As you can see over the past few months unlimited plans have really been making its way back into the carrier’s offerings. At one point carriers were eliminating them as an option but some of them are bringing them back, specifically in this case Sprint and T-Mobile. Actually T-Mobile recently started offering nothing but an unlimited plan to its new customers. Note: This article will only discuss post-paid (non-prepaid) unlimited data offerings.
To start T-Mobile’s $70 monthly T-Mobile One plan seems to be the best unlimited option for individuals. Yes, it is $10 more expensive than Sprint’s unlimited data plan, but you get an overall better network and other bonuses with T-Mobile. However, there’s a big catch with the unlimited plans from the two carriers.
T-Mobile’s $70 monthly T-Mobile One unlimited plan is the best option if you need all-you-can-eat data every month, but be advised that T-Mobile limits streaming video down to 480p quality or what it calls “DVD quality.” In their defense this is probably good enough for the average smartphone screen for many users, but you’ll have to pay an extra $25 a month for T-Mobile One Plus if you want higher quality streaming video and unlimited 4G LTE hotspot data. T-Mobile’s unlimited plans still includes the ability to use your phone at no extra cost in Mexico & Canada, free “data” roaming in more than 120 countries, unlimited 3G hotspot data (tethering), unlimited text & 1 hour of free data on certain flights and subscribers receive weekly giveaways from the carrier.
Sprint’s unlimited data plan competes well on price; at $60 a month, it’s $10 cheaper than T-Mobile’s plan. Like T-Mobile, Sprint’s unlimited plan limits the quality of video streaming to 480p and it also limits the speeds of streaming music and gaming (You can pay $20 a month to remove this restriction). However, you do get 5GB of LTE hotspot data with the Sprint unlimited data plan.
The only other unlimited data option comes from AT&T but it requires you to also subscribe to the AT&T’s DirecTV or U-Verse television services. If you do use one of these service, you can pay $100 a month ($60 plus a $40 access fee) for unlimited data with your AT&T wireless plan.
The caveats about unlimited data: It’s not totally without limits. Once you use 23GB of data in a billing cycle, Sprint will slow down your speed in favor of other users if there’s a lot of traffic on their respective networks. AT&T requires you to have television service and starts throttling data at 22GB while T-Mobile throttling begins at 26GB.
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