Audi AG's in-car LTE service, which will be powered by AT&T Mobility's (NYSE:T) network, will start at $99 for 5 GB over the course of six months. The companies will also offer a longer-range plan that they say provides more value, at $499 for 30 GB of data over 30 months.
Audi has been discussing bringing LTE to its cars in North America for months, and in January Audi announced it would team with AT&T to outfit its A3 lines of cars with LTE connectivity. However, the companies had never disclosed pricing until now.
The pricing works out to a little more than $16 per month for each plan, though the 30-month plan obviously comes with more data and a longer timeframe in which drivers can use it. The companies also said that all Audi A3 sedans equipped with the automaker's Audi Connect service will receive a free six-month trial period.
The new data plans are for the all-new 2015 A3 sedan, which debuts this month. Audi said that its previous experience with 3G-enabled Audi Connect owners has shown they prefer either a six-month or a 30-month plan, "which are designed to accommodate the consumer's typical usage." The companies said the plans "are based off typical usage in a vehicle" and that customers can be sent email alerts if they near the data plan limit.
Additionally, starting this summer Audi will become the first car maker to offer an AT&T Mobile Share shared data plan option to AT&T customers who would like to add their vehicle to their existing Mobile Share plan.
Further, Audi said it plans to roll out LTE capability across its entire lineup as new or refreshed models come to market. AT&T's LTE network now covers more than 280 million POPs and the carrier plans to hit 300 million POPs and complete its LTE buildout by mid-year.
Audi announced at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show that it would be working with AT&T despite the fact that the automaker had been working closely with T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) for the past few years to power Audi's Connect service using T-Mobile's HSPA network.
Also in January AT&T also announced it scored a new, multi-year exclusive agreement to "enable current and future Tesla vehicles in North America with high speed wireless connectivity." AT&T is also going to be adding LTE connectivity to vehicles from General Motors and is working with several other automakers as well.
Sprint (NYSE:S), for its part, has a deal with Chrysler to provide connectivity in their vehicles but AT&T has clearly taken the lead in providing connectivity to North American vehicles. AT&T is teaming with Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), Amdocs, Jasper Wireless, Synchronoss and others to create AT&T Drive, a mobile platform for developing LTE connected car services. In addition, the carrier and its partners are launching a 5,000-square foot facility to fine-tune those apps and services.
- see this release
- see this The Verge article
- see this Engadget article
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