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Verizon To Offer iPhone Users Unlimited Data

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the gambling-to-show-up-a-rival dept.

Wireless Networking 327

Hugh Pickens writes "The WSJ reports that Verizon Wireless, the country's largest wireless carrier, is confident enough in its network that it will offer unlimited data-use plans when it starts selling the iPhone around the end of this month, a person familiar with the matter says. Such plans would provide a key means of distinguishing its service from rival AT&T Inc., which limits how much Internet data its customers may use each month. Verizon has a lot at stake as it starts to carry the iPhone, which it is expected to announce Tuesday at an event in New York City. Verizon, more than any other US carrier, has built its reputation on its network quality, and any stumble in handling iPhone traffic will call into question Verizon's major selling point. On the other hand, if it does handle the iPhone well, then AT&T will have a harder time arguing it didn't mismanage its own network. Anthony J. Melone, Verizon's chief technology officer, says the company has invested heavily in its 3G network to handle surging smartphone traffic, including nine million Android subscribers, up from none a year earlier.'"

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327 comments

Competition again? (3, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830178)

Perhaps that means they will compete for business and we consumers will win?

I know, fat chance but we can still wish.. right?

Re:Competition again? (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830206)

Here's to hoping. I'm an Android guy myself, but I always welcome more competition! That is, of course, assuming this is what Verizon has planned for tomorrow. If it isn't, the outpouring of douchebaggery online will be quite entertaining :)

In "competition", consumers always lose. (-1, Flamebait)

mozumder (178398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830360)

The ultimate goal of "competition" is to achieve monopoly status, by eliminating competitors. That is what "competition" means.

Once you eliminate your competitors, you can do whatever you want to the market.

Why would you want consumers to suffer through competition?

Note that any bit of protected intellectual property, such as copyrights and patents, would also be a time-limited government-granted monopoly. They are the only items that should be allowed monopoly status, not commodity services like communications technologies.

Commodity services should be government-controlled, since government is better able to handle monopolies than private enterprises.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (4, Insightful)

Korin43 (881732) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830528)

The ultimate goal of "competition" is to achieve monopoly status, by eliminating competitors. That is what "competition" means.

Once you eliminate your competitors, you can do whatever you want to the market.

Why would you want consumers to suffer through competition?

Assuming we're not talking about assasination, the way to "eliminate competitors" in a free market is to have a better product. If your product is so good that no one else can compete, then who cares? If you start trying to abuse your monopoly position, new competition will come.

Of course, there's always the modern definition of "competition", which means only compete with a couple other companies, and use your influence in the government to make competition either illegal (cell phone carriers with government issued monopolies, computer hardware companies with patents) or impossible (Walmart and Conagra with subsidies). I don't see how more government control would help that.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (1)

intangible (252848) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830796)

Unfortunately for limited resources like radio frequencies or wires underground or hung above a road, there's not any alternatives to "regulated monopolies" except for government constructed and maintained shared infrastructure which brings about its own set of problems (worse or better?)....

There's not a perfect solution yet... maybe someday something like subspace communications, UWB or the (impossible) quantum entanglement communication will allow a true competitive environment for communication.

Electricity, gas lines, sewer, and water all have the same limitations. (Unless you can construct an off-the-grid building).

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (4, Insightful)

Helix_Sky (1151027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830834)

Assuming we're not talking about assasination, the way to "eliminate competitors" in a free market is to have a better product.

  • Or undercut your competition by temporarily subsidizing your product with money made from other sources.
  • Or undercut your competition by reducing production costs by dumping your hazardous wastes, neglecting the safety of your workers, or off-shoring to countries that don't enforce standards.
  • Or simply buy up your competition to eliminate competitors.

I don't see how more government control would help that.

That is what government regulation is for. It is to ensure that the best product wins under its own merits and that all costs are taken into account.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (1, Insightful)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830994)

That is what government regulation is for. It is to ensure that the best product wins under its own merits and that all costs are taken into account.

Government regulations do not have that effect. Not even close. Quite the opposite, really.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830896)

Wow, this post is a bundle of contradictions.

Assuming we're not talking about assasination, the way to "eliminate competitors" in a free market is to have a better product. If your product is so good that no one else can compete, then who cares?

Yes!

If you start trying to abuse your monopoly position, new competition will come.

