& cplSiteName &

Sprint's New Family Plans Double Down on Data

Sarah Thomas
8/18/2014
50%
50%

Sprint introduced new pricing plans on Monday that give customers switching to a family -- not Framily -- plan twice the amount of data AT&T and Verizon offer at a lower price point.

Light Reading broke the news that Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) would be dropping prices this week after new CEO Marcelo Claure shared his strategy for the company in a "town hall" meeting last Thursday. (See Sprint CEO: Price Cuts First, Best Network Next .)

At the time Claure admitted that Sprint's previously launched "Framily" plans were confusing to customers and that the carrier would have to drop prices to make up for its poor network quality. Today's plans accomplish both goals -- they get rid of the Framily name and drop prices, but with more bang for your buck.

For customers that switch between August 22 and September 30, they will get 20GB of data for up to 10 lines for $100 a month. That applies whether they have four lines or 10, and Sprint is also throwing in an additional 2GB per line for up to 10 lines. After September 30, the price will increase to $160 for four lines. Adding a tablet to the plan is an additional $10 per month or $20 for a mobile broadband device.

Source: Sprint
Source: Sprint

The $160 plan from AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) and Verizon Wireless only includes 10GB of shared data. T-Mobile US Inc. does offer a $100 plan, but it only includes 10GB of data and limits a family to four lines. (See Sprint, T-Mobile: The Price War's On.)

Under Framily, Sprint offered a $160 monthly plan for 4GB of data. It didn't confirm if it would stop offering Framily all together, but it's simply calling its new plans "Sprint Family Share Pack," and, for a limited time, is offering to buy out switching families' contracts up to $350 if they sign up for Sprint Easy Pay. The company also appears to be kicking off an "It's a new day for data" campaign that could replace its Framily messaging.

Bill Ho, an analyst with 556 Ventures, thinks the new plans are the right move for Sprint on several levels. First, the $100 price point is easy to understand and easy to compare across carriers. Second, it undercuts AT&T and Verizon on price, while beating T-Mobile on data, demonstrating both price and value. And, third, it encourages switchers to sign up for Sprint Easy Pay, its device installment payment program. AT&T's comparable program, Next, has been a big churn reducer for it. Now, the analyst says, it all comes down to execution. (See AT&T's Next to Shorten Wait for Device Upgrades.)

"There is that call to action: 'It goes until the end of September, so get in now, and if you're worried about leaving, we'll pay your switching fee,'" Ho says. "It'll be interesting to see how they market this call to action and how urgently they push it."

Claure seems to get the urgency, at least. In a release on the new plans, the new Sprint boss promised further bold moves to come. Echoing statements he made last week, he said, "We have more news coming later this week about plans for individuals. We want customers to think twice before choosing another wireless carrier."

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(7)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Phil_Britt
50%
50%
Phil_Britt,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/20/2014 | 10:05:20 AM
Re: bye bye creepy hamster dad
I agree, commercials are creepy and the creative was a little out there.

The new Sprint plan makes sense in light of T-Mobile's recent move, though the question still remains whether such plans can be offered profitably or not. Of course if there's enough compelling data out there that customers continue to incur overages, these could be quite profitable.

That's what the banking industry found with Totally Free Checking and similar offerings. BY offering low fees and no balance limits, it became much easier for people to bounce checks and incur bounced check fees that provided far more revenue than monthly balance fees.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
8/19/2014 | 6:42:15 PM
Re: bye bye creepy hamster dad
They basically just confirmed it as the event in NYC. Innovative but confusing for customers.
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
8/19/2014 | 12:05:14 AM
Re: family time
It isn't called Framily anymore but it's still cornfusing.
DOShea
50%
50%
DOShea,
User Rank: Blogger
8/18/2014 | 9:28:48 PM
Re: bye bye creepy hamster dad
Seems like Sprint is still advertising the Framily plans quite a bit--that hamster is still everywhere. Or should I call him Mr. Frobinson?
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading founder Steve Saunders grills Cisco's Roland Acra on how he's bringing automation to life inside the data center.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
February 26-28, 2018, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA
March 20-22, 2018, Denver Marriott Tech Center
April 4, 2018, The Westin Dallas Downtown, Dallas
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
SmartNICs aren't just about achieving scale. They also have a major impact in reducing CAPEX and OPEX requirements.
Hot Topics
Project AirGig Goes Down to Georgia
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/13/2017
Here's Pai in Your Eye
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 12/11/2017
Verizon's New Fios TV Is No More
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 12/12/2017
Ericsson & Samsung to Supply Verizon With Fixed 5G Gear
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/11/2017
Cloudy With a Chance of Automation: Telecom in 2018
Iain Morris, News Editor, 12/12/2017
Animals with Phones
Don't Fall Asleep on the Job! Click Here
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed