New Verizon Mobile Plan: Heavy Data Users Save Big

Dennis Faas's picture

Verizon is scrapping its existing phone plans and replacing them with completely new ones. The new options will be much simpler, and could help people who use a lot of data save a good deal of money.

Under the new strategy, people using cellphones rather than smartphones will simply be offered a single $40 per month plan with restrictions on the number of calls and texts.

That suggests Verizon expects the current trend towards upgrading to smartphones will continue, or at least that the company doesn't expect to generate much profit from customers who won't pay for mobile Internet access.

For smartphone owners, Verizon also has just one plan, dubbed 'Share Everything.' It's designed to meet the needs of multiple people living at the same address.

Verizon Plan Pricing Split In Two

With 'Share Everything,' subscribers pay two separate charges. First, they pay a monthly fee for each device using the plan: $40 for smartphones and $30 for ordinary cellphones. Notebook and netbook computers, or USB mobile broadband "dongles," cost $20 per month; tablet devices, $10.

Second, customers pay for data usage: an extra $50 per month for one gigabyte (GB), or $100 per month for 10 GB. This data plan covers the combined data usage of all the devices linked to the account. (Source:

Each phone on 'Share Everything' gets unlimited voice calls and texting, so for the vast majority of Verizon customers, the number of calls or texts they make each month will have no effect on the amount they pay.

Unlimited Data Customers Face Pressure To Choose

Existing Verizon customers can switch to 'Share Everything' or keep their current plans, even after changing phones. However, those currently on unlimited data deals will be able to keep them with a new phone only if they pay its full unsubsidized cost.

This can be as much as $650, so many subscribers will probably not want to take this option.

The logic behind the new plans is simple: Verizon calculates it can easily afford to provide as many calls and texts as customers wish to make. But providing data service involves major costs, especially as connection speeds increase.

Under the new strategy, there will be winners and losers among Verizon customers. For people who live alone and make a lot of calls and texts but don't use much data, the minimum price of $90 per month is unattractive.

However, for households containing several smartphones and other mobile devices, the 'Share Everything' plan could save subscribers a lot of money. (Source:

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