AT&T introduces larger, costlier data plans: $30 for 3GB, $20 for 300MB

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  • Reply 61 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by gwmac View Post


    I can already predict the Sprint sucks, Sprint is slow, Sprint will cancel unlimited data, blah blah....replies to follow. But for me it works well and is the only remaining carrier that allows new customers to have not only unlimited data, but also texts and calls. If you are happy with your carrier, no reason to consider changing, but if you aren't happy, do something about it.



    1) It's not the last US carrier with unlimited data, it's the last US MNO with nationwide coverage with unlimited data. I don't know of any regional MNOs with unlimited data but I also don't for a fact that there aren't any so I can't rule them out.



    2) It's very likely that Sprint will drop unlimited data the way it was predicted other carriers would drop unlimited as there network saturation increased with ever increasing smartphones users paying for more expensive plans. If Sprint does this it's actually a sign they are actually becoming healthier as a carrier.
  • Reply 62 of 82
    bwikbwik Posts: 562member
    If only ATT and T-mobile could have merged! Hopefully all the spectrum can be soaked up, to herd all the American people into ATT's spectrum where they can be slaughtered like pigs? Oh, I mean served?
  • Reply 63 of 82
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    1) It's not the last US carrier with unlimited data, it's the last US MNO with nationwide coverage with unlimited data. I don't know of any regional MNOs with unlimited data but I also don't for a fact that there aren't any so I can't rule them out.



    I just meant that of the 3 national iPhone carriers it is the last one to allow new customers in with unlimited data.



    2) It's very likely that Sprint will drop unlimited data the way it was predicted other carriers would drop unlimited as there network saturation increased with ever increasing smartphones users paying for more expensive plans. If Sprint does this it's actually a sign they are actually becoming healthier as a carrier.



    So dropping unlimited would be a sign that they are healthier? Well, I hope they stay sick a while longer then. Not so sick as to cease operations but sick enough to keep unlimited. Sprint has every reason to keep unlimited as long as possible. They are smaller than Verizon or AT&T so this is their main advantage to attract new customers and keep current ones. They also have a boatload of spectrum when you include the ESMR IDEN band ( Nextel) along with their Clearwire licensed band in addition to their PCS. I would be shocked if they don't continue unlimited data for at least another 4 years at a minimum. I am not saying it will last forever, but even if unlimited data ends, their data allowance will still be far more generous than AT&T or Verizon I would imagine. For example: 5GB for $30 and grandfather the unlimited users.



    In any case, why worry about the future? If you sign a contract today you are guaranteed unlimited data for 2 years.
  • Reply 64 of 82
    I don't understand why anyone is on AT&T unless they have a grandfathered unlimited data plan. The service is still miserable with plenty of black out locations in major metropolitan areas.
  • Reply 65 of 82
    At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I will repeat what has been said countless times about this topic.



    It's about where you are. Each carrier has their strengths and weaknesses in each market, let alone subdivisions and individual neighborhoods in each of those places. Driving down a freeway, you might drop your call on two carriers, but not the others at Spot A; a few miles later at Spot B, a different carrier will have problems.



    The point is that carrier coverage isn't a uniform blanket throughout the territory. AT&T has a notably great coverage in its home state of Texas, but poor coverage in metropolitan San Francisco and Manhattan.



    Frankly, I think all US mobile operators suck eggs, and the annual survey by Consumer Reports appears to corroborate this sentiment. Basically, Verizon is a 37" giant in a land of three-foot midgets. No American mobile operator has a customer satisfaction rating that should elicit pride. They all basically suck. Which one sucks more? Well, that really depends on where you live, although more people seem to live in a place where AT&T sucks slightly more than Verizon.



    The fact that there are any American mobile operator fanboys is utterly confounding. If those people had any experience with mobile operators from other industrialized nations, they would probably put in a deliberate effort to reduce the amount of money they were handing over to American mobile operators.
  • Reply 66 of 82
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post


    At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I will repeat what has been said countless times about this topic.



    It's about where you are. Each carrier has their strengths and weaknesses in each market, let alone subdivisions and individual neighborhoods in each of those places. Driving down a freeway, you might drop your call on two carriers, but not the others at Spot A; a few miles later at Spot B, a different carrier will have problems.



    The point is that carrier coverage isn't a uniform blanket throughout the territory. AT&T has a notably great coverage in its home state of Texas, but poor coverage in metropolitan San Francisco and Manhattan.



    Frankly, I think all US mobile operators suck eggs, and the annual survey by Consumer Reports appears to corroborate this sentiment. Basically, Verizon is a 37" giant in a land of three-foot midgets. No American mobile operator has a customer satisfaction rating that should elicit pride. They all basically suck. Which one sucks more? Well, that really depends on where you live, although more people seem to live in a place where AT&T sucks slightly more than Verizon.



    The fact that there are any American mobile operator fanboys is utterly confounding. If those people had any experience with mobile operators from other industrialized nations, they would probably put in a deliberate effort to reduce the amount of money they were handing over to American mobile operators.



