AT&T on Friday responded to claims that it throttles the data speeds of smartphone users on tiered data plans once their monthly data allotment has been surpassed. A report from TechSpot on Thursday claimed that AT&T users on tiered data plans were not just being charged overages when their soft caps were exceeded, but also hit with reduced data speeds until their current billing periods ended. An AT&T spokesperson confirmed to BGR via email that this is not the case, however. As BGR reported in July, data-speed throttling applies only to smartphone users with grandfathered unlimited data plans, the spokesperson confirmed. Subscribers with AT&T’s newer tiered data plans are charged overages when they exceed their monthly data allotment in a single billing period, but their throughput is not affected.
Regional carrier C Spire, not T-Mobile, will become the fourth wireless carrier in the United States to offer Apple’s iPhone 4S to its customers. C Spire announced last month that it would soon carry Apple’s latest iPhone, and on Tuesday it announced launch details. The carrier will offer Apple’s 16GB ($199), 32GB ($299) and 64GB ($399) iPhone 4S models beginning November 11th, and plans will cost between $50 and $100 per month. C Spire also joins Sprint in offering unlimited messaging and data services with each iPhone 4S plan in its portfolio, though unlimited data on its two base plans excludes streaming. “As a carrier dedicated to delivering the best personalized wireless experience, we’re proud to offer the amazing new iPhone 4S to our customers,” said C Spire CEO Hu Meena in a statement. “iPhone 4S offers an abundance of new features, and with our Choice Infinite data plans customers can enjoy all of them on our network without having to think about their next bill.” C Spire will also carry Apple’s iPhone 4 for $99 on contract. The carrier’s full press release follows below. More →
Confirming earlier reports, Sprint has revealed that its customers will be able to purchase Apple’s iPhone 4S with Sprint’s unlimited data plans, which start at $69.99 per month. Sprint’s 3G mobile hotspot cap will remain at 5GB, however. Additionally, customers can pre-order the iPhone 4 now or wait until Friday, October 7th to pre-order the new iPhone 4S, which will launch on October 14th. Apple announced the iPhone 4S on Tuesday. It is equipped with a more powerful dual-core Apple A5 processor, an 8-megapixel camera capable of recording 1080p video, and the new Siri voice command system. Read on for the full press release from Sprint. More →
T-Mobile announced on Monday that it has teamed up with Walmart to offer an exclusive $30 monthly prepaid plan that provides unlimited web and text. The new plan will be available online and in more than 2,200 Walmart stores across the United States. “T-Mobile is thrilled to offer this exclusive, affordable service plan, designed specifically with heavy text and data users in mind, to meet the demand for prepaid, which is expected to double by 2015,” said Amy McCune, vice president of national retail, T-Mobile USA. The plan will come with 100 minutes and additional talk time will cost $0.10 per minute. By October 15th, T-Mobile will offer a total of six prepaid handsets, including one with “4G” support. Read on for the full press release from T-Mobile USA. More →
Sprint has once again reaffirmed its commitment to maintaining the availability of its unlimited data plans — until it eliminates them. Speaking at GigaOm’s Mobilize conference in San Francisco on Monday, Sprint chief technology officer Stephen Bye reiterated the carrier’s stance on unlimited data. Bye stated simply that the company will continue to offer unlimited plans as T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon cap and throttle their offerings, but cost is the biggest variable. Read on for more. More →
Sprint on Thursday confirmed that it will soon introduce a data cap tied to its mobile hotspot add-on for smartphone users. Currently, Sprint subscribers with compatible smartphones can pay an extra $29.99 per month for unlimited Wi-Fi tethering, which allows other devices to connect via Wi-Fi in order to utilize a Sprint phone’s 3G or 4G data connection. Beginning October 2nd, the mobile hotspot add-on will be capped at 5GB of data per month. Read on for more. More →
Sprint will offer the iPhone 5 in mid-October and will bundle it with an unlimited data plan, Bloomberg reported on Friday. The carrier hopes its unlimited data plan offering will attract customers away from AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which both cap iPhone data packages. Sprint currently offers all-you-can eat data and voice plans and its Everything Data plan starts out at $69.99 per month with 450 peak minutes. “The advantage of unlimited is, it’s cheaper for the big users,” Bank of Montreal analyst Peter Rhamey explained to Bloomberg, noting that unlimited plans are attractive because “people don’t like bill shock.” Bloomberg’s report is on a par with a recent Wall Street Journal article that also suggested Sprint will begin selling the iPhone 5 in October. In addition, BGR exclusively reported that Best Buy is anticipating selling a Sprint-branded iPhone 5 and that pre-orders should begin soon. More →
AT&T confirmed to BGR that it will soon begin revoking unlimited data plans from jailbroken iPhone users and other smartphone users who utilize unauthorized tethering and mobile hotspot solutions. Following reports from earlier this year, AT&T on Thursday confirmed that it will remove grandfathered unlimited data plans from accounts belonging to users who tether or use unsanctioned mobile hotspot apps without a tethering plan, which is expressly prohibited by AT&T according to its terms and conditions. “Earlier this year, we began sending letters, emails, and text messages to a small number of smartphone customers who use their devices for tethering but aren’t on our required tethering plan. Our goal here is fairness for all of our customers,” an AT&T spokesperson told BGR via email. The letter outlines three choices for customers who had been making use of unauthorized tethering solutions, one of which is “Do nothing and we’ll go ahead and add the tethering plan on their behalf — after the dated noted in their customer notification.” According to earlier reports, offending users will automatically be bumped to AT&T’s more recent tiered data plan, which affords 2GB of smartphone data and 2GB of tethering data for $45 each month compared to AT&T’s old unlimited smartphone data plan, which costs $30 each month but does not include tethering. A new report from 9to5 Mac claims that users will begin losing unlimited plans as soon as August 11th, but AT&T stated that the policy enforcement date varies depending on when the offending subscriber was sent the notification letter. AT&T’s full statement follows below.
