AT&T has changed the SmartPhone data plans

AT&T has decided to modify their SmartPhone data plans on new contracts. This change does include the iPhone. This change is for only those who have new contracts that started as of June 7th, 2010. Here are the details for the changes.


There are two plans that are similar to the iPad:

The first plan, DataPlus, allows 200MB for $15 per month. This may work for those who are very light users of data while using the iPhone. AT&T claims that 65% of their users fall within this group. After looking at the bills I don’t fall into this category but my brother (we have a family account) does on certain months.

If you go over your 200 MB limit you will be charged $15 for each 200MBs that you go over. This can add up quickly, but there is a work around. The work around includes changing your plan to the DataPro plan and paying the pro-rated amount for the month.

The second plan is called DataPro. This plan gets you 2GB of data for $25 per month. If you exceed this limit you will be charged $10 for each GB over. AT&T states that ‘98% of their users fall into this category’. This I can believe. I looked at my AT&T Bills for the last 18 months and the most I found was 1.6GB which is an anomaly since most months I only used around 800MB at most.

These changes affect both iPhone and iPad users. This means that there is no longer an ‘unlimited’ account for $30 on either device. If you currently have the $29.99 plan you will keep renewing at this rate . If you cancel your plan for any reason you will only be offered the 250MB, $14.99 plan or the 2GB plan for $25.

This isn’t the only thing that will be introduced on June 7th, 2010. AT&T is also offering tethering with the iPhone. This option will not be free, but will be available for $20 per month. The bandwidth caps for the data plans will also include any data transmitted while tethering.

If you were to choose the DataPro Plan and tethering you will be paying $45 for a 2GB Plan. And in order to get the standard 5GB of data that one would get with a standard computer data plan you will be paying $75 per month. After doing some thinking about this that’s effectively $15 dollars for tethering; which isn’t as bad as one would think. If AT&T had wanted to, they could charge $60 for tethering on top of the $25 2GB data package for a total of $85 per month.

One of the items that most may want to keep in mind is that the majority of users will probably not opt to add tethering since this feature may not be useful for some, including myself.

If you’ve been eagerly awaiting tethering since last June, when it was announced that the iPhone supported tethering, then now your chance to tether has arrived. Some claim that AT&T is changing the restrictions to make tethering less appealing or to ease the congestion. Maybe AT&T is just restricting items to make sure that there is bandwidth for video conferencing.

Article Source: AT&T.

Picture Images: AT&T, Apple, and JakobT on flickr.

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