Understanding the new iPhone data rate plans

So there’s already a bunch of people belly-aching about AT&T dropping their unlimited plan from iPhones. First thing to consider is that if you have an unlimited plan now and want to keep it, you can. So shut up. Okay, so now for the real numbers on this. The current $30/month plan is being replaced by two limited data plans. First is a $25/mo. plan that allows for 2 Gigabytes of data transfer. This is a LOT of data as far as a smartphone is concerned. AT&T claims that it will cover over 98% of it’s users easily with this. So there’s $60 in annual savings to 98% of users. The second plan is a much lower data amount. A paltry 200MB for $15 monthly. But let’s think about our data usage. In my particular case (an avid geek to boot), I am rarely using AT&T’s network for my data. Almost everywhere I go there is a WiFi hotspot that is open or mine. So I actually use very little data. I looked at the online reports for my account available here: https://www.att.com/view/analytics/process.do  (You’ll need to be logged in for that link to be any good). So yeah, I looked at those reports and found that I have never in two years gone over 100MB, much less 200. So that’s $180 off my annual bill. AT&T claims that this plan will cover about 65% of their users. Do yourself a favor and go check out your data usage on the AT&T site or use the AT&T app for the iPhone to check your regular consumption. You may be surprised to see that you use far less than you though and that the new plans are in fact beneficial to the strong majority of users. That other two percent need to think about their usage a bit. Seriously? 2 gigs on a 3G speed network that drops out here and there? How aggravating. Go find a Starbucks or a McDonalds and finish off that download tout de suite.

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