News by Dan Seifert on Tuesday September 27, 2011.
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Addressing an audience of reporters at the GigaOm Mobilize conference yesterday, Sprint CTO Stephen Bye confirmed that the carrier intends to keep unlimited data plans, despite their high cost to the carrier and the fact that Sprint's competitors are transitioning to tiered data offerings.
Bye said that the biggest hurdle with providing unlimited data plans is keeping the cost down. There's clearly a cost to support unlimited," conceded Bye, but he added that not every subscriber consumes as much data as a heavy user."There's a challenge for all engineers to work on how we get the cost structure down," he continued.
He did point out that keeping unlimited data plans saves Sprint on the hidden costs of customer care and support that come with enacting tiered data plans. Bye's message was simple, Sprint customers want free phones, simple plans, and unlimited data, and the carrier is committed to providing that for them.
However, with strong rumors that Sprint will be carrying the iPhone next month, the carrier may not be able to support unlimited data plans for long. Both AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which already carry the iPhone, have switched to tiered data plans, and there is a good chance that Sprint will have to as well should Apple's flagship land on its network. [via CNET]
Dan is MobileBurn.com's Editor-in-Chief. Based in Poughkeepsie in New York, Dan can be found on Twitter as @DCSeifert.