News by Andrew Kameka on Thursday December 05, 2013.
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AT&T Mobility is making big changes in the way that it charges customers for mobile data services. Following in the footsteps of fourth-place T-Mobile, AT&T will increase monthly data limits and lower the price of monthly charges for customers who buy a phone without subsidies.
The new Mobile Share Value plans, available beginning December 8, offer customers a chance to lower their monthly bill by $15 to $25 if they do not include a subsidy. Someone who brings his or her phone to AT&T, purchases a device in full, or stays on contract for 24 months, will be eligible for the discount. When a phone has been paid off, the bill automatically lowers unless someone signs up for a new contract.
AT&T has also added a new 8GB tier of data, lowered the price on some of its bigger data buckets, and added an option for AT&T Next customers to upgrade every 18 months and spread the payments over 26 monthly installments. The old plan made users eligible to upgrade every 12 months, but this new secondary option lets customers who don't need to get a new phone that quickly lower their monthly bills and still be able to get a new device before their contract expires.
Mobile Share Value plans are still more expensive than T-Mobile, so price-conscious customers may not be moved by the rate plans. However, consumers who are already subscribed to AT&T or prefer the carrier's coverage and device portfolio may be pleased to see the savings possible when removing a device subsidy from the equation. AT&T will honor existing Mobile Share contracts and only enroll subscribers into a Mobile Share Value plan at the customer's request.
Here's a chart showing the old and new price structure to illustrate how much money an individual customer saves.
|DATA||OLD COST||NEW COST
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.