What? No! Abused monopoly/oligopoly positions allow the incumbent to exclude new competitors! As an example:

Of course, there's always the modern definition of "competition", which means only compete with a couple other companies, and use your influence in the government to make competition either illegal (cell phone carriers with government issued monopolies, computer hardware companies with patents) or impossible (Walmart and Conagra with subsidies).

Oligopoly, almost as bad as monopoly... The abuses these companies clearly perpetrate should, by your own argument, lead to new competitors. Oh, whoops, contradiction!

I don't see how more government control would help that.

Ummm... by preventing monopoly abuses? Instead of kowtowing to business interests *cough* *cough* < insert opponents political party name >

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (1)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830966)

I don't think WalMart receives subsidies.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831048)

Are you being sarcastic? They get millions of dollars of tax free status for up to 10 years while their competitors still pay regular taxes.

In many cases as soon as the tax free status clears and they have to pay taxes,they close.

Re:In "competition", consumers always lose. (2)

angus77 (1520151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830698)

The ultimate goal of "competition" is to achieve monopoly status, by eliminating competitors. That is what "competition" means.

If you're a jock, that's what it means. In the context of economics, that's not what it means. At least, not what it's supposed to mean.

Re:Competition again? (4, Insightful)

srothroc (733160) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830368)

Verizon offering unlimited data is, in fact, one of the effects of competition. In order to compete with AT&T and offer a compelling argument for going with Verizon, they have given you -- the potential customer -- unlimited data. That's a win in my book.

Re:Competition again? (1)

jappleng (1805148) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830456)

Unfortunately this doesn't include Android or WP7 users, which is a strange arrangement to allow only iphones / ipads to access unlimited data. I will admit that Verizon's reliability is five star quality and their customer service is unlike their competitors, however I would gladly take less of each and put it towards affordability. Verizon as of late has been doing some shady business moves and I'm not liking it one bit. When I called them yesterday about their unlimited data package, they said they only had 10gb for $80 and I had no idea how they were selling their products with that. As long as people pay their premium price, they will continue charging it at that rate.

Re:Competition again? (4, Informative)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830578)

Verizon offers unlimited data on all smartphones. They do not offer it on tethering packages. This has been confirmed over and over again on the Android sites.

Re:Competition again? (1)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830804)

Which is, frankly, stupid. Either they're willing to offer genuinely unlimited data transfer (within the inherent capabilities of the network), in which case it doesn't matter which device is using it, or they are only willing to offer 'x' GB per month, but they slap on an "unlimited" sticker and hope that the provided hardware keeps you within their unwritten limits. If they aren't willing to offer unlimited data transfer, they shouldn't be allowed to advertise unlimited data transfer, simple as that.

Wishful thinking, I know, but it'd be nice if they were just up-front and treated their customers with a little respect, for once.

Re:Competition again? (1)

MagicM (85041) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830932)

They offer "unlimited data" just like restaurants offer "free refills". Restaurants expect you to refill a certain number of times given the size of your cup and the duration of your visit. If you start funneling your beverage into a keg you've brought in with you, someone will probably ask you to leave.

Both cases seem fair to me.

Re:Competition again? (2)

pitchpipe (708843) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830496)

Perhaps that means they will compete for business and we consumers will win?

Let's see: Lucifer, Beelzebub, and Legion are competing for your business, and you think that you might win? MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA

Re:Competition again? (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830952)

Let's see: Lucifer, Beelzebub, and Legion are competing for your business, and you think that you might win? MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA

I want the most torture for my dollar!

Maybe... (5, Funny)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830184)

Maybe it's time for me to actually get a new phone. This bag's pretty heavy.

Re:Maybe... (2, Insightful)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830238)

iPhone has been "Coming to Verizon" for almost 3 years now. Always according to a "person close to the matter".

Maybe they'll bundle it with Duke Nukem.

Re:Maybe... (3, Funny)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830276)

iPhone has been "Coming to Verizon" for almost 3 years now.

You need only wait until this time tomorrow to determine if your comment was omniscience in action or merely another nattering nabob of negativism.

Re:Maybe... (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830854)

+1 Agnew reference

Re:Maybe... (3, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830278)

I think it's rather like predicting earthquakes. If each week a different person says there's going to be a big one, statistically speaking, eventually one of them will be right. :-)

Re:Maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830508)

I think it's rather like predicting earthquakes. If each week a different person says there's going to be a big one, statistically speaking, eventually one of them will be right. :-)

That is not what "statistically speaking" means.

