Ina Fried

Recent Posts by Ina Fried

Here’s the Download on Verizon’s New “Double Data” Plans

Starting today, Verizon is offering customers buying a new 4G smartphone a choice of “double data” plans — users will get twice as much data for the same price the carrier had been charging.

However, Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney sent an email clarifying some misconceptions that have been circulating since word of the new plans cropped up on Monday.

First off, all customers who buy a 4G smartphone are eligible. Second, they can keep the plan for as long as they stay on a 4G smartphone. “Limited time” in this case refers to how long Verizon will keep offering the double data plans to new customers.

Third, for existing customers, only those who have upgraded their service or bought a new 4G smartphone within the last 14 days are eligible to switch to the double data plans. That said, many of Verizon’s smartphone customers are still grandfathered in on the unlimited plans that Verizon, like other carriers used to offer.

Verizon and AT&T now require customers to pick from one of several “tiers” of data, based on how many megabytes or gigabytes they will use — a number that is still kind of fuzzy for a lot of people. Verizon, like other carriers, offers a data calculator that tries to help.

T-Mobile offers unlimited data on most of its plans, but starts to throttle the speed once users hit their specified threshold. Sprint, meanwhile, continues to offer and heavily promote unlimited data plans for smartphones.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work