Verizon recently unveiled their new shared data plans and it appears that in the long run, the Verizon shared data plan will end up being more costly to consumers. They are allegedly giving customers time to make up their minds.
Here are the details. Basically unlimited talk and text is included in all package of the Verizon shared data plan. Where they intend to make their money, and vastly overcharge the consumer, is data usage.
The new prices for the Verizon shared data plans charge $10 for 1 Gig of shared data. In itself, that doesn’t seem too bad. That translates to $50 for 5 gigs and $100 for 10 GBs of data on the Verizon shared data plan. And it includes data access for many toys including, smart phones, tablets, modems and phones.
Here’s where they get you – access fees. They charge a fee depending on what type of device you use on the Verizon shared data plan. It costs $40 for smart phones, $30 for feature phones, $20 for mobile hotspots and modems and $10 for laptops.
So let’s say you have a family of 3 with 2 smart phones, 1 feature phone and 2 of the family members have laptops and they want 5 gigs of data. The monthly cost on the Verizon shared data plan would be:
$50 for the 5 gigs
$80 for the smart phones
$30 for the feature phone
$20 for the 2 laptops
That would be 190 before taxes for a little over 3 gigs of data per person on the Verizon shared data plan. If the family opted for 1 gig on the Verizon shared data plan, which would not be enough btw for most, the monthly price would drop to $150 before taxes.
One reason I do not like the Verizon shared data plan or any shared data plan for that matter is because now you also have to keep track of your usage and the others on your plan or face even more charges!
What really irks me is that each time there is an upheaval about cell phone data plans, the carriers all get together and say that only a very small percentage of people use a lot of data. If that is true, why revamp you entire price offerings?
For the record, I’ve been with all of the carriers and I really got sick and tired of being over charged for cell phone usage.
I’ve been with T-Mobile for quite a few years now and am very pleased with their service and their offerings. I switched off of their loyalty plan to their value plan and have a monthly bill of $145 a month before taxes and corporate discount for 4 phones. It is less expensive that the Verizon shared data plan for comparable features. On the T-Mobile family value plan we have 2 iPhones, 1 BlackBerry and 1 feature phone. Here’s the breakdown;
3 phones with unlimited minutes and text
1 phone with 500 unlimited minutes and unlimited text
3 phones with unlimited data – 2 gigs at high speed.
1 phone with 200mb of data.
Now there are drawbacks, the iPhones can’t get 4g, let alone 3g service but hey since the bulk of our data usage is on wifi, it’s a compromise I am willing to make.
I feel that my monthly bills are manageable. In the example mentioned above, the Verizon shared data plan for the family of 3 would run well over $200 for family of 3.
In the T-Mobile example, a subsidized phone is not included. The good things is that means we have the freedom to get the phones we want and it is as easy as swapping out a SIM card. Of course you do have to shop around for the best price.
Will others follow suit and model their new offerings after the Verizon shared data plan. My guess is that AT & T probably will.
For many, I am thinking that the prepaid data plans might be the new wave of the future. Prepaid service used to get such a bad rap but has come a long way in recent years. You can get service with a main provider, via an MVNO, for a much more reasonable price.
If more consumers flee the “big guys” in search of more reasonable and affordable plans, the main operators will be forced to again revamp their offerings.