Re:Maybe... (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831068)

I think it's rather like predicting earthquakes. If each week a different person says there's going to be a big one, statistically speaking, eventually one of them will be right. :-)

A stopped analog clock is correct more often than the "iPhone on Verizon" rumors, though I think it's likely correct this time.

But wait for it - if the one that is announced is NOT an LTE phone, then let the teeth gnashing begin! :)

Meanwhile, the replacement ROM for my EVO on Sprint gives me muuuuch better battery life. (I'm using Fresh ROM.) I can wait for a nice dual-core replacement for my EVO, especially since I get no discount until June, anyway. We'll see who has the best fast data network with the best plan pricing and best phone by then. I've no problems switching to Verizon or T-Mobile if they step up their game in their respective weakspots. But something along the lines of the Motorola Atrix on something other than AT&T would be welcomed. The Bionic isn't quite up to the same specs. Plus, well, Motorola.

Re:Maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830300)

The iPhone was first released three years ago. We also knew it would be exclusive to AT&T in the US for at least two of those years. At most, it has been "coming to Verizon" for one year.

Really, really bad timing on your part (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830378)

Every other time it's been clear it's a rumor. This time it's obvious it's no rumor, there are leaks from techs testing and the news is all over the place. It's like saying that there's not going to be an eclipse just because there wasn't one all last year. New data is at hand...

But the really funny thing about your post is, you make it in the same year Duke Nukem Forever is actually set to release for real...

Re:Really, really bad timing on your part (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830828)

It was confirmed when Apple ordered millions of CDMA chipsets, it's been the worst kept secret in Apple's history.

Re:Maybe... (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830466)

iPhone has been "Coming to Verizon" for almost 3 years now. Always according to a "person close to the matter".

Maybe they'll bundle it with Duke Nukem.

There's a difference between bloggers and the Wall Street Journal. Blogs will post any damn thing, the WSJ generally shows more restraint.

Re:Maybe... (1)

monkyyy (1901940) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830748)

on the other hand wsj can be bribed; bloggers not so much

Re:Maybe... (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830850)

Yes, because we know that when you sign up for your first wordpress account, you do it with the solemn oath that you will only blog for truth & justice, and with the moral backbone of a Saint.

Re:Maybe... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831082)

There's a difference between bloggers and the Wall Street Journal. They both have more credibility than Fox News.

Re:Maybe... (1)

wesleyjconnor (1955870) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831062)

and it comes with linux on the desktop

Re:Maybe... (3, Funny)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830248)

Not me. I'm waiting for the Commodore 64 Phone! That, or the Sinclair ZX81 Phone. THOSE will be game changers, for sure!

Re:Maybe... (2)

ekgringo (693136) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830574)

Who needs the internet when you have cassette tape!

--Proud former Timex/Sinclair 1000, Timex/Sinclair 2068, and Spectrum+ owner.

Re:Maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830342)

Maybe it's time for me to actually get a new phone. This bag's pretty heavy.

Don't you mean your European satchel?

Is that Unlimited.. (2)

Goose In Orbit (199293) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830194)

...or "unlimited" (subject to "fair use")?

Re:Is that Unlimited.. (1)

Fjandr (66656) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830538)

The latter. No company planning to stay in business long offers actual unlimited access to a resource that they only have in limited supply. Granted, it's a very high limit, but there are limits nonetheless.

Re:Is that Unlimited.. (1)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830888)

...according to the phone company. True, they have a different vocabulary in PhoneLand. You are not a customer; you are a subscriber. 'Unlimited' probably means 2GB per month until the FCC forces them to give you 10GB. Even if that is not true, which is probably is not, 'unlimited' does not mean 'forever'.

Not Sure I'm Buying It (1, Insightful)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830218)

It's a fun rumor, but I'm not sure I believe it.

Verizon certainly does not want a bunch of data-sucking iPhones on their network unless they can make money off of them. So, yes, I could believe that Verizon my offer an unlimited plan for $20 more than what their 2MB/month plan costs. But I tend to doubt they're going to be offering unlimited for the same cost as AT&T 2MB/month plan.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (4, Insightful)

Amorymeltzer (1213818) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830324)

If Verizon can offer an unlimited (or, you know, unlimited until you read the fine print) data plan that's sturdy and reliable and fast, it will be an enormous windfall for them. Verizon is not only huge, but generally accepted as providing better service, especially in the northeast. Verizon wants money and to be bigger than AT&T - offering unlimited data gets more people to switch to or pick up Verizon service with an iPhone. If they aren't priced very competitive with AT&T, they'll minimize that enormous surge, which they don't want. Make less per person, get more people - totally worth it.

