Audio-only stream below

Folks are all riled up over Verizon's new plans, which go into effect on June 28. We get a head start on the complaints. (Note: It's an audio-only show this week. No video.)

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Reader comments

Android Central 99: Verizon a go-go

5 Comments

Great podcast as always, but a a couple things.

1) Buying unsubsidized phones is a great idea, if manufacturers released LTE versions of their phones unlocked and without the bloatware. Buy the GS3 unsubsidized still comes locked and full of AT&T bloat. Sure I can root and remove some of the unnecessary apps, but it still forces me to go through AT&T or Verizon or whoever to get the phone. I had considered switching to Verizon for the better data network, since I don't use the phone side much, but this has removed that option. I will stick with AT&T and buy a subsidized phone (might as well take the savings since $200 + $325 cancellation if I decide to leave is still cheaper than $550).
2) The biggest issues I have with the new Shared plans is that they suck for pretty much anyone that doesn't have 3 accounts. I use 2GB of data a month consistently, about 700 texts, and 50-100 minutes so unlimited data and text is pretty much worthless for me. The fact they want to charge you $20 more a month for 2GB less data just for the ability to share it is ridiculous. The "bonus" of getting tethering for no extra charge is BS in itself in that there shouldn't be an extra charge to use a built in feature on your phone if you are already paying for a metered. Data is data and if I pay for X GB's then I should be able to use them anyway I want, but alas that is an old rant that doesn't need to overly pollute this comment.

Anyway, had they started the data plans at the current $30 or even $40 and 3GB of data I think people would have accepted this a lot more. You can't charge more and give less and expect people to be happy with it or at least more accepting.

3) You make a valid point that networks cost money. There is no doubt about that, but it's not like Verizon is not making a damn good profit with their current plans. I also agree that companies have every right to make a profit as well, but I am sick and tired of seeing the mentality of milking the customer for every dime just because they can. At one point in time in history companies actually believed that providing a great customer experience at a reasonable price was priority one in their business model. A happy customer brought profits. Paying dividends to the stock holder was 4th on the priority list of a company. Sadly those days are long gone.

People really need to vote with their wallets here and continue to complain when companies do this. The power of social media and networking can accomplish amazing things these days as was seen with Netflix. I know I personally have cancelled my data plan on my Xoom just because I refuse to give Verizon any money anymore.

I agree that we all expected that this was going to eventually happen, but I wish Verizon could be more reasonable. We're used to paying $30 for grandfathered unlimited data, so I agree with mfriedman79 that the base price needs to be lower, even if it's just only for the next two years. Heck, their current non unlimited data model is $30 for 2GB and $80 for 10GB, so the share model is out of whack.

Now the point of the new Share Everything plan is suppose to help people with multiple lines in their family plans right? So I'm going to focus on that and the costs of having a family plan, because I'm their target audience for this new pricing model.

Doing the math, here's what it comes down to for me.

I have three smart phones and one basic phone. No Wi-Fi Hotspot. We have a combined monthly total of 8-9GB of data that we use among those three smart phones. 700 shared talk minutes, and individual messaging plans that adds up to $20 ($10 + $5 + $5 + $0). I have two work discounts that gives me $10 back. My total monthly bill with my grandfathered contract is about $200 with fees/tax.
With the new share everything plan, that's $120 for three smart phones, $30 for one basic phone, and $90 for 8GB of data (I would rather go for the 10GB). My new total would be $240 or $248 with fees/tax. So I'm definitely paying more monthly.

So does this actually help my family save money?

So $48 in 24 months comes down to $1152 extra that I will have to pay with the shared everything plan. To keep my unlimited plan, I'll have to buy full priced phones that are about $650-$750 each, and if I use the 32GB model of the Galaxy S III as the example, then that's about $700 (with sales tax). So at minimum I'm already thinking that two of the smart phones in my family will be upgraded, and if it's for two Galaxy S III phones, then that's an additional $1400 full priced or $540 subsidized.

Continuing the math, it comes down to these results.

If I keep my unlimited plan and get two Galaxy S III phones, then my full total after two years would be $6200.
If I go with the Share Everything 8GB plan and get two subsidized Galaxy S III phones, then my full total after two years would be $6492.

Now let's add some variables here, and take a look at the differences.

If I consider three Galaxy S III phones instead, then it'll be $6900 unlimited vs $6762 share everything 8GB. Wait what? Share Everything saved me money here? However if I go with the 10GB share everything plan (which is what I actually would go for), then two years with three subsidized Galaxy S III phones comes down to $7002, so unlimited wins again.

Keep in mind that there's always a high chance that three smart phones in my family plan would eventually pass 10GB/mo as the years go by. With that $15 surcharge fee, unlimited would definitely win out in the end there when you compare between the two.

Either way, I'm paying more than what I'm getting right now. My current contract is my grandfathered Unlimited plan, with 3 subsidized smart phones, 1 subsidized basic phone, with a total of $5665/24months. I'm still 15 months into this contract and the pricing that I'm going to expect by my upgrade month (5 months to go) is already well pass $1000 more than what I currently have now. Things always seem to get more expensive.

Phil is right folks. Get a calculator and do the math. It's fascinating to see how much you actually spend on these things at least.

VERY well laid out.
This is exactly why we won't go to Verizon. It is also how Sprint can manage to hang on because people will start to exit Verizon when they want to upgrade because Verizon will continue to inch up prices all the while saying it is "better for the customer".

I use about 6 gb a month on my Verizon unlimited data plan. It costs $30.00 a month. Mostly I stream radio stations using the Tunein app as I work at a repetitious job. I will strive to keep my plan as is with my Thunderbolt for as long as possible. I may buy an off contract phone to continue for as long as possible.
I wonder how many shares of Verizon I'd need to own to have the dividends pay for my phone plan?