Confirmed: U.S. Cellular adds more data to shared data buckets

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U.S. Cellular (NYSE:USM) confirmed it is adding more data to its shared data plan buckets for the same prices, the latest in a wave of pricing tweaks from larger carriers.

The changes go into effect today for new and existing customers. Under the changes, the company's $40 plan with 300 MB of data will now include 1 GB, the $50 plan goes from 1 GB of data to 2 GB, and the $60 plan rises from 2 GB to 3 GB. U.S. Cellular is also offering a new $15/300 MB plan and a $60 single-line plan with 1 GB of data.

The changes were first reported by the blog Droid Life.

U.S. Cellular spokeswoman Katie Frey told FierceWireless that customers on the lower-end shared data plans "will get more data for the same price, and the plans still include unlimited voice and messaging plus tethering."

"With this new structure, people looking for a basic phone can choose a Shared Data plan starting at $45 per month," she said. "For a limited time, single smartphone customers can get 1 GB of data with unlimited voice and messaging for $60 per month. We are excited to provide more data to our current customers as well as the $60 promotional plan."

U.S. Cellular introduced shared data plans last fall. The company's postpaid average revenue per user was $53.53 in the fourth quarter, down from $54.64 in the third quarter and $54.56 in the year-ago period.

Recently the Tier 1 carriers have been a on merry-go-round of price changes. For example, T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) recently said its "Simple Choice" customers will now be able to get unlimited voice, texting and 1 GB of LTE data before throttling for $50 per month, up from a previous allotment of 500 MB. Customers can now get 3 GB of LTE data, including tethering, for an additional $10 per month per line (up from 2.5 GB previously), or 5 GB for an extra $20 per month per line.

Separately, Verizon Wireless' (NYSE:VZ) "More Everything" shared data plan customers (who get unlimited voice and texting) also now get more data. The $40 per month/500 MB plan increased to 1 GB of data, while the $50/1 GB plan increased to 2 GB, and the $60/2 GB plan jumped to 3 GB of data.

For more:
- see this Droid Life post
- see this CNET article

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