Data only with monthly plans?

Mentor

Data only with monthly plans?

I just got a text from AT&T saying that data packages will only be available with monthly plans starting on 4/18!

Really? Why? (besides the whole wanting more money thing)

So I have to go from paying $25 every 3 months with $5 a month data to at least $25 a month plus data?

Wow, thanks for that.

 

Message 1 of 82 (3,837 Views)
pl1
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

[ Edited ]

frostedj8 wrote:

ATT could really care less if you leave.  I'm sure they would prefer you leave.  They could keep the money that you paid without providing further service.  To ATT we are just deadweight.  Most of us on the pay as you go plan don't really pay much annually for our service, nor should we if we barely use it.  This was why we decided to use ATT pay as you go.  

 

I've been an ATT/Cingular customer for 13 yrs, under contract and prepaid.  This is really the first time that I've really been upset with ATT.  I've been through their poor customer service, their crappy equipment, and overpriced plans.  They give you a 2 week warning about what is to come in a bad text message that explains little, which has everyone wondering if someone hacked ATT and sent out a bogus text message.  No other communication is offered to explain what is happening.  For something this major I would have expected at least 30 days warning and a link to an explanation of what this all means. 

 

The text message should have read:  "We don't need you as an ATT customer, nor do we care what you have to say.  Please leave"


I have never felt so much hate for a company that I've been paying money for as AT&T at this point. They picked the perfect timing to do this (for me personally). It was about a month or two ago that I bought an AT&T branded phone to use on their network. Then, I added $105 pre-paid. Then I bought $25 worth of data. Then, they pull this 2 week crap and when I call, they say, "Oh Well, It Is True", basically Too Bad!

 

So, never say never, because I have been a sucker going back to them before, but I don't EVER plan on using another AT&T product again. Of course, with another Merger or buyout, the way they keep trying to kill their competition, I may have little choice.

 

EDIT:I forgot to add more damage done. So, now I've switched to TMO and bought a new TMO branded phone so I can get 3g/4g, and I'm going to donate my left over funds from AT&T when I'm transferred over to TMO with my new phone.

 

Currently, I am going to start out with the "unlimited txt/data/100talk Walmart plan" for $30/month, the same price TMO is charging for "unlimited txt/50MB Data/250talk".

 

So, I'm going to be spending a lot more money than I WAS, but I'd rather pay someone else after being forced here if I want any data plan.

Message 61 of 82 (2,965 Views)
pl1
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

[ Edited ]

frostedj8 wrote:

They give you a 2 week warning about what is to come in a bad text message that explains little, which has everyone wondering if someone hacked ATT and sent out a bogus text message.  No other communication is offered to explain what is happening.  For something this major I would have expected at least 30 days warning and a link to an explanation of what this all means. 


I understand that the nature of a prepaid phone is that there may not be an address on file, but, I'm sure AT&T could have done the right thing and snail mailed anyone who did have an address on file. Further, it would have been much more professional to send a text indicating a link to a change in terms on their website with at least 6 months notice and/or a Grandfathering clause.

 

I'm the LAST person to want more Government intervention, even though it seems to be necessary. It is a shame that companies can't treat their customers the way they would want to be treated. That being said, I believe this will sort itself within a few months when a bunch of customers vote with their feet. Mark my words, you will see them trying to woo the lost prepaid customers back once they realize the lost revenue about a year from now. 

Message 62 of 82 (2,950 Views)
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I really don't think they care, they know you're either going to stay and pay more money or leave and get them out of providing a service for smart phones at such a low price. I never even got a text message, I had to read about it on an Internet forum.
Message 63 of 82 (2,931 Views)
pl1
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

[ Edited ]

MaxBurn wrote:
I really don't think they care, they know you're either going to stay and pay more money or leave and get them out of providing a service for smart phones at such a low price. I never even got a text message, I had to read about it on an Internet forum.

So, I just made them happy then, I donated my left over $35 via text message and ported my number to GV. I've already got my TMO account set up, so I'm outta here. Just like they want (if what you say is true.)

Message 64 of 82 (2,922 Views)

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I guess if someone is willing to pay $30/month to T-MO, then I don't see why this change is such a big deal.  Those of us who were able to use GoPhone w/data for $8.33/month (or $10.41/month, since many of us started with $25 of data to roll over) are the ones who really got screwed here.

