Print 17 comment(s) - last by Solandri.. on Oct 26 at 11:36 PM

Sprint grabs for tablet customers with discount data

Sprint has announced it will be introducing new rate plans for data usage on tablets supporting 4G LTE technology. Currently Sprint uses WiMAX in most of its 4G areas, but as it rolls out LTE networks moving forward, it plans to offer rate plans with up to 20% more data than competitors for the same price.

The move is an attempt to grab more customers as wireless providers crackdown on the amount of data wireless users get each month. Sprint is currently the third-largest mobile carrier in the United States and recently announced that it would be waiving activation fees for a limited time.

The activation fees will reportedly be waived on both 3G and 4G LTE tablets. The new data rate plans, specifically for 4G LTE tablets, will start at $14.99 per month for a meager 300 MB of data. For $34.99 per month, users will get 3 GB of data. Two other plans offering 6 GB of data for $49.99 per month and 12 GB of data for $79.99 per month will also be offered.

The best part about these new rate plans is that they require no contract. Users who already have a smartphone with Sprint can add a plan to get 1 GB of data on the tablet for $15 per month or a paltry 100 MB for an additional $10 per month.
It was only a few days ago that the Japanese mobile operator called Softbank Corp. announced that it was purchasing 70% of Sprint Nextel for $20.1 billion.

Source: Reuters

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I wonder....
By EasyC on 10/25/2012 9:22:36 AM , Rating: 2
If this applies to USB LTE devices as well. I hope so. I would love to add this to my CarPC. 15$ for 1GB of 4G data, sign me up!

RE: I wonder....
By AMDftw on 10/25/2012 9:31:00 AM , Rating: 3
haha I have a carpc as well and just tether my hacked android to it. :)

RE: I wonder....
By EasyC on 10/25/2012 10:24:33 AM , Rating: 2
As did I, but I'd rather use something native to the CarPC, instead of using my phone's battery.

I know, I know you can plug the phone in, but I'd rather just leave it in my pocket.

RE: I wonder....
By FITCamaro on 10/25/2012 2:25:39 PM , Rating: 2
You drive with your phone in your pocket?

RE: I wonder....
By EasyC on 10/25/2012 2:50:58 PM , Rating: 2
Mostly. Texts and calls go through the stereo.

What about users who need < 1 GB but > 300 MB?
By boeush on 10/25/2012 1:10:59 PM , Rating: 2
The new data rate plans, specifically for 4G LTE tablets, will start at $14.99 per month for a meager 300 MB of data. For $34.99 per month, users will get 3 GB of data. Two other plans offering 6 GB of data for $49.99 per month and 12 GB of data for $79.99 per month will also be offered.
Personally, I tend to use somewhere between 300 MB and 600 MB per month over the cell network interface (because for the most part, I go onto WiFi for my data consumption needs.) Under Sprint's plans, I'd have to buy the 3GB plan even though I'd normally use less than 20% of the available bandwidth. What a raw deal! I'd rather have an option to buy a 1 GB plan for $20/month. Probably a lot of other people would fall through that doughnut hole.

By CityZen on 10/25/2012 1:49:11 PM , Rating: 2
Not really, you can still keep the $14.99 plan for 300 MB of data, and just pay for the additional usage. Sprint's charge for additional usage is $0.05/MB, so as long as you use less than 700 MB, it's more convenient than going for the $ 34.99 plan. Do your Math, people!

By inperfectdarkness on 10/25/2012 10:05:00 AM , Rating: 2
I'll buy when it's in the 200gb for $100 range.

Bye Bye Unlimited
By mcnabney on 10/25/12, Rating: -1
RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By AmbroseAthan on 10/25/2012 9:26:24 AM , Rating: 5
I wish people would reach the article...

This pricing only applies to tablets/hotspots etc. Sprint has not had unlimited data for these for a long time (and it used to be a loophole that allowed it as opposed to policy).

They did not change the pricing for their phone data plans.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By mcnabney on 10/25/2012 9:40:48 AM , Rating: 2
But that is obviously coming. Verizon and AT&T backed away from unlimited the exact same way. From the perspective of existing customers - adding a tablet with X GB is generally cheaper under Verizon and AT&T - which is actually kind of unusual.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By othercents on 10/25/2012 10:07:48 AM , Rating: 2
I don't expect Sprint to stick with unlimited especially if they can become #2 in service quality and start to eat up AT&T's client base, but at this point the article is specifically about tablets. AT&T and Verizon backed away from unlimited on phones way before tablets were available, however Sprint has more wireless bandwidth than AT&T and Verizon.

We shall see what the future holds, however at this point Sprint doesn't see tablets as their bread and butter business.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By Samus on 10/25/2012 11:47:11 AM , Rating: 2
So, when Sprint doesn't have unlimited data anymore, what possible reason is there to stick with them?

Even if this were the case, I can think of a few good reasons to stick with Sprint.

MVNO's being the biggest reason. Boost, Virgin, Ting, etc, are all the lowest priced cell carriers in the country.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By mcnabney on 10/25/2012 9:33:16 AM , Rating: 2
And AT&T and Verizon don't have contracts on their tablets either - so Sprint is hardly doing anything different. The Verizon and AT&T websites also allow a tablet to be added to their shared-data plans for $10/mo - less Sprint. So if you already have smartphones it is actually a bit cheaper to buy a slightly larger chunk of data (or even stick with what you have) and pay the lower monthly fee.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By Solandri on 10/25/2012 9:52:24 AM , Rating: 2
Their customer service may not be the worst anymore, but their network is still pretty lousy. My cheap friends do nothing but complain about it since they frequently can't get signal in the suburbs and have horribly slow (think dialup) connections.

Meh. If you get the right plan with Sprint, you also get free roaming (as long as a majority of your usage a month is with Sprint). Sprint has roaming peering agreements with Verizon. So if I'm in a spotty Sprint area, I just put my phone in force roam mode and use Verizon's towers.

The only drawback is data roaming is limited to 1xRTT speeds (up to 144 kbps). I'm waiting to see how their 4G LTE network turns out before deciding to bail or stay.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By mcnabney on 10/25/2012 1:33:59 PM , Rating: 2
They do not have a roaming agreement with Verizon.

I'm sure they do have deals with independent CDMA tower owners that also work with Verizon, but they don't have access to the massive number of Verizon towers. This is especially clear in my city. I routinely have signal on my Verizon phone while others I am with have nothing on Sprint.

RE: Bye Bye Unlimited
By Solandri on 10/26/2012 11:36:02 PM , Rating: 2
Yes they do have roaming agreements with Verizon. The previous place I lived only had a Verizon tower, and my Sprint phone worked fine there while roaming.

The problem is if your phone is picking up the faintest Sprint signal, it won't roam. That's why you have to force your phone into roam-only mode. Earlier phones had this as one of the optional settings. New ones don't. For rooted smartphones, you can buy a $2 app which lets you do it.

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