The true winners are, of course, Apple. Either way, millions of people will be buying iPhones for the first and probably not the last time. Toss in the iPad 2 and Lion to round out the corners and 2011 is looking up for Apple. Competition amongst telecoms is better for consumers, but it's better for producers as well.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830336)

I would hate to be on that 2MB plan. Download one JPEG that is a little two big and you are paying overage charges...

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

angus77 (1520151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830726)

I suppose if the jpeg is of underage subjects, you may be subject to charges of being "overage"...

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

ToolJobs (1974154) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830356)

Tell that to Verizon's business managers who want AT&T's business.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (3, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830398)

It's a fun rumor, but I'm not sure I believe it.

Verizon certainly does not want a bunch of data-sucking iPhones on their network unless they can make money off of them.

No mention of cost yet, but they have already been carrying the heavy load of Android phones for some time. They use just as much data (if not more) than an iPhone.

Quote Verizon CEO:

"Whether they are iPhones or Droids, they are smartphones," Verizon Chief Executive Ivan G. Seidenberg said in a mid-November interview. "Regardless of the mix, we are prepared to carry more data."

I would wager it will be around 30 bucks, just like AT&T's unlimited plan was before they stopped selling it (although many are grandfathered into the unlimited).

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830404)

Yup, tanstaafl. It's still true. On the other hand, I'm guessing there are only a small number of people who would like an iphone but don't want to deal with AT&T. A better option for Verizon might be to offer unlimited data for a limited time or something as a loss leader to get people to switch over from AT&T, or get people who are on the fence about an iphone to take the plunge. I'm in that last category myself: I'm toying with the idea of getting a new phone and having played with other people's Androids and iphones, I think one of these will be fun to have. That said, I'm not big on the $70/mo. for unlimited that AT&T, $55/mo. is a little more reasonable for what I anticipate my usage habits to be, but I'll wait to see how the Verizon thingy shakes out before I make a decision one way or the other.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1, Interesting)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830866)

If you can live with Sprint's network their Virgin Mobile division offers unlimited data and text and 300 voice minutes a month for $25 including taxes and fees. Of course they only have one of the crappier Android phones and a low end Blackberry on offer and no BYOD =(

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (3, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830408)

I've got an unlimited data plan through Verizon for my Blackberry.

Yes, it's expensive -- good thing my employer pays for it.

What I'm skeptical of is not that they'll offer an unlimited data plan, but of what kind of throttling they do.

I've noticed that I'm SEVERELY throttled when I do a big download.

Simple web surfing? No problem. Email? Not bad. Last month I downloaded a 17 Mb file and it took 2 hours... in the middle of the night when network usage HAD to be low. Maybe I just had a really bad connection.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830420)

Sorry, 17 MB not Mb.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830532)

Any idea what kind of file size causes the throttling to kick in? I'm surprised it's something as low as tens of MBs. My phone's browser has a little transfer monitor in the corner and most "basic" non-mobile pages clock in at over 1MB, and sometimes up to 5 or 6MB. A throttle set that low could easily interfere with general browsing.

For comparison, that handset came from Three UK, whose plan offers "unlimited" data with a 1GB "fair use" allowance. The false advertising irks me, but speeds tend to be good, and it managed to sustain four laptops over a WiFi tether for a few days when the proper net connection went down.

Re:Not Sure I'm Buying It (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830602)

You had a bad connection. I routinely download podcasts of 50+ MB with occasional 200MB+ without any slowdown on Verizon.

Um, what? (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830684)

Verizon certainly does not want a bunch of data-sucking iPhones on their network unless they can make money off of them. So, yes, I could believe that Verizon my offer an unlimited plan for $20 more than what their 2MB/month plan costs. But I tend to doubt they're going to be offering unlimited for the same cost as AT&T 2MB/month plan.