    I basically agree with your post, it all depends on where you live and even within a city there can be problem areas. I am fortunate to live in a city where I get great coverage wherever I go which may be an exception. I do travel on average about 8 weeks a year not counting week-end trips and have never really had problems when I travel either.



    I am not a fanboy of Sprint by any means and also think it is funny that any carrier could have any fanboy at all considering their upwardly spiraling fees and decreasing amounts of usage allowances. Where I disagree though is not being jealous of most plans offered on foreign carriers. True, some nations in Europe and in other countries might have better coverage in their highly densely populated areas, but they have plenty of places with poor to no reception as well. Considering the size of our country I think we get pretty good coverage. Try and find a plan on ANY European carrier with my level of usage for $50 a month. (unlimited data/ unlimited calls to any mobile phone/unlimited calls to landline after 7PM weekdays and anytime on week-ends with a 500 minute allowance during peak times/unlimited text and picture messages. Sure you can find plenty of plans in Europe for $15 to $40 a month but you really get very little for that money if you ever talk on your phone. For someone like me that easily goes over 2,000 minutes of talk a month I would pay a fortune in most foreign countries.



    When I lived in Japan I was terrified to use my phone for much beyond texting. I remember paying about ¥12,000 one month for just using 350 talk minutes. The grass is always greener on the other side but I much prefer the American plan model, or at least Sprint's model of unlimited everything for $50.
  • Reply 67 of 82
    The fact of that matter is that some European countries have similar population densities to the United States, yet provide stunningly better cellular coverage than that U.S. I get so-so cellular reception at home, mediocre coverage at work. Do I care? No, not much since everything is routed through Google Voice. At home and at work, I get data via a much more reliable WiFi network. Voice calls over WiFi (VoIP) is an option, especially for outgoing calls at home because I don't pay a dime. At work, everything is routed through a landline, cellular voice reception is not an issue.



    The biggest variables to me are cellular performance in the places I visit, but there's little I can do about that. It's not like I'm going to pick a cellular provider based on a handful of domestic trips I take every couple of years.



    Not only that, these are countries that are years ahead of the U.S. in cellular technology deployment. Sweden is one such example, where they have great coverage to an audience that has similar population density, and they have had LTE for years.



    It's hard to compare service for natives to those of visiting foreigners, especially in countries where much of the cellular service is being paid for via taxes. Short-term visitor plans will always be a bit higher.



    That said, I prefer the pay-as-you-go model.



    Frankly, if I really wanted the unlimited talk/text/data service, I'd go with Straight Talk ($45 per month after you get a reconditioned Nokia E71 for $49 or $99). But I don't need unlimited service, so I'm fine with paying an average of $12 per month.



    Why should I pay the $50 all-you-can-eat buffet fee when I'm only going to have a $5 bowl of soup? Admittedly, I am a lousy consumer of cellular services, but hey, I'm happy with what I am taking from these mobile operators.
  • Reply 68 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post


    The fact of that matter is that some European countries have similar population densities to the United States, yet provide stunningly better cellular coverage than that U.S.



    You can't take a similar population density of a tiny country that matches a huge country when the huge country is split between expansive gaps of unpopulated lands and heavily congested cities. It's like taking a country with a huge middle class that averages out to a country with a huge gap between the poor and rich. Your results are flawed.



    What you can do is compare a city to a city with the same population density for the same physical size but then you have to account for other factors like terrain and laws. Laws include towers not getting built because people don't want to see them and have the right to prevent them despite a need.
  • Reply 69 of 82
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post




    Why should I pay the $50 all-you-can-eat buffet fee when I'm only going to have a $5 bowl of soup? Admittedly, I am a lousy consumer of cellular services, but hey, I'm happy with what I am taking from these mobile operators.



    That is my point, for people that don't use their phone a lot that would be fine, but for my usage in most European counties I would be paying many times what I pay here. Choice is fine and I am all for options, but for people that actually use their phones quite a lot there is not a lot of choice in most of Europe that I found.



    I lived in Spain, France, and Japan and also traveled all over Europe. There are a lot of dead spots in Europe out in the countryside just like here. Australia is fine as long as you are in the major cities, but sucks if you go even slightly off the beaten trail. Even as densely packed as Japan is due to terrain and other issues you can easily find dead spots especially in the mountains (and Japan is about 80% mountainous) As small as England is compared to the U.S. I was surprised at how often I could not get a signal in many parts of Northumbria. I will admit that Scandinavia did have good coverage but there are plenty of areas elsewhere that are just as bad as here. It is not as rosy a picture as some people like to paint.
  • Reply 70 of 82
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    What you can do is compare a city to a city with the same population density for the same physical size but then you have to account for other factors like terrain and laws. Laws include towers not getting built because people don't want to see them and have the right to prevent them despite a need.



    Well then, the comparison possibilities are limited if not nearly impossible.



    Heck, it's difficult to discuss certain US cities (Manhattan, San Francisco). The laws are changing anyhow and much of this has to do with the whims of the current members of a review board. Or even the citizenry.



    A cellular tower proposal that would pass in Mountain View might not get the green light a mile away in Palo Alto.



