In addition to four new handsets, T-Mobile also unveiled new tiered data plans and a new WiFi-sharing and tethering option for select smartphones. Customers with a smartphone will now be able to chose an affordable $10 plan that includes 250MB of data. This $10 plan requires a new two-year contract or a two-year contract extension. A contract-free option that offers 250MB for $15 will also be available. Unlike AT&T which did away with its unlimited plan, T-Mobile will still offer its $30 all-you-can-eat data plan.
T-Mobile is also adding on a WiFi-sharing and tethering option for select smartphones. This add-on requires the $30 unlimited plan and is available for a mere $15 per month. This price points makes this new plan the most affordable option for those who want mobile broadband on both their handset and their devices.
The nation’s #4 wireless carrier undercuts the big three (Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint) with this new $15 WiFi-sharing plan. Verizon offers a mobile broadband tethering option that adds an extra $30 to the $30 unlimited data plan. Smartphones with a mobile hotspot feature like the DROID X can add WiFi-sharing for $20 monthly.
AT&T also offers tethering on select handsets for $45 per month, a price that includes broadband sharing and smartphone data. Though this price matches T-Mobile’s unlimited option, AT&T’s DataPro 2GB with Tethering plan only includes 2GB of data. Sprint also offers a mobile hotspot option for its Android handsets but this feature adds a whopping $30 on top of your base plan.
The only exception that undermines Magenta’s pricing is the Verizon Palm Pre Plus which provides free WiFi-sharing. For $30 a month, you can get unlimited smartphone data with 5GB of mobile hotspot usage. This promotion was added to the handset earlier this year when sales of the battered handset were lagging. It is one the main reasons why I still keep the Palm Pre Plus in my arsenal of handsets and switch to it when I need mobile broadband on my laptop of iPad.
For T-Mobile customers, these new data plans and tethering option will be available in time for the holidays. Anyone going to grab a T-Mobile smartphone with this $15 tethering option as a holiday gift for themselves?