The US 3G Market Heats Up... Finally
After years of waiting, the US wireless market finally has 3G service from more than one service provider. Sprint this week made its 3G launch plans official, announcing EV-DO data service in 34 US markets starting at the end of this month. Coupled with Verizon Wireless' nearly nationwide EV-DO roll out, the country will soon have commercial 3G from more than one carrier in the top markets. This marks the formal arrival of commercial 3G in the US.
Pricing, however, is still too high. While Sprint is offering a lower-cost EV-DO data option for $40 per month, the all-you-can-eat plan will sell for $80 per month, the same price as rival Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess. Verizon Wireless has yet to report any stellar growth numbers for BroadbandAccess. Why? Maybe that's because $80 per month is too much to charge for wireless data, even for business users. Let's hope that carriers soon get over the idea that they can grow a mainstream service by bilking business users and offer 3G at a price consumers and business users are both willing to pay. - Stephen