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Q: USA: Cheapest 3G mobile plans for data transfer, per operator ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: USA: Cheapest 3G mobile plans for data transfer, per operator
Category: Business and Money > Advertising and Marketing
Asked by: petterk-ga
List Price: $100.00
Posted: 01 May 2006 14:57 PDT
Expires: 31 May 2006 14:57 PDT
Question ID: 724502
For every important 3G mobile operator in the USA, I want to know:
- Which 3G plan offered by that operator would be cheapest for a
customer who only uses the phone for data transfer, and who transfers
2.5Gb per month?
- What are the specifics of this plan? (Monthly fee, minutes, cost per
Mb data transfer, minimum contract period, etc.)
- Does this plan require the customer to buy a handset from the
operator?  If yes, what is the cheapest plan that _doesn't_ require
this? What are the specifics of that plan?
- Is/are this/these plan(s) available everywhere/to everyone in the
USA?  If not, what are the limitations?

By "important 3G mobile operator" I mean operator who has >1.000.000
mobile subscribers (3G or other) and who offers 3G mobile services.
Subject: Re: USA: Cheapest 3G mobile plans for data transfer, per operator
Answered By: leapinglizard-ga on 02 May 2006 12:47 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Dear petterk,

At present, the only 3G network operators in the United States are Sprint,
Cingular, and Verizon. T-Mobile plans a 3G rollout at the end of this
year or in early 2007.

    Ray also spoke briefly to T-Mobile's 3G, or third generation,
    plans, and seemed to indicate that the carrier may be
    following a more accelerated plan towards next generation data
    services. Cingular announced the launch of its own high-speed
    HSDPA network earlier this month.

    Ray revealed that 3G testing was already occurring in some 
    markets, although he declined to provide specific locations,
    as the networks are not publicly available.

    "We are very hopeful that by the end of 2006, and definitely 
    in 2007, we'd be able to bring 3G services to the market. Some 
    of this is auction dependent," Ray said, alluding to a large
    cellular spectrum auction to take place next summer. "We're
    hopefully looking at a 3G deployment in late 2006."

BetaNews: T-Mobile Plans for Growth, 3G in 2006

Sprint's 3G plan costs $59.99 a month with a voice plan and $79.99
without. Coverage is available throughout the United States in major urban
areas. The minimum length of contract is two years, and data transfer 
is unlimited as long as you do not abuse the service by continuously
streaming large multimedia files or operating a server through the
wireless connection. 

Sprint Business: Mobile Broadband

Like Sprint, Cingular offers an unlimited 3G data plan for $79.99
a month, or for $59.99 if you purchase a voice plan worth at least
$39.99 a month. The minimum contract length is two years, and the usual
provisions against bandwidth abuse apply. Coverage is available nationwide
in metropolitan areas and along major highways.

Cingular: BroadbandConnect

Finally, Verizon also offers a two-year 3G plan for $59.99 a month with 
unlimited data transfer, under the standard abuse restrictions, as long
as you purchase a voice plan from them. Coverage is again nationwide,
with the emphasis on major urban areas and traffic corridors.

Verizon Wireless: BroadbandAccess

Thank you for bringing your question to us. If you have any concerns about
the accuracy of my research, please advise me through a Clarification
Request and allow me the opportunity to fully meet your needs before
you rate this answer.



Search strategy:

3g data plan usa

wireless broadband access

cell phone data plan

Request for Answer Clarification by petterk-ga on 03 May 2006 01:43 PDT
Thank you for a good answer.  Could you please clarify the answer to
this subquestion:

>- Does this plan require the customer to buy a handset from the
>operator?  If yes, what is the cheapest plan that _doesn't_ require
>this? What are the specifics of that plan?

Do I understand correctly that the plans you found do not require the
subscriber to buy a handset from the operator?

I have a follow-up request, which you are free to answer if you feel
it is covered by the payment for the first question.  Feel free to
decline - I won't let that affect the rating.  Anyway, the question
is: Based on the original question specification, are there are
cheaper plans for high-speed data based on Edge (also called "2.5G")?

Clarification of Answer by leapinglizard-ga on 03 May 2006 07:56 PDT
You are correct -- there is no requirement to purchase a handset with
these data plans, although one is required to purchase a voice plan in
order to benefit from the $59.99 promotional pricing. One may use a
compatible handset of one's own with the voice plan, or dispense with
a voice plan altogether and pay the $79.99 full price for the data

As for your follow-up question, I'm afraid I don't have much for you.
I am familiar with 2.5G, but I have not been able to locate any U.S.
operator that currently offers a 2.5G data plan. It seems the big
American carriers rolled out their mobile data networks so far behind
Europe and Asia that they just went directly to 3G.

petterk-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars

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