It is not just Verizon Wireless subscribers getting some bit of unpleasant news today. For those currently subscribing to AT&T, know that the wireless carrier has decided to increase the prices of its legacy unlimited data plans by $5 a month. This development was first reported by DSL Reports, and comes after news of an increase of $5 a month that the major US mobile operator had implemented for that plan about eleven months ago. With this increase, the total monthly pricing of AT&T’s old unlimited data plan is now at $40 per month.
Like Verizon Wireless’, this move by the second biggest wireless carrier in the United States is viewed by many as a sign that the industry leaders are veering away from unlimited data options and instead opt for offering metered data plans. As explained by AT&T by way of an official press statement, its subscribers can do well to avail of the carrier’s Mobile Share Advantage plans and AT&T Unlimited Plan offer inclusions that legacy unlimited data plans simply can not match. The mobile operator added that subscribers of legacy unlimited plans can still choose to remain in their plans -- they just have to start paying $5 more than the usual, beginning in March of this year.
It was around seven years ago that AT&T had started getting rid of its unlimited data plan offering to new subscribers. What the company did back then was replace it with a tiered pricing model. It actually made some sense at that time. In 2010, the wireless carrier was the only seller of Apple’s iPhone in the United States, and owners of the device were rapidly increasing, with demand for data growing to levels AT&T could not always handle.
Back in August of last year, AT&T had launched new options that start at a price of $30 a month, offering a gigabyte of data per month. For those subscribers willing to pay $40 a month, they get 3 gigabytes of data, while those wanting even more data can choose to avail of the $100 a month option, which costs $135 a month. About a year ago, the wireless carrier had resurrected its unlimited data plans, but with certain conditions -- it was only made available to subscribers of its DirecTV offering. Those who did avail of the plan got to enjoy unlimited voice calls, text messaging, and data use for $100 per month for the first line of service, and then $40 a month for each extra line added, while the fourth line is given free of charge.
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