The Deciding Factor Between WiMAX and LTE? Data Plans.


on December 2, 2010   |   7 comments

With Verizon’s LTE launch coming up in just three days, the new talk among 4G aficionados is no longer exclusively about WiMAX vs. LTE. The new concern? Costly data plans.

In a press conference today, Verizon announced that its LTE data plans will run at $50 for 5GB of coverage and $80 for 10GB.  Go over those data caps and you could be charged ten dollars per GB. With Verizon touting LTE’s lightening-fast speeds, one PC Mag tester ate through his 5GB data cab in just 32 minutes. So how can 4G plans function when they are being offered with 3G pricing?  

Engadget offers a comprehensive overview of current 4G data plans, comparing offerings from Verizon, Sprint, Clearwire and others. While there are advantages and disadvantages in terms of coverage and hardware, the disparity in data plan costs is most staggering.

While most reviewers are hesitant to define a clear leader in the data plan race, Sue Marek of Fierce Wireless points out that, for most consumers, $80 for just 10GB–along with the prospect of hefty overage fees–is just too much. With CLEAR offering unlimited data on its WiMAX network for just $45/month, budget-conscious users have a much clearer choice.      

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Kobe Wadsworth Airmaxed December 3, 2010 at 12:28 pm

What good is lightning fast Internet. To help the end user reach the cap faster. I think Verizon will have to come back to earth at some point. And realize that they are going to need to compete,

If consumers start using there new service, and find themselves going over there caps, then the consumer will be dictating what will and will not work with there choice of carriers. LTE should be bringing the cost down for access to the Internet.

So with there plan, they are asking the consumer to have another form of Internet access, for say home use. This is unexceptable, I see Sprint as the choice for consumers to express there non excitement for Verizon. As sprint has built this redundent network with Clear and having set the bar for access to the Internet, and all you can eat plan.

These new smart phones are all you need for Internet access, they can be set up to your tv at home through an hdmi cable. Where the user can watch movies all night, every night, with out the worry of data caps, and provide access to other users with there hotspot readyness. I am speaking of Sprint service, where there is also Clear access
Clear will emerge the winner, or other carriers will have to follow suit, as going faster should not mean, how quick can i reach my data cap. The real game changer here will be the day Clear launches there mobile 4G device. This will play a key role in how carriers decide ther data plans, with out caps.

Michael December 3, 2010 at 3:38 pm

At this moment I have a $50/month Unlimited plan using a Sprint’s 3G/4G dongle or data card. My 3G is capped at 5 Gigs however my 4G is Unlimited. With Sprint/Clearwire already covering 120 million consumers and being able to expand their coverage to 200 million consumers in 2011 I am more inclined to see them set the bar for pricing than any of the other carriers.

What most pundits and officiandos of the Wireless industry don’t give much credance to is Capacity or Spectrum holdings. Currently Clearwire owns approximately 150 Mhz of Wimax spectrum in the 100 most populated cities in America. On the other hand Verizon only has 20 Mhz of LTE its 700 Mhz spectrum in a couple of cities. Upon scrolling down the URL below you will see Clearwires advantages over the likes of Verizon. After perusing this it should become clearer to most of us why Clearwire can afford to provide Unlimited 4G Data without experiencing Data bottlenecks and why the likes of Verizon etc will have to be careful in pricing their 4G since their capacity is limited.

peachin December 3, 2010 at 5:54 pm

Lest we forget Verizon history. The last thing they are interested in is their customer. These are the folks who brought you The Storm 1 a dishonest total disaster conspired with BlackBerry out of Apple fear.
Verizon whose technical representatives might tell you as one did to me – I don’t know, I have an iphone.
They have always lied about their broadband coverage, and prior analog coverage, sans AirTouch – in the Phoenix area. Sprint has experience – they are up and at it! Verizon will do what ever it takes to trap you into their service. They only have a broadband card at this writing – phones not to come out until 2011 sometime. I’m leaving VZ on Jan 1st with a Broandband Card and a Blackberry – can’t wait. I have more than 20 year experience with VZ wireless – not the same company – GREED prevails and honesty is whatever works

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