AT&T has expanded its shared data services to include several new packages that are better suited for data-chugging businesses and consumers. When the company first introduced its group data plans last summer, it offered bandwidth in blocks ranging from 1GB to 20GB for $40 to $200 a month -- figures that still appear to be accurate. Today's update raises the bar to as high as 50GB of data per month.
The new plans include one at 30GB for $300, a second at 40GB for $400 and the 50GB option for $500. Along with having more data per account, it can be split between more devices. The 20GB tier is capped at 10 web-connected gadgets while the higher capacity plans stretch that to 15, 20 and 25 devices -- at least if you're a business, anyway. The press release says consumers are still limited to 10 devices.
Data overages are billed at $15/gigabyte, adding a new phone to the account costs $30 a month, laptops and the like cost $20, while tablets and gaming devices run $10 -- the same rates you'll find on the 10GB to 20GB options. These tiers obviously still include unlimited talk and text, but on March 22 AT&T will start providing data-only plans ranging from 4GB ($30) to 50GB ($335) for tablets, laptops and so on.
Companies who need data sharing for more than 25 devices can go through the new "Business Pooled Nation for Data Plans." This lets you add basic phones for $20 a month with 300MB of usage, while coverage for smartphones, tablets and laptops includes a 2GB bucket for $45, 5GB for $50 and 10GB for $80. You'll likely want to read the fine print as there are more restrictions than the plans above.
In semi-related news, AT&T has halved the price of HTC's Windows Phone 8X. The handset maker's WP8 flagship is now available for $49 (8GB) and $99 (16GB) on contract as well as $399 and $449 off contract. Key specs include a 4.3-inch 720p display, a dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm MSM8960, 1GB of RAM, an 8MP camera in back and 2.1MP up front, 4G and NFC support, as well as up to 11.3 hours of talk time.
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