AT&T follows Verizon's lead, introduces pricier plans, more data and removes overage charges

Mike Mozart/Flickr

AT&T took a page from Verizon’s playbook, raising the price of its wireless plans but offering more data per plan.

The new plans, which go into effect this Sunday, start at $30 per month for 1 GB of data – up from $20 a month for 300 MB of data. A plan with 3 GB of data is offered at $40 per month, and 30 GB of data is $135 per month. Each plan has additional “access charges.”

The move mirrors the plans Verizon introduced in June, with both carriers raising overall prices but lowering the cost per megabyte. Like Verizon, AT&T dropped overage fees with its new plans, but – unlike some of Verizon’s plans – AT&T doesn’t charge for the feature.

Verizon’s new Small plan offers 2 GB for $35 per month, up from $30 per month for 1 GB. And Verizon's XX-Large plan now offers 24 GB per month for $110, up from 18 GB for $100 per month. Safety Mode is available for free on Verizon's XL or XXL data plans, but customers on the carrier's S, M and L plans must pay an extra $5 per month to receive the service.

AT&T also simplified its access charges for smartphones and feature phones. Smartphone customers without an annual contract will now pay $20 per handset per month for Mobile Share Advantage and $15 per line per month on its Mobile Share Advantage for Business plan. Access charges for users with feature phones on any plan will be $20 per line per month.

The new plans from both AT&T and Verizon highlight the struggles U.S. carriers face to better monetize their users in a smartphone market where growth has slowed to a crawl. With fewer users buying smartphones for the first time, operators continue to try to poach users from their competitors as they work to increase revenue per user.

For more:
- see AT&T’s press release

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