they can get a subsidized one?
If you don't mind being on one of the 2GB($30),5($50) or 10GB($80) line-based data packages. No way to keep unlimited and upgrade on a new 2 yr contract though.
To keep your unlimited plan, you cannot sign a new contract. So if you need/want a new phone, you have to buy it somewhere else or pay full retail.
So its the old" Nothing will change, it will remain excactly the same.......EXCEPT" There goes Johnny's shoes.
Well if Johnny wants to save his shoes. He can steal his mom's upgrade, activate the phone on his line and keep unlimited data. yay loopholes.
But with modern Telecom providers it's not about supply. If it was, there would only be data charges. There would have never been charges for text messages, a medium of communication measured in bytes (hint: there's 100s of thousands to millions of bytes in a typical JPEG), a separate minutes layer for voice, AND tiers for data.
I will say that simplifying things is a step in the right direction, but what I'm really fed up with is that they aren' t charging to meet a profit margin based on what kind of strain the mean user will put on their network overhead. They're charging to make much more than that by charging a massive flat fee for data so they can continue to make what they made when they charged you to not turn off features on your phone, or extra for features like text messaging that actually reduced the strain on their network simply because they became popular.
So here's a thought. Why not figure out what the threshold, the real data-limit is per user before the network implodes and just start throttling customers before they reach that and then charge a compensating premium for people who want to expand their throttle limits. Voice and text should have been unlimited for years now. They just like what they make off those overage fees and now they want to pull off the same trick with data while avoiding increasing criticism for the BS charges from an increasingly better tech-informed user base.
But I am not convinced of this:
"Unlimited data plans are unsustainable"
If that were the reason for the switch to tiered data, why did their attempt at a replacement tiered plan charge more at the lowest tier than what we payed for unlimited? I'm no salesman, but what grandfathered customer was going to jump on that particular deal, which was pulled in how many months? Wouldn't you want to encourage older customers to commit to less data usage by charging less for lower data tiers than they had with unlimited if there was a threat to network integrity?