Pricing Out Verizon's Shared Data Move

3:45 PM -- Verizon Wireless 's decision to ditch separate phone plans in favor of unlimited voice and data buckets later this month could be costly compared to some current individual and legacy family plans.

The operator has dropped tiered voice and messaging options in favor of unlimited voice and messaging that is covered by $40 per month per smartphone on a shared plan, or $20 per laptop, or $10 per tablet.

What this means is that getting basic voice and messaging and 2GB of data per device for an iPhone and an iPad 2 will start out $10 more expensive under a plan that runs $120 per month, according to Verizon's shared plan calculator.

As Roger Chen at CNET notes, you can currently buy a smartphone plan from Verizon that offers 450 voice minutes, 1,000 text messages, and 2GB of data for $80 a month. Add an iPad 2 with a 2GB plan for $30 a month and that takes you to $110, which is $10 less than the new shared plan.

Light Reading Mobile readers, meanwhile, are finding that the plan is not conducive to low-volume users, because the access costs have gone up for smartphones and tablets.

It appears that the users that could really be spanked by the new plans, however, are the Verizon subscribers that are on the old unlimited data plans that will be gone as these new shared plans arrive on June 28.

A reader writes that "my current cost for [three] phones is $30 for access charge (10*3 lines) plus $90 for unlimited data (30*3) for a total of $120." Under the new deal, Verizon's calculator recommends a 6GB, $200-a-month package.

Let us know how these new plans could affect you.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:30:22 PM
re: Pricing Out Verizon's Shared Data Move

One sign: I was trying to explain the shared data concept to a couple of relatively tech savvy friends last night and they just didn't get it...

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