Verizon Wireless this week announced a flat-rate calling plan for its third-generation wireless network customers, in an attempt to woo enterprise customers who download large amounts of data on their phones.
The Bedminster, N.J., company also will begin offering its 1XRTT CDMA 1X Express Network third-generation wireless service to 29 more markets.
Beginning today, the high-speed service will be available in several cities from coast to coast, including Kansas City, which is the home of Sprint PCS.
Sprint PCS plans to roll out its own 3G service nationwide this summer, while Verizon Wireless has been rolling out its own service in geographical chunks.
The service also will be available in greater Los Angles; San Diego; metropolitan Milwaukee; Vermonts three largest cities: Burlington, Waterbury and Montpelier; Austin, San Antonio, Corpus Christi, McAllen and Brownsville, Texas; and several cities in upstate New York.
The network offers average data transmission speeds of 40K to 60K bps, with occasional bursts of up to 144K bps. Verizon Wireless sells two wireless phones for the 1X service; both can function as modems when connected to laptop computers. The service also is available on the Audiovox Thera, a handheld device that runs Microsoft Corp.s Pocket PC operating system and also works as a phone, as well on a PC Card modem for laptop computers.
In June, Verizon Wireless will begin offering a flat-rate data service for $99.99 per month--although there will be some restrictions. (Officials declined to say what the restrictions will be.)
Currently the company offers megabyte usage plans for enterprise customers, which include $35 per month for 10MB of data up to $150 per month for 150MB of data. The lower monthly prices will still be available after the company starts offering the flat rate.
The service also is available in time-based usage plans that range from $35 per month for 150 minutes to $75 for 600 minutes.