AT&T's plans are 200MB/month and 2GB/month, there is no 2MB/month plan, which would be silly. AT&T's 2GB/month plan is $5/month less than their unlimited plan (which you can't get new, but some people still have.) Since Verizon currently has an unlimited smartphone data plan, and its the same $30/month that AT&T's is -- $5 more than AT&T's 2GB/month plan and $15 more than AT&T's 200MB/month plan -- I'd expect that if they offer the iPhone and keep the unlimited plan available the price will stay right there at $30/month.

Re:Um, what? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831040)

AT&T's 3G in most places is slightly faster than dialup. They might as well reinstate unlimited, as their network is so borked most places you cant get any speed.

Yeah, right. (5, Insightful)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830234)

I call bullshit. We should all know the marketing definition of "unlimited" by now.

Re:Yeah, right. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830330)

I call bullshit. We should all know the marketing definition of "unlimited" by now.

kinda like when hosting companies
promote "unlimited storage, unlimed bandwidth"

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830552)

I call bullshit. We should all know the marketing definition of

kinda like when hosting companies promote "unlimed bandwidth"

I don't know... I've never had unlimed bandwidth... I might fall for that. Mmmmm.... just a hint of lime...

Re:Yeah, right. (2)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830372)

How many people will actually use an "unlimited" amount of data every month (i.e. - more than the 2GB offered for $5 less on AT&T, for example), if you can't tether?

And, if you tether without approval and manage to use 2+ GB, how quickly do you think Verizon will point to their TOS and hand you an extra monthly tethering fee?

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830586)

Things like Skype, uploading videos to YouTube, download videos from video websites, Netflix, streaming internet radio. All these come to my mind for the need of more then 2GB. I would love unlimited internet just for internet radio streaming but I the best I can get is a 2GB for too much money. (I had unlimited for 2 months because they wanted me to get hooked on the online functions. I think with the streaming radio I went through like 400MB a day at work. Was streaming Last.fm to my Android phone when I was doing that.)

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830720)

Fair enough, I suppose, though that's like 10 hours of music a day. Unless you were streaming at a pretty high data rate, and based on my experience with the iPhones, their fidelity really doesn't justify much quality need. Still, I can see music streaming if you don't have wifi. I can use WiFi at work (or *gasp* my desktop) to stream Pandora, or even tap into the 25GB of my own music.

Unless I'm stuck on public transportation for an extended period of time (which admittedly doesn't exist near me), I'm very unlikely to ever stream more than the occasional 1-3 minute youtube clip on my 3.5" screen. It's a horrible way to watch TV.

I can't imagine I'd want to really do any video work worth my iPhone and need to upload it in HD, except perhaps as a technology demo. They make much better tools for that.

As AT&T found when they looked at usage, the vast majority of people rarely crack the 100MB barrier on their iPhones. Unlimited is a bit of a niche market.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830876)

Not everyone is able to hook up to a work wifi network, or have access to a desktop to stream music. For many people these are just not an option leaving streaming completely up to their cellphone plan. As for the data rate, I don't know what the rate is on Last.fm for my phone, didn't check.

As for your 25GB of your music, sometimes people want the radio, because its something a group of people can agree to, not just yourself.

And the 100MB barrier, as more people find out the more neat things they can do online, the more they will want to use them. Its like the internet on your computer. 5 years ago, many people wouldn't have ever broke the 3-5GB barrier. Now, many people break that in a few days without even knowing it thanks to YouTube, Netflix, Steam, ect...

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830934)

As AT&T found when they looked at usage, the vast majority of people rarely crack the 100MB barrier on their iPhones. Unlimited is a bit of a niche market.

Except for the fact that study after study has shown that people will pay more for the blanket of unlimited even when it's not in their economic interest to do so. It's better to soft cap the top .5% and jack the price up by $5/month than to offer the scaled down plan and piss people off the once every couple years they go over the ceiling.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

kindbud (90044) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830816)

How many people will actually use an "unlimited" amount of data every month (i.e. - more than the 2GB offered for $5 less on AT&T, for example), if you can't tether?

I have a grandfathered Verizon mobile broadband account with no monthly data limit, and I routinely exceed 15 Gb/mo just listening to Pandora and other internet streaming music services. I listen to these services on my Droid Incredible now, too. I am sure I'd exceed the 2 Gb/mo in the first week of each billing period if that was my cap.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831008)

Everyone that buys a Windows 7 phone. Just sitting on the table uses 20gb a month.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830384)

I call bullshit. We should all know the marketing definition of "unlimited" by now.

