AT&T to join Verizon in offering shared data plans beginning August 23

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
AT&T said Monday that it will join rival Verizon Wireless later this month in offering shared data plans to its subscribers, allowing them to spread their monthly data plans across multiple devices for an additional fee.

The previously announced plans, dubbed "Mobile Share," include unlimited text, talk and a pre-set data plan for a single device at a fixed price. Additional devices can then be added to share the data plan for between $10 and $30, depending on the type of device.

For instance, a 4GB iPhone data plan ($40) with Unlimited Talk & Text ($70) and an additional iPad ($10) will run $120 per month, while a 10GB iPhone data plan ($30) with Unlimited Talk & Text ($70) ($120) and an additional MacBook Pro ($20) will fetch $210 per month.

And since it can be confusing to figure out just which plan may work best, the carrier has launched a Mobile Share Planner tool as a simple way to estimate your current usage on each device.





The planner calculates your total estimated usage and recommends the right Mobile Share plan, from 1 GB to 20 GB. The tool also shows you the estimated costs for that plan.

AT&T says that subscribers can adopt the new plan without modifying their contract but says subscribers must tie the plan to an active smartphone subscription, meaning the shared data plans won't be available for purchase without voice and text.



Unlike Verizon, however, the carrier says it plans to continue offering its existing mobile plans to customers.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48


    Publishers take note. If you want to get away with Collusion, follow AT&T and Verizon's example.

  • Reply 2 of 48
    ... with per-device fees which make them largely immaterial for swaths of users.
  • Reply 3 of 48
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,496member


    The planner tool isn't at the link in the article, you have to search for it. It's also a very simple tool and would benefit a lot of current AT&T users if it were able to take current equipment and usage then show a comparison between our current plan and mobile share. Once this is done, we could modify or add equipment types to see what works best. I created a series of spreadsheets and found the cost/device doesn't necessarily drop when you add more data, it all depends on the type of equipment being added. As long as you have a non-smartphone, it appears you're going to pay more for mobile share than AT&T's traditional plans. (Yes, there are family plan users who still use "dumb" phones.)

  • Reply 4 of 48
    jason98jason98 Posts: 766member
    So I pay $50 for 2Gb iPhone plan and $30 for 3gb iPad plan. Comes to $80 for 5gb.
    If i switch to shared price model, it is going to be $120 for 4gb or $135 for 6gb.

    FU AT&T!
  • Reply 5 of 48
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,740member


    Can't imagine how fast my teenage son would burn through a shared data plan.


     


    AT&T, we need account-holder configurable quotas per device!

  • Reply 6 of 48
    How can one add a MBP when they don't come equipped with Cellular WWAN?
  • Reply 7 of 48


    This old AI article:


     


    http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/151354/at-t-shared-data-plans-launch-late-august-start-at-45-per-smartphone


     


    says that tethering is included. Now it is not mentioned. Can somebody clarify, please?

  • Reply 8 of 48
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Are these plans attractive to anyone? It seems like you need a fairly high number of devices and a certain type of usage pattern for this to be beneficial.
  • Reply 9 of 48
    al_bundyal_bundy Posts: 1,525member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    Are these plans attractive to anyone? It seems like you need a fairly high number of devices and a certain type of usage pattern for this to be beneficial.


    yep


     


    carriers are trying to push tablets but no one wants another monthly payment


     


    this way they can sneak in android tabs at the same or lower retail price as the ipad


     


    its also to charge the mobile workers and small business owners more money. any business with business/consumer customers you always find a way to charge the business customers more

  • Reply 10 of 48
    johnnashjohnnash Posts: 129member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lekhtuz View Post


    This old AI article:


     


    http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/151354/at-t-shared-data-plans-launch-late-august-start-at-45-per-smartphone


     


    says that tethering is included. Now it is not mentioned. Can somebody clarify, please?



     

    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

    From the web page:


     


    AT&T Mobile Share plans include a monthly data charge plus a monthly charge for each device you add up to a total of 10 devices. At least one smartphone is required to be part of each AT&T Mobile Share group. Includes Unlimited Talk & Text for all phones, FREE Mobile Hotspot for capable smartphones, and no roaming or long distance charges nationwide!


    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

     



     


     


    I'm actually cautiously optimistic.  we have 5 phones, 3 of which are smart phones and quick math without taxes (etc) says I'm actually going to save money.  However as this is AT&T, I'm sure I'm wrong about that somehow.


    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

     
  • Reply 11 of 48
    plovellplovell Posts: 818member
    For a big-ish family they may work.

    As a single user with iPhone + iPad, no way.

    I already had paid too much to AT&T for my minimal usage (WiFi at home and work mean I have low usage) so I am way better off now.
  • Reply 12 of 48
    shenshen Posts: 434member
    Yes, these plans really are good for some people. For example if tethering is in fact included, my family will turn off two iPads, (both for work) and tether them to the iPhones always near them. We will also upgrade my son from a dumb phone to an iPhone, and get a 6gig package, and actually save $80 a month. It depends on your usage.

    Which is why I am confused by all the hostility from some people. It isn't like they are going to force you to this plan, they are simply adding it. If it is better, yay! If not, stay where you are. Why the hatered?
  • Reply 13 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by johnnash View Post


     


    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

    From the web page:


     


    AT&T Mobile Share plans include a monthly data charge plus a monthly charge for each device you add up to a total of 10 devices. At least one smartphone is required to be part of each AT&T Mobile Share group. Includes Unlimited Talk & Text for all phones, FREE Mobile Hotspot for capable smartphones, and no roaming or long distance charges nationwide!


