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T-Mobile Mandates New Smartphones with 2 GB Minimum Data Plan

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T-Mobile USA has made some changes to its data plan requirements for smartphone activations requiring that new smartphones activated on or after October 10 be paired with a 2 GB data plan or higher. In the past, T-Mobile USA had offered a 200 MB data plan, but given the ease of consuming vast amounts of data while on the go thanks to T-Mobile’s fast 4G HSPA+ speeds, the carrier may be positioning this move as being more consumer-friendly so that customers won’t be throttled or be subjected to bill shock for overages.

News of T-Mobile’s change in data plan requirements were reported by TmoNews.

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Many of T-Mobile’s plans come with unlimited data. The carrier had recently added a truly unlimited data plan with no overages or throttling, similar to what Sprint is offering. However, in addition to the truly unlimited offering, even the 2 GB or 5 GB data plan on T-Mobile USA’s network is ‘unlimited’ in that users will never get billed any overage charges for going over their set data allowance for the month. Instead, once they hit the set allowance, their speeds will be capped down to a slower 2G EDGE speed, which is akin to speeds of old dial-up connections.

Customers who are already on the 200 MB plan will have nothing to worry about as they’re grandfathered in under the old system.

With studies reporting that many users consume on average of about 1 GB of data per month, 2 GB will give the majority of consumers enough data and a little cushion to stay within the 4G HSPA+ speeds before they get throttled.

While the change may mean that new customers may have to shell out a little money to get on the new minimum 2 GB data plan for smartphones, it’s definitely a nice measure as smartphones today are more capable and users should truly exploit the potential of having access to information anywhere, anytime.

Tech enthusiast in Silicon Valley enjoying the possibilities of ubiquitous connectivity, information sharing, and collaboration enabled by mobile broadband. You can contact Chuong on Twitter @chuongvision or search +chuongvision on Google+.

1 Comment

  1. John Sembrot (@TechsavvyRealtr)

    10/19/2012 at 10:32 am

    I have had data plans and smart phones from the first day they were offered. While considering the option of going to a flip phone and tablet option T-Mobile informed me I could not downgrade. The Data Package was required for my contract, regardless of the phone I was using! If I did not buy a smart phone I would still have to maintain the data fees. I am mainly upset that they did not clearly disclose this to me when signing the contract. I felt like I had made a > $1500 purchase without even knowing it. These Telco’s make too much money. We complain about Wall Street having captured Congress, Well they learned the road from AT&T and the like.

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