There's maxing out your total possible bitstream 24x7x30.4 days per month with your phone seeding torrents, and then there's not having to worry if you should watch that video link or not because of getting smacked with overage charges. Most users on smartphones feel limited. Hit the 99.5th percentile and call it good. 'Practically unlimited' may be the right terminology, just to keep everybody honest. Sorry, no sympathy for the aforementioned seeders, wireless is a shared resource.

I gave up smartphones a few years ago. I'm waiting for an open device with a data plan like this on LTE to get back in. Sounds like 2011 might be my year.

Re:Yeah, right. (4, Insightful)

rudy_wayne (414635) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830412)

Verizon will offer unlimited data, until they don't want to anymore.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830616)

Verizon will offer unlimited data, until they don't want to anymore.

So, like a month after they start selling the iPhone? (like AT&T did with the iPad)

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

outsider007 (115534) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830460)

Unlimited data is usually somewhere between unlimited text messages and unlimited breadsticks.

Re:Yeah, right. (4, Informative)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830518)

I call bullshit. We should all know the marketing definition of "unlimited" by now.

yeah, but it works from the tech perspective. You can cram 30-40x the cellular connections into the same chunk of frequency with CDMA that you can with GSM. I know that data is different than voice but the fact is that CDMA is a significantly more efficient use of spectrum than GSM-- it's one of the reasons you never have dropped calls with Verizon, but do with AT&T: the europeans, in their infinite wisdom, decided with GSM that a cell would be connected to only one tower. With code division multiplexing, other towers can easily listen in and pick up the call if you drop from one tower. GSM can't do that.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830988)

Dude, this iphone will spend most of it's time talking to a GSM radio, aka LTE not to the EVDO CDMA network.

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831076)

It's an iPhone 4. It does not have 4G. You can call it "4G" if you like and be like At&T if it makes you happy :) it made their marketing department happy.

Re:Yeah, right. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830922)

Agreed. And likely in this case, unlimited means they won't stop you from downloading that 50MB app to your phone over 3G like AT&T does.... conveniently because it means there's a chance they'll be able to stick it you at the end of the month when you break the 2GB cap they really have in place.

Verizon didn't just dump their "unlimited" package across the board for tiered data only to turn around and reintroduce it.

The real truth (4, Funny)

microbee (682094) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830274)

Verizon is going to announce a new Windows phone tomorrow, the Kin(g) of Kins.

- by someone close to the matter

Your move AT&T (2)

U8MyData (1281010) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830292)

I'm not qualified to have much of an opinion about these things, but I will be watching with the utmost curiosity where AT&T will wind up now that they have lost their exclusivity with the Apple crowd. Any predictions out there? Methinks it looks bad for AT&T...

Re:Your move AT&T (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830468)

I don't know. I'm sure they'll lose people in the markets where there service is wildly oversubscribed. That will balance the traffic better, leading to better service for AT&T people who stay, and clogging more of the Verizon cells.

Neither has much magic in their plans. $15 gets you 150MB(V) or 200MB (ATT) of service - which is more than most people will ever use in a month. Low minute packages are about the same price. Phones will probably cost the same (though V's can't be resold overseas, so resale might be slightly less). I don't see much differentiation unless you live in an area with shitty service from one or the other.

Still, I'm all for a wicked price war on plans and data services!

Re:Your move AT&T (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830996)

150MB is more than most use a in month?

How?

Re:Your move AT&T (1)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830478)

I'm not qualified to have much of an opinion about these things.

Well, that really set's you apart from the rest of the folks here!

Horray (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830312)

And that is why you still will have a crippled smartphone. I'd prefer a 20gb plan and then be able to use it for what i want. What is worse is that people in other countries is still under those stupid limitations like you can't download podcasts or other data over 3G if the filesize are greater than 25 megabytes and Apple does not always allow apps to stream video over wifi.

AT&T is unlimited for most users (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830340)

2GB is actually a huge limit, when you consider that often at home or work phone users are on WiFi anyway. I use my phone all the time and usually hover around the 200 MB limit every month.

Although Verizon's "unlimited" plan might be a nice marketing feature, will it cost more? And will it really be "unlimited", because you know some guy is going to try and push the limit and it seems likely there's really a limit, just not one they advertise...

What would be way more interesting would be making tethering free - AT&T charges $20/month for it (though you can turn it on for just a day here and there and pay a pro-rated rate).

