The onset of LTE for AT&T may not trigger variable data pricing

The onset of LTE for AT&T may not trigger variable data pricing
Verizon may have a clear path that they're going to follow when it comes to their next generation network build out – which we heard could point to signs of variable data plan pricing that's based on consumption. On the other hand, AT&T is seeing the jump to LTE with a slightly alternative stance surrounding recent issues on potential future data pricing – it seems like the move to LTE may not trigger a move to variable pricing of data service. AT&T Chief Executive Randall Stephenson said, “I don't know what the exact trigger is” – meaning that it's still unclear if they would adopt the views of some of their competitors in moving away from packages that offer unlimited data use. Even if the current pricing structure of data plans remains to be the same when LTE arrives, Stephenson still reiterated support for some of the same views that competitors are adopting with next generation networks going live. There's no doubt that the shift in data services will continue to take precedence as regular voice services continue to fall – this is obviously where carriers will see the most of their growth and revenue. Although most people view usage-based pricing as a good thing, especially when you consider the cost needed to keep the infrastructure running smoothly, it is still viewed as being unpopular here in the US to start making such a drastic move.

source: The Wall Street Journal

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8 Comments

1. artz1986

Posts: 453; Member since: Mar 11, 2009

Of course it's unpopular here in the US, because most kids want something for nothing. Again, I can only see variable pricing being successful if the highest you'll pay is $30 for unlimited and you go down from there. It may not be a total fix for capacity issues, but at least that'll give some customers a reasonable incentive to limit there usage and pay a cheaper price.

3. PhoneWar

Posts: 25; Member since: Mar 11, 2010

Lets face it, most carriers are here to make money not lose it. If they are spending millions to improve their networks then someone has to pay for it. And thats where your Joe Customer comes in. You will foot the bill. It would be nice to think that the cap would be $30 bucks a month. I think it might be closer to $50 a month. This is where the companies get you though. They bundle these packages and give you things you may not need or want to save maybe say $10 bucks a month in a bundled package. Either way they have ya. you need them as much as they need you. Ask yourself, "Am I ready to give up my cell phone and plan?" Sure, switch to a different carrier, purchase a new phone and all the other things needed. Either way. YOU PAY!! www.cellphonewars.blogspot.com www.hubpages.com/hub/sprint-saves-you-money/

2. Scoooter

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 13, 2010

There is no way the ceiling is going to be $30. Especially with that greedy Verizon.

4. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

yea, that "greedy" verizon that is footing the bill to launch a new technology called LTE (that VZWs money helped create through its parent company Vodaphone) while its most expencive, so you the "non greedy" customer can get it this year instead of 3 -5 years from now when the tech is cheaper. Whats greedy is ATT IS waiting another 2-4 years to launch LTE which means they WILL build it out cheaper than VZW, but i garuntee they WILL charge you the same as VZW. Ugh.. Liberals.. Right now the cap is about $60 for 5gigs of service. I doubt its going down when LTE comes out.. Id be more worried about it going UP by 10 or 20 when LTE initially launches... for LTE service. Once LTE is built out, it would be interesting to see if they have 2 different tiers.. Like a cheap "budget tier" for 20-40 bux that runs only on 3g and the "high end" tier that can run LTE as well as 3g which id assume would be 50-80ish.

5. cansler

Posts: 136; Member since: Oct 07, 2009

So it's now considered greedy to exercise patience and save some money to build a network that could cost billions now but millions later. Do you like to save money when you can? I know I do. So if I have to wait to purchase something I really want, because I know the prices are coming down, instead of paying thru the nose to be the first with it, is OK with me. And yes, they will charge the same, if not a little less. It is called competitive pricing. All companies do it. If you are willing to pay it, they will charge it. The minute we all stop paying for it, the prices will come down. You think it costs a manufacturer $500 - $1000 to MAKE a handset? It probably costs pennies on the dollar. But we all pay no less than $100 for any decent device. We know they make huge profits for it but as consumers, we haven't reached our limits yet.

6. PhoneWar

Posts: 25; Member since: Mar 11, 2010

I agree, its ok to wait to build it out when the cost to build the network is less. I dont agree if they come out charging the same as Verizon charges, then or now. It should cost less since it was built for less. however that leaves the KEY word,,PROFIT. Companies are in business to make money, bottom line. So the fact it costs less to build wont always equate to charging less. I wish it did.

7. cellhead unregistered

The diff is, VZW is a leader...AT&T a follower. AT&T is still waiting to make their whole network 3G while VZW and others are moving forward with 4G...and not just for part of their network, but of the entire coverage area. AT&T should be charging tiered pricing NOW. The ones actually using 3g should pay. The saps paying for 3g and getting shafted with 2g coverage should be (and many are) walking. AT&T will never lead with a follower’s mentality. Go ahead and "wait" for the technology to get cheaper CANSLER. You get what you deserve!

8. verizonsucks

Posts: 8; Member since: Jan 29, 2010

Well for being a leader they only have 2 million more customers. Not a very big variance when both are in or near 80 million subscribers huh? I could see if AT&T only had as many customers a sprint. Then they could be considered a "leader". AT&T is doing the smart thing and letting another company shell out the money to expand, then they will dig in to the profits. Being a leader doesn't always mean being first...

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