    I will point out that some of these European countries have similar concentrations of heavily populated urban areas and lightly populated rural areas as the USA. That's why I used Sweden as an example.



    Remember that hard-wired Internet broadband coverage roughly mirrors cellular performance in these countries. Broadband Internet speeds in Western Europe blows doors on USA broadband speeds, and that doesn't even begin to address the population density issues.



    No one on this planet should be defending American mobile operators and ISPs for their ineptitude in providing world-class networking.
  • Reply 71 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post


    Well then, the comparison possibilities are limited if not nearly impossible.



    Heck, it's difficult to discuss certain US cities (Manhattan, San Francisco). The laws are changing anyhow and much of this has to do with the whims of the current members of a review board. Or even the citizenry.



    A cellular tower proposal that would pass in Mountain View might not get the green light a mile away in Palo Alto.



    I will point out that some of these European countries have similar concentrations of heavily populated urban areas and lightly populated rural areas as the USA. That's why I used Sweden as an example.



    It's easier to make apt comparisons to other European countries. Right across a border you get very different plans and coverage.



    There seems to be some positional goods desire at play. If one country has x product or service at a cheaper price then everyone else much be raping the customer by the different amount. It simply doesn't work that way.
  • Reply 73 of 82
    Not a big deal.



    Virgin Mobile is a prepaid value brand (at least in the USA). The typical user wouldn't be approaching anywhere near the 2.5GB limit on a regular monthly basis.
  • Reply 74 of 82
    boeyc15boeyc15 Posts: 986member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cameronj View Post


    I've told everyone I know - either get an iOS5 iPhone or don't text me, ever.



    Is this AT&Ts response?
  • Reply 75 of 82
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,039member
    So, I guess I have lots of incentive to drop my unlimited $30 a month plan that I'm grandfathered into, hmmm?



    All they've done here is gotten things to the point where they can now charge the same rate for limited data (3GB) that they used to for unlimited data. Oh, and their network sucks...did anyone mention that?
  • Reply 76 of 82
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sandyf View Post


    Hmmm, you must mean stupid like the wifi only iPad.

    That's the iPad that's captured approximately 60% of the sales versus wifi/3G version.

    Thank goodness there's strategic thinkers at Apple who think differently.

    Try it sometimes, you might find it liberating.



    Lets take a look at your liberating strategic thinking. ATT sold what, some 12 million iPhones last quarter?

    Lets say 6 million of those chose a wifi only model, so at $30 per phone times 6 million, ATT misses out on $180 million in revenue per month, and $540 million a quarter, and over $3 billion a year. You strategic thinking would only liberate ATT of cash, lots and lots of it. As far as the iPad goes, they're not subsidized so any data plan s person purchases is pure gravy for the carriers.
  • Reply 77 of 82
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheShepherd View Post


    What's the answer to this problem of the high price for data in the U.S.? Is there any way to protest?



    Force everyone to pay for their phones at an unsubsidized price. One of the reasons the data plans are so much is to help cover the massive subsidy of the phones. You pay AT&T $200 for a contract phone, and they still pay Apple $600 or thereabouts. It takes about 10 - 12 months to make that money back, then the rest of your contract is a lot of profit. I wish there was a way to get a cheaper contract if you did pay the full retail price of the phone. You could, of course, ask that Apple reduce the price on their phones, but we all know that won't happen.
  • Reply 78 of 82
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Freshmaker View Post


    Force everyone to pay for their phones at an unsubsidized price. One of the reasons the data plans are so much is to help cover the massive subsidy of the phones. You pay AT&T $200 for a contract phone, and they still pay Apple $600 or thereabouts. It takes about 10 - 12 months to make that money back, then the rest of your contract is a lot of profit. I wish there was a way to get a cheaper contract if you did pay the full retail price of the phone. You could, of course, ask that Apple reduce the price on their phones, but we all know that won't happen.



    I wish all the carriers had two plan options though, one price for buying a subsidized phone and another price for buying your own phone and not being on contract. That is exactly why they want to keep plans high to make back their subsidies.



    T-Mobile used to and possibly still offers that option. I believe they offer $49 a month if you buy your own phone for unlimited everything, though they throttle after 2GB. I wish other carriers would offer that as well with much reduced prices for bringing your own phone.
  • Reply 79 of 82
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cameronj View Post


    I've told everyone I know - either get an iOS5 iPhone or don't text me, ever.



    You could get them all to start using WhatsApp messenger. I use it with friends/family that do not have iOS5 devices. Works pretty well.
  • Reply 80 of 82
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sandyf View Post


    Think 79 million baby boomers beginning to retire.

    Think fixed budget.

    Think wifi in most homes, hotels, Starbucks & other hotspots.



    Now think an iPhone that is wifi only and doesn't require a data plan (like the iPad option).

    Now think ATT being the first to market.

    Think they might be able to gain market share (and sell monthly data plans on an as need basis)?

    Ya' think?

    Nahh...to renegade, to crazy.



    YEAH! Why don't carriers give us a $450 subsidy on an iPod Touch???!?!? Idiots.
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