Re:AT&T is unlimited for most users (4, Interesting)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830592)

A "tethering fee" is, to put it bluntly, a stupid concept - if you've been sold a certain allocation of monthly data transfer, you have every right to use that allocation, by phone or by laptop. If your contract states you can use 2GB (or if it states "unlimited", for that matter), but they only wrote the contract in that way because they hoped that the limitations of a handheld device would prevent you from actually using your full entitlement, then they have nobody to blame but themselves if people do start causing problems by having the gall to use up the data they paid for.

Re:AT&T is unlimited for most users (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830734)

2GB is actually a huge limit

Its not a huge limit with tethering (of course, tethering costs extra without increasing the limit.)

Although Verizon's "unlimited" plan might be a nice marketing feature, will it cost more?

The whole thing is that Verizon won't cancel their existing unlimited plan or prevent iPhone users from getting it. The existing plan is $30/month. This is $5/month more than AT&T's 2GB plan and exactly the same as AT&T's unlimited plan (which you can't sign up for anymore, though people who had it at the time of the changeover and haven't dropped down still do.)

Seriously (1)

alvinrod (889928) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830358)

The event is allegedly tomorrow so why can't we wait until tomorrow when it's no longer speculation and actually an established fact?

If I make a blog post claiming that Verizon will offer free blow jobs for new iPhone buyers can I be featured on Slashdot as well?

Re:Seriously (1)

monkyyy (1901940) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830874)

yes

please do so

Unlimited ? (5, Funny)

Pop69 (700500) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830382)

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

The main reason people lose unlimited data (AT& (3, Informative)

Mister Xiado (1606605) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830434)

People frequently drop their iPhone in a mug of beer (HOW?!), or jump in the pool, or some other stupid way of destroying it, then put their SIM card in a basic phone. Then they have a store or customer support remove their unlimited data because oh it's soooo expensive, then expect to get it put back on well after it was announced that the only way to get it back was to never voluntarily remove it. If you already have a smartphone or iPhone unlimited data feature, you are more than welcome to keep it if you upgrade or simply swap phones to another smartphone or iPhone.

If it was removed because someone at Walmart bungled an upgrade or something similar, it can be restored, just don't wait six months to call in about it.

Now, maybe Verizon doesn't know, but some of the heavy abusers of cellular data with iPhones use upwards of 40-50 GB per month. You're not going to use that much data browsing the web, but with a jailbroken iPhone, you can get a 7 to 14 megabit connection shared with a whole network of computers for all of $30 per month... and that is spelled out as abuse of the service in the ToS, which is written in very basic English.

I assume that unlimited data will be revoked again once LTE rolls out, or it will be exclusive to the first iteration of CDMA iPhone.

FYI, the only data services available for the original iPhone are all unlimited data, with varying amounts of SMS message allotments. Wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more.

Re:The main reason people lose unlimited data (AT& (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830878)

My advice is to drink heavily.

Article is worthless (1, Insightful)

0WaitState (231806) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830488)

The article is either crap, paid for by Verizon, or both. AT&T does offer an unlimited data plan for the iphone--that's the plan I have. What AT&T does NOT offer is unlimited data with tethering, where you use your iphone as a data modem for your laptop. The tethering plan is limited to 2 gig a month. If Verizon were to offer tethering with unlimited data that would be ballsy. Yet the word "tether" or "modem" does not even appear in the article.

Re:Article is worthless (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34830594)

They don't offer that plan anymore. You had to have been grandfathered in. There is currently no unlimited iPhone plan through AT&T.

Re:Article is worthless (4, Informative)

cmburns69 (169686) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830618)

AT&T does offer an unlimited data plan for the iphone--that's the plan I have.

AT&T no longer offers the unlimited data plan. Were you to sign up as a new AT&T customer today, you would not be able to choose the unlimited plan.

Re:Article is worthless (1)

jhobbs (659809) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830708)

at&t no longer offers unlimited data plans for NEW iPhone subscribers. They offer "Data Plus" which offers 200MB/mo for $15/mo or "Data Pro" which offers 2GB/mo for $25/mo.

Re:Article is worthless (1)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830750)

As I said further up, that reasoning simply shows their "unlimited" plan for the fraud that it is - all they are really saying by that is that you can have unlimited data if and only if you promise not to actually use it. If they were actually willing to give you "unlimited" data, then it wouldn't matter which device was using it. What they are, in fact, saying is that it's a marketing term only offered because they hope it can't be tested with the hardware provided.

