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Wednesday, July 18, 2012
At&T Offers Shared Wireless Data Plans


Following in Verizon's footsteps, AT&T said Wednesday that it will introduce wireless plans that let subscribers connect up to 10 phones or other devices.

With new AT&T Mobile Share plans, available in late August, new and existing AT&T's customers can share a single bucket of data across smartphones, tablets, and other compatible devices, plus get unlimited talk and text.

Users can select one of the new shared data plans or choose one of AT&T's existing individual or family plans. Current AT&T customers are not required to switch to the new plans, but can choose to do so without a contract extension. There are no changes to AT&T's device upgrade policy, which means customers eligible to upgrade to AT&T's best device price are not required to switch plans. The new plans will also be available for the company's business customers.

With AT&T Mobile Share plans, users tart by choosing how much data they want each month, then choose up to 10 devices to attach to their shared plan, one of which must be a smartphone. Each plan includes tethering and unlimited domestic calls and texts for smartphones and basic or quick messaging phones. The larger the data bucket you choose, the less you pay per gigabyte and the less you pay for each smartphone added to the shared plan

AT&T's prices will track closely with those of Verizon. One smartphone with 1GB of data will cost $85 per month with AT&T, compared with $90 with Verizon. Two smartphones and a tablet computer with 6GB of shared data will cost $170 on either carrier.

Under the "Mobile Share" plans, AT&T subscribers will pay a monthly fee for one smartphone and choose a bucket of data usage on top of that. Total costs will range from $85 for 1GB per month to $230 for 20GB.

After that, subscribers can add other devices to share that bucket of data, paying an extra monthly fee for each one. A basic, non-smartphone will cost $30 per month and a tablet, such as an iPad, will cost $10. Additional smartphones cost $30 to $45 each, depending on the size of the data plan.

To help its customers track their data usage, AT&T keeps users informed with courtesy alerts as they near their data allowance for the month. Also, AT&T customers can check their usage at anytime online, through the myAT&T mobile app, or by calling *DATA# from their mobile phone.

Each data plan also includes access to more than 30,000 AT&T Wi-Fi Hot Spots at no additional charge.


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