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T-Mobile Updates Smartphone Data Plans

T-Mobile has updated their smartphone data plan tiers, as well as some of their voice plans.  We'll address the voice plans in another post, but it is worth noting that T-Mobile now has more data tiers to choose from than actual voice only plans.  We believe this is a first for the industry, and reflective of the growing importance of data to a carrier's bottom line --- both from a revenue and capacity perspective.

Until today, T-Mobile had two smartphone data plans, a 200 MB for $10 option, and an unlimited for $30 plan.   They've now expanded that to 4 options:

  • 200 MB for $10
  • 2 GB for $20
  • 5 GB for $30
  • 10 GB for $60

Interestingly, there is no charge for additional data on any of these plans.   Instead, T-Mobile will reduce (or throttle) the data speed, until the end of the billing cycle, to any customer once the allowance is exceeded.     We're not sure how slow downloads become in this situation, but suspect that the experience won't be pleasant --- otherwise most people would just stick to the minimum $10 plan.    Our data calculator can help you figure out which T-Mobile data plan is right for you, and compare that option to those offered by AT&T, Sprint and Verizon Wireless.

In reviewing the tiers, T-Mobile has undercut AT&T by $5 at the 200 MB and 2 GB tiers.  Neither Sprint nor Verizon have those tiers.   5 GB for $30 is competitive with Sprint and Verizon and less expensive than AT&T.   Only a very small percentage of customers currently exceed 5 GB.  While Sprint and Verizon say their data plans are unlimited, they reserve the right to throttle speeds for customers who consume too much, although "too much" isn't really defined.    T-Mobile thus becomes the first carrier to explicitly create a plan for these heaviest of users.