 

I think when my existing GoPhone minutes run out, I'm probably switching to H2O Wireless.  Data is more expensive, but voice is half what AT&T charges.  So, wIth the $130 I spent over the last year with GoPhone, I can get 33minutes voice + 38.9MB data every month (using $100/1yr + three $10 "feature" cards).  That's about the same as I got with my old GoPhone PAYG w/data.

Message 65 of 82 (2,905 Views)
pl1
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

[ Edited ]

millerbrad wrote:

I guess if someone is willing to pay $30/month to T-MO, then I don't see why this change is such a big deal.  Those of us who were able to use GoPhone w/data for $8.33/month (or $10.41/month, since many of us started with $25 of data to roll over) are the ones who really got screwed here.

 

I think when my existing GoPhone minutes run out, I'm probably switching to H2O Wireless.  Data is more expensive, but voice is half what AT&T charges.  So, wIth the $130 I spent over the last year with GoPhone, I can get 33minutes voice + 38.9MB data every month (using $100/1yr + three $10 "feature" cards).  That's about the same as I got with my old GoPhone PAYG w/data.


I here ya. We were forced to go to the $30/mo plan if we wanted data at AT&T. I figure I might as well get unlimited for the same price (plus I had a $25 free starter card). I'm trying it out for a while. My main plan is to go TMO .10/min and switch to the $2/$3/day plan unlimited data on the days I want to use data.

 

Now, I did look at those other plans. AAMOF, I bought two Airvoice Sims. Then I started comparing my data use with the cost per MB, and I realized I would probably use 20MB per week or about 90MB per month @ .33/MB = $30/Mo.

 

Also, before I thought of the Google Voice option, I got nervous with porting my number to places I was not familiar with. Now that I'm porting to GV, my options are unlimited. I can try any of these plans and simply change my forwarding number. I can easily use another service to supplement me.

 

So, because AT&T pulled a fast one on me eliminating a plan I was perfectly happy with, with virtually no notice, I will find someone, anyone else. $30/month is not really an issue for me as much as paying for something I'm not using. As of today, 3 weeks on AT&T's monthly plan, I've used something like 5 minutes of talk. If I use a ton of data at T-Mobile, then I'm getting what I paid for. 

Message 66 of 82 (2,895 Views)
Professor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

Going from $8.33 a month to $30 a month is quite steep for those who use mostly landline phones but use cell phones for backup and for e-mail with occasional google and web use.

It would be great for at&t to offer a low tier, like $10 a month for 100 minutes.
Message 67 of 82 (2,877 Views)
pl1
Mentor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

[ Edited ]

ilikewireless wrote:
Going from $8.33 a month to $30 a month is quite steep for those who use mostly landline phones but use cell phones for backup and for e-mail with occasional google and web use.

It would be great for at&t to offer a low tier, like $10 a month for 100 minutes.

I recall when I first got my cell phone the mimimum plan postpaid was $15 for 30 min and .45/min after. So, it's hard to believe you will ever see that deal. (I know, apples and oranges.)

 

Here's the thing. You CAN live with a 0.10/min plan WITHOUT data in most  cases if you have WIFI available. I had no data plan for a long time when I was on TMO. I had WIFI at home and at work, and I was able to find offline readers that worked well. I would download before I knew I was going to need some news or reading material.

 

AT&T started offering prepaid data a fews years ago and I jumped to them. Now that I've had it when I want, I'm kind of liking it. So, I'm willing to pay for it somewhere. But, I do NOT need it. I can definitely live without it. Based on that, If I cut out data, and If I'm on the TMO plan, once I spend $100, I can spend as little as $25 per year. And to be honest, I probably don't do much more that 250 talk/text minutes, so I could really do just fine rolling over that $100.

 

Then there are additional options like H20, Airvoice, Tru Sim, that could let me add minimal data as another option.

 

But, everytime I do the math on PAYG DATA, it comes out to the same as an unlimited plan for me.

 

So, I think my best option is TMO .10/min and $3/day 4G unlimited on the days I need it. 

 


 

Message 68 of 82 (2,838 Views)
Professor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I wonder why at&t insists in calling its GoPhone plans "Pay-As-You-Go" if only one out of the four (10c/min plan)  is really a PAYG plan? Monthly plans are not PAYG. They had a name for something like that here before: Pick-Your-Plan.

