The unlimited data wars between America’s top four wireless carriers is getting even more heated. AT&T was the last wireless carrier to enter the fray earlier this month, and it by far had the most unattractive pricing and features when put head-to-head with the competition. Not only was its pricing not competitive, but AT&T didn’t provide tethering — something that Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile and Sprint give unlimited data customers (in 10GB buckets per month).
AT&T has finally wised up and has announced some adjustments to its unlimited data plans. Kicking things off is Unlimited Plus which gives customers unlimited talk, text, and data along with HD video streaming and 10GB of tethering per month. Once you go past the 10GB threshold, your tethering speeds will be throttled to 128Kbps. This plan starts at $90 per month (for a single line), and AT&T gives you the option to add DirecTV Now video streaming for an additional $10 per month or DirecTV service for an added $25 month.
If you opt for two, three or four lines, pricing escalates to $145, $165 and $185 respectively per month.
AT&T has also introduced a budget-minded Unlimited Choice package, which will only cost you $60 per month. This pricing undercuts T-Mobile, but you should think twice before choosing this option. You are limited to 480p video streaming and data connections are limited to 3Mbps. In addition, you lose all access to mobile hotspot/tethering. Adding two, three, or four lines will up your monthly costs to $115, $135 and $155 respectively.
“We’re excited to bring our customers the unlimited premium entertainment they want, across all of their screens – at home and on the go,” said David Christopher, CMO for the AT&T Entertainment Group. “With our incredible new unlimited plans and great entertainment options for everyone, we’re able to give customers what they’ve been asking for, on their terms.”
This pricing adjustment does make AT&T more competitive with Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint; especially when you take into account the bundle discounts if you opt for DirecTV or DirecTV Now services. On the other hand, we’re not so sure that the Unlimited Choice plan is all that attractive compared to similarly-priced plans from T-Mobile and Sprint, which offer HD video streaming and 10GB of tethering per month.
With that being said, it’s always good to see competition force prices down for customers.