Questions, answers about Verizon's new phone plans
By The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) -
Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest
cellphone company, is dropping nearly all of its phone plans in favor of
pricing schemes that encourage consumers to connect their non-phone
devices, like tablets and PCs, to Verizon's network.
The new plans will become
available on June 28, and reflect Verizon's desire to keep growing now
that nearly every American already has a phone. The plans let families
and other subscribers share a monthly data allowance over up to 10 devices.
Some questions and answers about Verizon Wireless' new Share Everything plans, which go into effect June 28.
Q: Will Verizon convert me to a new plan, or can I keep my old plan?
A: Verizon won't switch you
over to the new plan unless you ask. You can keep your old plan, even
if you trade up to a new phone after that date and extend your contract.
But for new customers, Share Everything will be the only alternative,
with a few exceptions, starting June 28.
Q: What type of customer should move to the new plan?
A: If you already have
unlimited calling and texting plans, the new plans are likely to save
you money, especially if you have a family plan. If you have a tablet,
the new pricing scheme could be a good idea too. Even if your tablet
doesn't have a cellular modem, you may be able to take advantage of the
plan, because it lets you create a "mobile hotspot" with your smartphone, so you can go online with your Wi-Fi-only tablet.
Q: What if I have an "unlimited data" plan? Can I keep it?
A: Yes, you can. But -and
there's a big "but" here- Verizon will no longer let you move the plan
to a new phone after June 28, unless you pay the full, unsubsidized
price for it. For most smartphones that will add hundreds of dollars to
the price. A subsidized Verizon iPhone 4s costs $200. The price you'll
pay if you keep your unlimited plan: $650. (Verizon stopped signing up
new customer for unlimited a year ago)
Q: I have a phone and tablet, but they're on different carriers. Can this plan work for me?
A: Probably not. The plan
encourages you to use only Verizon-compatible devices. But if you have a
Verizon smartphone and an AT&T iPad, you could cancel the AT&T
service and use the hotspot mode mentioned above. It's just not as
convenient has having direct cellular access on the iPad.
Q: I don't need a fancy data plan. I just want a regular phone, with no frills. Are the calling-only plans going away?
A: Almost. There will be
only one plan for basic phones. It costs $40 per month and gives you 700
minutes of calling. Texting and data will cost extra. For this type of
phone, there are cheaper, no-contract alternatives from many companies.
Q: I'm single and I just
want a smartphone, that's it. The cheapest Shared Everything plan looks
pretty expensive at $90 per month, and that's with just 1 gigabyte of
data. Is there no alternative?
A: There's one cheaper plan, intended for first-time smartphone buyers. It gives you unlimited calling and texting, and just 300 megabytes of data per month. If you're frugal with data usage, that will get you by. It costs $80 per month.
Q: Is this the future? Are all phone plans going to be this way?
A: For its part, AT&T
is likely to go in this direction as well. It makes sense for phone
companies to meter only the data usage. They can easily provide
unlimited texting and calling, but data usage stresses their network.
They also want to get as many new, non-phone devices as possible on
their networks, and, for customers, shared data plans are cheaper than
putting each device on a new plan.
That said, there's likely to be a wide variety of phone plans in the industry.
Q: How do data plans work in other countries?
A: They mostly limit data
usage per device, the model Verizon is moving away from. Contract terms
are often more flexible overseas, however, and more phones and Internet
devices are pay-as-you-go rather than bound by contract.
2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not
be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Friday, May 17 2013 7:16 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:16:53 GMT
One person has died in a crash near Harrisonville, MO, Thursday evening. The crash happened on Missouri Highway 7 and Walker Road. It involved a car and a tractor-trailer. Harrisonville is in Cass County.More >
Savannah Nash celebrated her 16th birthday last week. She died Thursday when her car slammed into a semi while she was texting during her first time driving by herself.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 2:54 AM EDT2013-05-18 06:54:01 GMT
An Oregon girl abducted as a baby and missing for 18 years finally emerged in Dallas this week when her mother turned herself in to authorities, according to the Polk County Sheriff's Department. More >
An Oregon girl abducted as a baby and missing for 18 years finally emerged in Dallas this week when her mother turned herself in to authorities, according to the Polk County Sheriff's Department.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 11:00 PM EDT2013-05-18 03:00:58 GMT
A masked man barged into a local marijuana dispensary and robbed two people at gunpoint. It happened at 10:45 a.m. Thursday morning at the Relief Medical Marijuana Facility on Southeast 122nd near Glisan.More >
An armed robber held a gun to the back of a woman's head and threatened to shoot her if he didn't get marijuana. More >
Wednesday, May 15 2013 2:57 PM EDT2013-05-15 18:57:11 GMT
The old saying goes, "If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen." Perhaps, this applies to Kitchen Nightmares, as well. An Arizona bakery was featured on Friday's episode of the Gordon RamseyMore >
The old saying goes, "If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen." Perhaps, this applies to Kitchen Nightmares, as well.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 4:23 PM EDT2013-05-17 20:23:49 GMT
A SWAT team serving a search warrant in Vancouver arrested two men on charges of rape and unlawful imprisonment.Sergio Leon, 21, and Aaron-Blair Davey, 24, were taken into custody in connection with aMore >
Two men accused of holding a woman down and raping her were arrested in a raid at a Vancouver home yesterday. More >
Friday, May 17 2013 4:10 PM EDT2013-05-17 20:10:42 GMT
SWAT teams arrested three men accused of pointing a loaded gun at a black man at a Vancouver bar and threatening to kill him. Brent Luyster, 32, and his brother Robert Luyster, 31, were both taken intoMore >
SWAT teams arrested three men accused of pointing a loaded gun at a man at a Vancouver bar and threatening to kill him because of his race.More >
One of Alaska's most restless volcanoes has shot an ash cloud 15,000 feet into the air in an ongoing eruption that has drawn attention from a nearby community but isn't expected to threaten air traffic.More >
One of Alaska's most restless volcanoes shot an ash cloud 15,000 feet into the air Friday in an ongoing eruption that is visible for miles when the weather allows.More >