    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

     



     


     


    I'm actually cautiously optimistic.  we have 5 phones, 3 of which are smart phones and quick math without taxes (etc) says I'm actually going to save money.  However as this is AT&T, I'm sure I'm wrong about that somehow.


    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }

     



     


    Thank you.


     


    I am not that lucky. Shared plan is more expensive for me mostly because of 2 dumb phones that I have on the account. But whoever has 1 smartphone and several 3G tablets will probably win.


     


    Also I wonder why dumb phones that uses pretty much no data cost 3 times more than tablets which can burn through several gigs easily. Funny marketing?

  • Reply 14 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AjbDtc826 View Post



    How can one add a MBP when they don't come equipped with Cellular WWAN?


     


    USB Connect:


     


    image

  • Reply 15 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by shen View Post



    Yes, these plans really are good for some people. For example if tethering is in fact included, my family will turn off two iPads, (both for work) and tether them to the iPhones always near them. We will also upgrade my son from a dumb phone to an iPhone, and get a 6gig package, and actually save $80 a month. It depends on your usage.

    Which is why I am confused by all the hostility from some people. It isn't like they are going to force you to this plan, they are simply adding it. If it is better, yay! If not, stay where you are. Why the hatered?


     


    Are you willing to bet that old plans will not be discontinued shortly thereafter?

  • Reply 16 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by shen View Post



    Yes, these plans really are good for some people. For example if tethering is in fact included, my family will turn off two iPads, (both for work) and tether them to the iPhones always near them. We will also upgrade my son from a dumb phone to an iPhone, and get a 6gig package, and actually save $80 a month. It depends on your usage.

    Which is why I am confused by all the hostility from some people. It isn't like they are going to force you to this plan, they are simply adding it. If it is better, yay! If not, stay where you are. Why the hatered?


    Hostility?


    Perhaps my experience is unique... I have 4 iPhones on an ATT plan - all with grandfathered "unlimited" and 3 iPhones and 1 dumb phone on Verizon (some of my family) one of the iPhones is also unlimited, the second was registered too late and is on the lowest data plan. When I went to add the third iPhone - i was told i should change to the shared - but it was much more expensive. When I declined - OI was told, in fact I didn't have a choice!!!! Only the 'helpful manager agreed, and suggested it was their computer system was wrong ?????

  • Reply 17 of 48


    I don't get it.


     


    Right now I have two smart phones with 200 MB each, a 4G iPad with 3 GB data for a total of $130 for 3.4 GB data.


     


    The new plan is $40 + $45 + $45 + $10 = $140 for 1 GB data.  


     


    Now why do I want to do the new plan?  Both Verizon and AT&T should just call it "price increase" for what it really is.


     


    Maybe I should move to Sprint.

  • Reply 18 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    Are these plans attractive to anyone? It seems like you need a fairly high number of devices and a certain type of usage pattern for this to be beneficial.


     


    modestly at 5phones/10GB as well as at 2/6.


     


    I've got 4s smartphones on my plan and one dumb phone (and a wifi ipad), with about 5.4GB of monthly data (I've got an unlimited plan, and I get throttled at 3GB, and my 2 200MB plans occasionally incurr a $15 charge) over the 4 phones plus family text.   At  700 minutes (and a lot of old roll-over) I'm at  $243.


     


    A new plan would put me at $260.  BUT... for just $10 more, I get 10GB.  I can only imagine my consumption if I had LTE bandwidth, and no upcharge to upgrade the last phone to an iPhone


     


    So, I think if you're in the 4+ phone range with at least a 4GB consumption, and are looking at LTE, I think it's a good fit.


     


    Now that said, my kids are all graduating from their grad schools next year (time to cut the cord, so to speak), so I'm likely going down to 2 phones.


     


    At 6B at 2phones... 160 is $10 less than under the current plan if I were able to drop the kids for no charge.

  • Reply 19 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by winstein2010 View Post


    I don't get it.


     


    Right now I have two smart phones with 200 MB each, a 4G iPad with 3 GB data for a total of $130 for 3.4 GB data.


     


    The new plan is $40 + $45 + $45 + $10 = $140 for 1 GB data.  


     


    Now why do I want to do the new plan?  Both Verizon and AT&T should just call it "price increase" for what it really is.


     


    Maybe I should move to Sprint.



     


     


    Current: $80 (1400/min family) + 4x$10 (additional lines, 2 smart + 2 feature) + $20 (shared texting, got $10 discount from retentions) + $30 (unlimited data) + 2x$25 (2GB data plan) = $220


     


    New VZ for comparison: 3x$40 (3 smartphones) + 2x$30 (2 feature phones, not actually consuming any data) + $70 (4GB shared data) = $250 (tethering NOT included)


     


    New AT&T: 3x$40 (3 smartphones) + 2*$30 (2 feature phones, not actually consuming any data) + $70 (4GB shared data) = $250 (tethering included)


     


    I can get extra 2G of data (total of 6G) for only $5 because of per smartphone price drop.
  • Reply 20 of 48


    The big benefits to this plan which many pass over:


     


    Unlimited Talk


    Unlimited Text


    Free Tethering


     


    If you want to compare it on an equal level to your current plan, take into account the cost to add those features to your current plan as well. This new pricing option is for those in which the three major features above are something they are willing to pay a little more to get.

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