updated 01:50 pm EDT, Mon June 20, 2011
Verizon may have low data caps on tiered data
Verizon's long-hinted at tiered smartphone data plans could go live early next month but potentially with lower expectations than AT&T. A new scoop Monday has plans starting off at 2GB for $30 per month, abandoning unlimited and costing $5 more than AT&T's own price for the same amount. Extra data would have the same prices as it does on tablets and other data devices, Droid-Life heard, starting at $50 a month for 5GB and $80 for 10GB.
Tethering would follow the earlier model and add an extra 2GB for an extra $20 per month. It may be more advantageous for some users since the data would be pooled into a bucket that allowed going past 2GB without running into overage fees. Any overages would cost $10 for each extra gigabyte.
Tablets are poised drop the $20 1GB plan but would mimic the smartphones with the same $30, 2GB plan as on phones. None of the changes would affect those who were on contract or otherwise grandfathered on to an earlier plan, and it's mentioned that existing subscribers might have the option of upgrading devices without being forced out of unlimited data.
The move will conveniently come just as Verizon is launching the Droid 3 and possibly within two months of the next iPhone. The move would leave Sprint as the only major carrier still offering real unlimited data as even T-Mobile has a 'soft' cap where use past a certain limit can be throttled down.
Verizon's lack of distinctions between 3G and 4G caps has also drawn criticism for not reflecting the roughly ten times faster speeds and looser bandwidth constrictions of LTE. [image via Consumer Reports]