on Sprint. For some users, the fact that Zact sells unsubsidized phones might be a shock, although T-Mobile changed to that plan a few weeks ago. Ultimately, buying your own phone rather than paying for a subsidized device in your phone bill saves a lot of money. But T-Mobile will finance the phone over 24 months at zero interest.

What Zact has done is something that's a very good idea, and if it's successful enough to attract customers, it may change the way carriers charge for calling plans. But that doesn't necessarily mean it's also less expensive, because it may not be.


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