T-Mobile on Wednesday announced that it has doubled the theoretical download speed ceiling on its 4G HSPA+ network in 56 new markets. “America’s Largest 4G Network is now faster than ever and continues to deliver a fast and reliable broadband experience in more places than any other carrier,” said T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray in a statement. “Video streaming on T-Mobile’s network has more than tripled over the last year, and consumer demand for access to rich mobile content from anywhere continues to grow. T-Mobile is now supplying more than 170 million Americans with lightning-fast HSPA+ 42 speeds to feed that explosive demand.” For the time being, T-Mobile offers just one device capable of making full use of its new HSPA+ 42 service: the T-Mobile Rocket 3.0 laptop stick. The carrier has confirmed that it will launch its first HSPA+ 42-capable smartphone later this year, but it has provided no additional details or timeline. T-Mobile’s full press release follows below and it includes a list of each newly upgraded 4G market. More →
Verizon has confirmed to FierceWireless that it will move to tiered data plans on July 7th, and the new plans are in line with earlier reports for the most part. If you’re worried about losing your existing unlimited plan, fear not; only new customers will be required to subscribe to one of three new data plans: $30 for 2GB of data per month, $50 for 5GB, or $80 for 10GB. Verizon Wireless will then charge $10 per GB of data past the monthly allotment. Mobile hotspot users will need to start paying a monthly fee starting on July 7th, too. Current 4G hotspot owners will be charged $30 for unlimited use and new customers will have to pay $20 per 2GB of data consumed. The good news? Verizon confirmed that existing customers can upgrade on or after July 7th and still hang on to their unlimited data plans — for now, at least. More →
T-Mobile on Monday introduced several new postpaid and prepaid plans headlined by a variety of throttled unlimited options that cater to a wide range of data-hungry smartphone users. The new individual unlimited plans start at $59.99 for unlimited nationwide voice calling and unlimited text messaging, and then become incrementally more expensive when unlimited data is added. Users can opt for unlimited data with 200MB of “high-speed” data for an extra $10 each month for a total of $69.99, 2GB of high-speed data for a total of $79.99, 5GB of high-speed data for $89.99, or 10GB of high-speed data for $119.99 each month. Once the high-speed data ceiling on one of the aforementioned plans is reached in a single month, data speeds will be reduced significantly — or “throttled” — until a new billing period begins. T-Mobile revamped several other postpaid plans and added two new prepaid options as well, and the details can be found in the press release below or on the carrier’s site. More →
We recently had a chance to speak with Sprint’s Vice President of Product Development, Fared Adib, about Sprint’s upcoming devices, product strategy, and a whole lot more. Interested in Sprint’s thoughts on unlimited versus capped or throttled data? Wondering about Sprint’s plans for product differentiation in 2011 and beyond? Curious to know if Sprint will offer RIM’s new BlackBerry Bold 9930? Hit the break for our full in-depth interview with one of the industry’s driving forces of innovation.
BGR Interview is a series of interviews and conversations with executives, influencers, tastemakers and innovators, covering the mobile and consumer electronics industries. More →
T-Mobile giveth, and T-Mobile taketh away. News coming down from T-Mobile enthusiast blog TmoNews suggests that the apple of AT&T’s eye has decided to cancel its “Even More Plus” plan, which never even got off the ground. T-Mobile intended to launch two promotional unlimited plans this week — Even More and Even More Plus — but the Plus plan was apparently cancelled with no explanation. T-Mobile has informed retail locations that they should not offer the plan to customers even if it has already appeared in their systems. Both the $79.99 Even More and the $59.99 Even More Plus plans offered unlimited voice calling, unlimited messaging and unlimited data — with a 2GB soft cap and throttling thereafter — but Even More was for postpaid subscribers while Even More Plus could be had by month-to-month customers. Alas, T-Mobile subscribers will now need a contract in order to get Even More. More →