T-Mobile rolls out new tiered data pricing, offers tethering

Putting the rumors to rest, T-Mobile USA will offer a tiered data pricing structure this holiday season as well as a tethering option for smartphone customers.

The carrier is offering, for a limited time, a 200 MB data plan in addition to its existing $30 plan for unlimited data. The 200 MB plan will cost $10 per month with a two-year contract or $15 per month without a contract. T-Mobile will keep its $30 plan for unlimited data. A T-Mobile spokeswoman said that the $10 plan is promotional and that the $15 plan will still be available once the $10 plan is no longer available. The $15 plan will be available for both contract and non-contract customers. 

Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) last week launched a promotional data plan offering 150 MB of data for $15 per month, in addition to its existing $30 per month for unlimited data offering.

Additionally, T-Mobile is launching a tethering option for smartphone customers. Customers must buy the $30 data plan and a $15 per month add-on to turn their smartphone into a wireless modem.

T-Mobile is also starting to market its growing HSPA+ network as the country's "largest 4G network," according to the blog TMoNews, a move that may draw the ire of competitors like Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S), Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) and AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T). A T-Mobile spokeswoman declined to comment on the reported marketing campaign.

The nation's No. 4 operator, which badly lagged its larger competitors in initial 3G deployments, has been steadily adding HSPA+ markets this year. The company plans to cover 100 markets and 200 million POPs with HSPA+ by year-end.

For more:
- see this release
- see this TMoNews post

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