Verizon Wireless introduced rate plans Monday which provide unlimited LTE data for a monthly price of $80 for one line or $45 per month per line if four or more lines are activated on a single account.
Verizon hasn’t offered unlimited data to new customers since 2011. Observers also note that the change follows a recent shift in the Verizon Wireless management structure that involved the retirement of Verizon CFO Fran Shammo and the installation of Ronan Dunne, the former CEO of British wireless carrier O2, as executive vice president and group president. Explaining, “our network investment and innovation have put us in a great position to meet consumers’ increasing demand,” Dunne told reporters that his company’s goal is to “come to the rescue” of “power users” that are forced to select “an inferior so-called unlimited plan on a discounted carrier” or run the risk of data overage charges.
Unlike rivals that throttle or otherwise reduce the quality of video and gaming applications in an attempt to manage unlimited data consumption, Verizon said it would take no steps that adversely impact the quality of high-speed LTE transmissions unless LTE data consumption exceeds 22 GB per line in a single billing cycle. In such cases, a Verizon spokesman acknowledged that data usage on affected lines (and not on every unlimited data line on a customer’s account) could be served “behind other customers in the event of network congestion.” Verizon also affirmed that the unlimited data offer includes a monthly mobile hotspot allowance of 10 GB per line for tethering data to other devices. Once the 10 GB allowance is used, tethering speeds on affected lines would be reduced to 600 Kbps for the remainder of the billing cycle.