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Verizon may keep tiered data plan in place  (Source: Reuters)
Tiered data here to stay thanks to family plan users

Smartphone users that have been enjoying “unlimited” data use (for one set price) on devices like the iPhone for quite some time. This was good for heavy users because they could do all they wanted without fear of a massive bill at the end of the month. The problem for carriers came when smartphone sales exploded and people actually started to consume that data. 

Verizon has hinted around at tiered data pricing strategy for months and has even trialed a tiered plan for users that didn’t typically consume much data. Verizon started a $10 monthly data plan that allows a scant 150MB of data use monthly. The goal of the plan was to lure users on family plans that didn't typically use data to try it out.

Apparently the move worked and it seems tiered data pricing may be here to stay at the nation's largest carrier. Verizon CEO Daniel Mead told Reuters at CES, "We've been very encouraged by that [family plan user data adoption]. We think it's helped us in terms of getting more members of a family using data."

The special $10 monthly plan was an offer that was supposed to disappear at the end of January 2011. However, Mead said the promotion is being evaluated and thanks to the success, it may lead to a more permanent plan. He said, "We're considering every option."

Verizon and all of the other carriers are keen to find ways to get more users on their higher margin data plans now that most people have mobile phones. Data use is a key profit center for carriers and Verizon expects its LTE data plans with much faster speeds to bring in more customers.

Mead added, "We're coming into an important phase of growth. I think we're going to see customer growth. We're going to see customer engagement in different ways."


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RE: i don't mind
By BailoutBenny on 1/7/2011 5:17:34 PM , Rating: 0
Oh my, whatever will we do? A provider tries to raise prices? How dare a company try to function in a market! We consumers have no other choice but to have the government step in and price fix! I mean, I surely couldn't decide on my own to go with a provider with attractively priced data plans that suit my needs. I also couldn't decide on my own to just avoid using mobile data services completely! I'm sure that if enough people did not sign up for services and/or discontinued using mobile data plans altogether, the prices would increase and bandwidth would decrease as a way to attract new subscribers. These companies wouldn't cut into profit a little to lower the price or, heaven forbid, innovate and upgrade their infrastructure to support lower price points, maybe even add features. No, none of that happens when people can just bitch to the government who then introduces laws and regulations that increase the costs for everyone; at least the whiners can say they made a difference.

The internet is a service. Landline, wireless, it doesn't matter. If it costs too much, don't ask the government to fix the problem, that only causes more problems. Just stop paying for the service. Not buying things has a remarkable tendency to lead to lower prices and the elimination of waste from the market.

That will never happen, though. People across the world are too entitled anymore and feel like they shouldn't have to be productive to afford the luxuries in life. Thus they complain to their respective governments. Then you get bloated telecoms that take tax money and don't upgrade their networks with said money like they are supposed to. Or you wind up with one cable provider in an area whose rates always increase and whose content always sucks because no one can compete with them. Or you get an automotive company that makes products nobody wants yet is kept alive through the taxpayer trough. Or rail lines that haven't turned a profit since being taken over by the government multiple decades ago and basically run tax payer subsidized. Or, well, I could keep going but I think you might get the picture. Of course, the government can turn all those little red columns in their accounting books into black ones by drafting new laws that make 2+2=5 but that is a different matter.

"Vista runs on Atom ... It's just no one uses it". -- Intel CEO Paul Otellini
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