Verizon is touting a new lineup of 'Unlimited' plans designed to give customers more options to fit their needs, and on the plus side, they are all $5 less expensive than its current lineup. However, confusion still looms for the average user trying to wade through it all. On top of that, this really serves as a reminder that wireless carries like to play fast and loose with the term "unlimited."
According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of unlimited is "lacking any controls." It can also mean "boundless" and "not bounded by exceptions." None of those definitions really apply to Verizon's plans, however, because there are controls.
Let's break it down, shall we? Here are the new Unlimited plans, along with the Just Kids plan, as they pertain to 4G LTE connectivity...
- Get More Unlimited: 75GB premium data, 30GB hotspot, 720p streaming
- Do More Unlimited: 50GB premium data, 15GB hotspot, 480p streaming
- Play More Unlimited: 25GB premium data, 15GB hotspot, 720p streaming
- Start Unlimited: No premium data, no hotspot, 480p streaming
- Just Kids: 5GB cap, no hotsport, 480p streaming
Technically, these all serve up unlimited data. However, there are restrictions. On the Get More, Do More, and Play More plans, once you exceed your premium data allotment, your speeds can be throttled when the network is congested. Same goes for the hotspot data allotments, after which speeds drop to 600Kbps.
Curiously, Verizon has opted to limit streaming to 480p on the Do More plan, while allowing for 720p streaming on the cheaper Play More plan (and the more expensive Get More plan). That seems like a business move designed to encourage Do More subscribers to pony up for the more expensive Get More plan.
"Breaking customers free of the one-size-fits-all family plan was just the beginning; now we’re taking it a step further by giving more flexibility with plans that were designed to fit individual needs," said Angie Klein, vice president of marketing at Verizon. "No matter how you use your phone—whether it’s your entertainment hub, or it’s for managing your life and work, or, if you’re like me, for all of the above—we’ve got a plan for you at a value that can’t be matched with our best-ever rates on Unlimited plans."
Well, that's one way of looking at it. For a limited time, the Get More, Do More, Play More, and Start plans include 5G access (no bandwidth limits, and you get 4K streaming support), provided you own a 5G-capable smartphone, like Samsung's Galaxy S10. This is normally a $10/month add-on. It's not clear how long the promotion lasts, but for now, it's bundled with those plans at no extra cost.
Pricing varies by plan and depending on how many lines you have. Check out this flyer (PDF) for the full details.