All of a sudden, it seems all the mobile carriers are offering unlimited plans. So, how do they stack up?
When it comes to unlimited data plans on mobile networks, we’ve come full circle. They used to be the norm, but as mobile devices proliferated, carriers started capping data. Ostensibly, this was about managing network usage, but a bigger part of it was obviously optimizing their income. Now, these unlimited data plans are back, albeit with more catches than ever before. It makes it difficult to answer the question: “whose plan is the best?” What we can do is take a look at the details of each carrier’s unlimited plan, so at least you can answer the question: “whose plan is best for me?”
Before we get into the nuts and bolts, let’s talk about how “unlimited” is defined in the modern world. Technically, the word means “without limits,” which makes a lot of sense. In the mobile scene, however, it means anything but. Limits are everywhere in these new unlimited plans. Most carriers throttle your speed once you’ve used a certain amount of data in a month. Some place constraints on video quality. And some place speed caps on certain types of traffic—like gaming or music. Make no mistake about it: these plans are anything but “unlimited.”
Still, these plans do free you from worrying about overage charges. At the end of the month, if you’re always running out of data and are willing to deal with a few kinks here and there, then they’re all you’ve got. At least there’s an option now, anyway.
With that, it’s time to take a closer look.
While we typically think of the big four carriers for packages like this—Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon. These four carriers offer post-paid plans, where you pay at the end of each month for services that you’ve used that month. There are also smaller carriers getting in on the unlimited train—like Boost Mobile, MetroPCS, and Cricket Wireless. These carriers offer pre-paid plans, where you pay ahead of time and then services you use get billed against what you’ve paid in.
We’re going to talk about all seven of those carriers here, and each offers something a little different than the others. So buckle up, because there’s going to be a lot to take in.Read More...
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