 

Anyway, now that there is no data packages for PAYG, screwing me royally in the process, I now realize that I also have to stop recommending and helping business travelers coming to the U.S. from overseas to use GoPhone as I've done during the last few years. Some of them a recurrent visitors who keep GoPhone lines alive just for the purpose of having access to both voice and data but not too much enough, and frequent enough  to justify one of the monthly plans. I'll have to find a suitable alternative for them too. Same will go with friends and relatives coming to visit. Tsk-tsk Dumb, at&t, really dumb.

 

ps/ Why isn't this thread bumping to the top with new posts?  I've missed several of them and now I have to keep looking trhu the pages to see if there are new posts.

Message 69 of 82 (2,827 Views)
Contributor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I'm on the 10 cents a minute plan and need data for GPS. I guess I will be getting lost a lot more often. Thanks a lot AT&T!  Lets hope I can find free wifi in an emergency.

Message 70 of 82 (2,769 Views)
Highlighted
Tutor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

Well I found out about this yesterday when i went to renew my data on the website, and it told me I couldn't without changing to a monthly plan.

 

Ironically, only one day earlier I got a text message telling my my data was about to expire, and to reply RNW to renew (I'm not going to bother trying). Their handling of this is about as amateur as it's possible to imagine!

 

This is not a good deal for me as I'm one of those pays $25 every 3 months and buys whatever data I need ($25 every once in a while and topping up with $5). It's not like I can't afford a regular cellphone plan but I see no reason to pay $60+/month for something I barely use.

 

As if AT&T's incompetence over the last few years hasn't been enough (eg repeatedly losing my data balance by "accidentally" failing to auto-renew on the correct day), I will certainly remember this display of outright greed by AT&T. If I need to pay $30/month I'll give it to T-mobile instead. First I will try the Airvoice $10/month plan. Their data cost is highish, but the little I use may even fit within that. I'll just port my existing gophone number to google voice.

 

Graham

Message 71 of 82 (2,721 Views)
Teacher

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I have the LG Thrive (P506), and I'm on the $2/day unlimited plan. I bought 500MB of data initially, and have been rolling it over each month buying the mininum $5 worth. I've really only used 3G when my cable modem is down, and can't use wifi. Or when I've been on the road, and away from a wifi hot spot. I top off the account every 90 days for $25, and have rolled over a considerable balance on the account, because I don't use the phone a whole lot. This was the perfect plan for me, until they decided to pull this greedy move. I'll just live without the 3G that I hardly use anyway. It's not worth being forced into a $25 a month plan to keep a little 3G.

 

I was lusting for a Motorola Atrix 2 or perhaps even a Samsung Galaxy SII Skyrocket to use as my Go Phone, because of their faster dual core processors, larger higher resolution screens, and better cameras, but doubt I'll bother now.

 

For those of you who use GPS on your smartphones, you can precache maps ahead of time. Also, I believe there are alternative GPS apps that load maps on the phone, and don't require cellular data connection.

Message 72 of 82 (2,716 Views)

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

I have replaced my GoPhone with a Platinumtel phone for data.  For the most part, I am happy with it, but I occasionally will need data outside of Platinumtel/Sprint coverage, so I am filling that gap with an Airvoice SIM.  I just activated it today.  I have to spend at least $10 every 90 days to keep it active.  I put the SIM in my former GoPhone, which is an unlocked Pantech Link.  I then called Airvoice customer service and they downloaded the settings to my Pantech phone, so I can now use it for data.  I was very impressed with the Airvoice customer service.

Message 73 of 82 (2,686 Views)
Professor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

Thanks for the suggestion about preloading maps and using wifi to get GPS direction to run. That does work if I start a trip from a wifi hotspot.

I will opt for a Garmin GPS that will break even in cost for as little as 4 month's use.
Message 74 of 82 (2,604 Views)
Tutor

Re: Data only with monthly plans?

Hi ATT also screwed me nicely with theri surprising stop this month to renew the pay as you go data packages. Unfortunately I have $80 balance, which I now have no use for. Before I call their horrible client care: - has anyone managed to get $ back from them from account balance, which now can no longr be used? - can any of the ATT monthly plans be used paying for it with pay as you go balance money, and if, what is the minimum contract term for such data enabled plans? ...I am leaving the country in about 2 months from now. Best ter11
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