Reaction to AT&T's smartphone
data plan adjustments have been rather mixed. On the one hand,
smartphone users that have greater access to Wi-Fi hotspots or simply
don't use much 3G data stand to save $5 to $15 per month on their
On the other hand, those who have grown
attached to their "unlimited" data plans took serious
offense to the 2GB caps that AT&T is now imposing for new
smartphone contracts starting June 7 (it should be noted that those
that wish to keep their $30 unlimited data plans can continue to do
so, and even upgrade to new hardware while keeping the unlimited data
Our own "unscientific"
poll of tech enthusiasts shows that nearly a quarter of
smartphone users consume more than 2GB of data per month.
AT&T has offered a tethering option
for smartphones in the past (with the exception of the iPhone), so
it's not exactly unheard of to charge for the feature. However, with
this new 2GB cap in place, one thing that has seemed quite puzzling
to many people is AT&T's $20 tethering charge in the face of
these lower caps.
Mark Collins, AT&T's senior VP of
data and voice products, mobility and consumer products, thinks that
it's quite simple:
is enabling something you can’t do today. You can use one device
and get multiple connections so it’s more useful to you. You’re
going to use more data so the price is based on the value that will
Tethering a smartphone to a notebook
would no doubt result in an increased rate of data consumption. With
the old tethering data plan in place, customers could
tether up to 5GB which should be enough to cover most heavy
downloaders. However, with these new restrictions in place, it
doesn't matter if you are using your smartphone for everyday tasks or
tethering; you're still limited to same restrictive 2GB of data
It remains to be seen how long these
2GB data caps will stay in place in an increasingly connected world,
but boosted limits for tethering can't come any fast enough it seems.
quote: That capability is enabling something you can’t do today.
quote: But it is strange that they are doing this at the same time that they are dropping their data bucket from 5GB to 2GB. You would think that paying the higher rate for tethering would give you a bigger bucket of GBs?
quote: I get 700 minutes to use on my family plan. I have to pay $10 for each extra line on my family plan, yet I don't get any more minutes. Is that also outrageous?
quote: I guess if you consider "embarrassing" as "charging way way more" in Verizon's case.It's like at LEAST $99 for a smartphone plan on Verizon. ATT can now be had as little as $55. Guess who's not getting my business? Verizon.
quote:That capability is enabling something you can’t do today. You can use one device and get multiple connections so it’s more useful to you. You’re going to use more data so the price is based on the value that will be delivered.
quote: Do these execs really think people are that retarded.