If they think you can't use over 'x' GB per month on an iPhone (a bet they are obviously making, otherwise they wouldn't differentiate iPhone from laptop), set the highest plan cap at 'x' GB (maybe plus 10% just to be sure) and let users do what they damn well please with it. The iPhone users would still get all the data they could eat, and those who want to tether could do so up to the limit that they'd already paid for without overly taxing the network from 'unlimited' use.

If, on the other hand, they actually decided to let you use unlimited data on the iPhone, why the hell couldn't you use that same allocation on your laptop? I'd be tempted to max out the connection 24/7 (only using the phone, of course - wouldn't want to breach their TOS) just on principle, if I had one of those plans.

Re:Article is worthless (1)

BLKMGK (34057) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830942)

They used to and they offered it for the iPad too as I recall. then they revoked it and scaled back to 2Gig as I recall. If you have it then the plan was grandfathered like mine. As a new customer NOW you wouldn't be able to get it. Perhaps Verizon will shame them back into offering it again?

real Unlimited or Unlimited with a big slow down a (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830504)

real Unlimited or Unlimited with a big slow down at 5gb?

Re:real Unlimited or Unlimited with a big slow dow (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830600)

[James Earl Jones] We said it was unlimited. I find your lack of faith is disturbing. [/James Earl Jones]

Re:real Unlimited or Unlimited with a big slow dow (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830744)

real Unlimited or Unlimited with a big slow down at 5gb?

Unlimited with a big slowdown at 5GB for $5 more than AT&T's 2GB plan would still be worth it.

yeah (-1, Redundant)

Ryanrule (1657199) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830564)

I have an iPhone. I will not be buying another.

AT&T claims about calls and internet false! (1, Interesting)

Taelron (1046946) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830572)

AT&T claims they are still better because on their network you can make calls and use the browser at the same time. AT&T claims that you can not do this with CDMA LTE technology like Sprint and Verizon use. This is a bold face lie. I have a Sprint carried Samsung Epic 4g phone and routinely use the web browser while on calls. Since Sprint and Verizon use mostly identical technology, I cannot believe AT&T's claims that Verizon's phone wont be able to do what Sprint phones already can do... AT&T's statements are merely FUD, I know a lot of people already lined up to leave AT&T once the IPhone is available on another carrier, and AT&T knows and is scared of this too.

Re:AT&T claims about calls and internet false! (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830784)

CDMA or the new LTE? I haven't seen an ad which claims it can't be done on LTE, just that it can't be done on their coverage. I don't think it is possible with the current 3G CDMA network which is deployed practically everywhere, but on LTE (which is just select markets) it should be possible.

How long until we learn the secret limits? (3, Insightful)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830656)

How long do you think it will it be before people who have purchased the "unlimited" plan and taken it seriously will receive notices from Verizon saying that their account has been cancelled or disabled due to "excessive" use? And the representatives explaining that they just mean "no stated limit," and that they never dreamed that people would actually download _that_ much, and it is with the saddest and greatest reluctance they have been unwillingly forced to take measures against a few, a very very few evildoers in order to insure the optimum user experience for the vast majority of good Verizon customers, and anyway they never really said it was unlimited because if you scroll 61% of the way down the 150-page online terms and conditions they reserve the right to curtail the usage by any individual in the interests of the greater good of the Verizon network as a whole?

Re:How long until we learn the secret limits? (1)

kindbud (90044) | more than 3 years ago | (#34831024)

How long do you think it will it be before people who have purchased the "unlimited" plan and taken it seriously will receive notices from Verizon saying that their account has been cancelled or disabled due to "excessive" use?

Probably never, that's my guess.


Data Usage
                October November December Average
Data Used(MB) 13674.39 7884.54 10850.83 10803.25
Data Over(MB) 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Overage Cost $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00

Dear AT&T (1, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#34830890)

I'm ready for a new iphone, but you wont sell me one at a discount because you want to make me wait another year.

Guess what, If you want to keep me, in 1 year when I am off contract, You had better offer me a 32Gig iphone 4 for free or discount the service by $40.00 a month or I'm switching to Verizon.

If you guys are going to be 3rd rate service, then I pay far less.

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