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Sprint rolls out an HD option for its new unlimited data plan

By Shawn Knight
Aug 26, 2016
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  1. T-Mobile last week announced that it would be moving to a single, unlimited data plan that would effectively eliminate traditional data plans. Dubbed T-Mobile One and scheduled to launch on September 6, the plan was ripe with fine print that you don’t want to gloss over like the fact that the base package only allows for streaming of non-HD video (subscribers can enable HD playback for $25 extra per month).

    Sprint, the nation’s fourth largest wireless carrier, unveiled a very similar plan (with similar restrictions) called Unlimited Freedom on the same day as T-Mobile. The key difference between the two offerings is that Sprint’s plan didn’t offer an upgrade path to HD. That’s no longer the case.

    On Friday, Sprint announced a second package called Unlimited Freedom Premium that allows for up to HD-quality streams for an additional $20 per month (the base Unlimited Freedom package sells for $60). Best yet, those that sign up ASAP can get the Premium service upgrade for free through October 31.

    How does that compare to T-Mobile One? Well, there are a few key differences.

    Whereas T-Mobile One allows for video streams of up to 4K, Sprint’s Unlimited Freedom Premium limits HD video streams to 1080p+ (music is limited to 1.5Mbps while streaming gaming is capped at up to 8Mbps).

    Something else you’ll also want to consider is the price. For a single line, you’ll pay $15 less with Sprint each month if you were to get the basic and HD streaming packages with either carrier. The savings jump to $30 a month if you add a second line to the account: $140 for Sprint and $170 for T-Mobile.

    Image courtesy solarseven, Shutterstock

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  2. Spect

    Spect TS Member

    I am on Sprints "unlimited" plan. Up to about a week ago I could stream a 720p YouTube video with zero interruptions. Now it is impossible. It's really crappy that now they want another $20 bucks out of me to "not" be throttled. I highly doubt they are adding a higher bandwidth service. They are now just charging more to those who want to use their service at a decent speed. This is a fancy way for Sprint to squeeze more money out of their customers and save bandwidth on those that won't pay. BOO Sprint, Bad Form! I have been with Sprint for 8 months and have been extremely pleased with them up until now. They were not the Sprint of the past they really did have good, fast, reliable data speeds up until now. I am very upset.
     
    psycros likes this.
  3. mrjgriffin

    mrjgriffin TS Booster Posts: 136   +51

    I dont understand this hd streaming issue. phone screens are small.......they cant effectly display a true hd image lol. if anyone has ever been on youtube and compared 480p to 720p and upwards u honestly dont notice a huge difference because uploaders dont upload REAL HD QUALITY ANYWAYS. seriously when u go to 480 to 720 on most videos all u notice is a little blur being removed. hd streaming on phones is a gimmick lol and so many are falling for it.
     
  4. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,324   +711

    A better question is "who the hell is watching that much video on a phone?" I would submit that its a very small number of people. Most unlimited data subscribers are people with limited incomes using their phones as hotspots for their computers and tablets. Its very easy to do this without the carrier's knowledge. Frankly, if I had to choose between high-speed home broadband and unlimited mobile data, I'd be toting a flipphone again..but I know the under-30's can't get their heads out of their phones for 30 seconds so I'm sure I'm in the minority.
     
  5. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Maniac Posts: 318   +117

    For some reason some people enjoy watching full movies or TV shows on their phones throughout the day. I bet most people that do aren't even actively watching the device, but instead just using it for background noise and glancing at it every so often. I have to believe that you'd have to be unemployed or not in school to actually use so much HD video data and actually be watching it.

    Either way, these add on options are extremely over priced.
     
  6. mrjgriffin

    mrjgriffin TS Booster Posts: 136   +51

    I agree its very overpriced. my cable company offeres 150mbps down 3 mbps up with 2 terrabytes of data usage for 65 a month lol. cell phone providers are money hungry crooks
     

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