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  (Source: SkeptiSys)
Datapocalypse may be almost upon us

AT&T raised a ruckus early last month when it announced tiered, capped data plans, doing away with "unlimited" data for its smart phone users.  Now Verizon is rumored to soon to be following in suit.

Verizon already offers tiered capped data plans for its 3G PC wireless internet cards ($39.99, 250 MB a month; $59.99, 5 GB a month).  However, its smart phone users currently enjoy a single "unlimited" data allowances capped at a relatively high 5 GB.

Reuters began the rumors early last month when it cited analysts as saying that Verizon was likely to ditch the unlimited option and switch to a tiered pricing scheme.  Now Engadget is claiming that this prediction was correct and that its sources say that a tiered pricing scheme will likely land by July 29.

The report says that the pricing scheme will likely be around that offered by AT&T ($25 for 2GB, $15 for 200MB).  That would mean that Verizon users would ultimately be paying more per MB than they are currently.

Verizon has already suggested that it may adopt a tiered scheme at some point.

All indications are that T-Mobile and Sprint, though, have no intentions of following Verizon and AT&T into the world of capped connections.  Sprint is instead opting to charge users a small premium ($10) on its 4G connections -- T-Mobile may adopt that alternative approach as well.

Will customers embrace AT&T and Verizon's tiered, capped data plans?  Or will they rebel and jump to Sprint and Verizon and agree to pay a nominal fee if they want their data to be transferred at faster rates?  Only time will tell, but it should be interesting to watch for whether Verizon officially airs a tiered smart phone data scheme.


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RE: If they do.....
By Aloonatic on 7/22/2010 4:39:02 AM , Rating: 2
What you and the above (and no doubt many here) are failing to realise is that virtually every mobile phone that you can buy in your local phone shop has a Facebook, twitter and e-mail "app" installed by default now.

When these "unlimited" plans were dreamed up a few years ago, the phone companies were trying to get people to see the benefits of the mobile internet that they had probably paid quite a lot for the license for (I know that 3G license weren't cheap in the UK at any rate) an then the iPhone came along and changed how everyone who uses a mobile phone and what they expect it to do.

So there probably aren't many people who are using a lot of data (like the 5GB that some people here seem to think is usual usage) but I still don't see what people don't understand (the abuse of the worked "unlimited aside, which we need to learn to view in the same was as we view the word "free") about the simple concept of if you use a service more than someone else, you should pay more than someone else, and that is the way that it is going now. Networks are now having to deal with data connections and downloads from a lot more phones than even a couple of years ago, and all those small downloads and even Facebook news-feed refreshes all add up.

It's not just a couple of well informed geeks with expensive phones that are using mobile internet anymore, almost everyone is now (as well as 3G dongles that you can get for your laptop and such). They are uploading photos and video on the move, and all the other stuff that probably comes in under a GB or so a month, but gets no where near 5GB, and the networks are no doubt feeling the affects of the new wave of mobile internet ready phones that are almost all that you can buy now.

Yes, we've had it good with more generous plans that have got us used to using the internet on the move, but did anyone sensibly expect that to continue? Now the companies that have paid out a lot are cashing in, well boo-hoo. This is the free market, that when it doesn't affect you, no doubt many of you say that people should shut up and pay or don't use the service. That's just the way the world works, etc. Well guess what???


RE: If they do.....
By negativeone on 7/22/2010 11:13:01 AM , Rating: 2
What YOU are failing to realize is that this is a bigger issue than you seem to be able to grasp right now.

You people supporting it are failing to realize that you're boxing yourself in. You're supporting a bad precedent.

The tech industry is going the opposite direction of this. Soon you're going to be using more bandwidth too, and then you're going to have to pay more.

The "unlimited" plan is still capped at 5GB, so what you're saying doesn't make sense. It's all a matter of degree.

According to you, you should pay per kilobyte. Want to do that? You'll be paying big bucks though, because otherwise they won't make money.

The only ways they can make money are:
1) force some people to pay more
2) get money off people who aren't using all they paid for (ie only 1 gb out of 2).

Another point you're missing is, right now you're PAYING for 5GB. To be fair, they should make a 2GB plan that's cheaper than what it is now, so you can either keep paying for 5, or move down to 2.


RE: If they do.....
By negativeone on 7/22/2010 11:59:11 AM , Rating: 2
To reiterate,

It's ok to let some people pay less for using less; it's NOT ok to make some people pay more for what you gave them before just because other people are using less.

It's like going to a buffet and upon attempting to exit being charged an additional fee for the anorexic girl from whom the place already made a big profit because she paid the same $10 (or whatever it is where you go) and ate a piece of celery.


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