Los Angeles Times
POSTED: 2:02 p.m. HST, Aug 21, 2014
LAST UPDATED: 8:57 a.m. HST, Aug 22, 2014
After antitrust concerns sank a Sprint and T-Mobile merger this summer, the two carriers are now duking it out for customers with new unlimited data packages announced Thursday morning.
Sprint introduced a $60 monthly plan that features unlimited talk, text and data. The plan launches Friday for existing and new Sprint customers who pay for a smartphone at full price, bring their own device or get one through Sprint's Easy Pay plan, the company's installment billing option.
The new unlimited plan is targeted toward individuals and comes a few days after the Kansas company announced the Sprint Family Share Pack, designed for large families who use a lot of data. Under that plan, families of four who sign up before October can get unlimited talk and text and 20 gigabytes of monthly data for $100 per month through the end of 2015.
In response to Sprint's new pricing, T-Mobile announced it would give a year's worth of unlimited data to customers who recruit a Sprint, AT&T or Verizon customer to its service, with the recruited customer also receiving free unlimited data. Under that promotion, which kicks off Aug. 29, a customer with T-Mobile's 1 GB plan could get unlimited data for the same $50 price they already pay after recruiting a friend. Normally, T-Mobile charges $80 per month for unlimited high-speed data.
Meanwhile, Verizon, which doesn't offer an unlimited data option, responded to Sprint and T-Mobile's new plans by pointing out that its network was recently ranked the best in Los Angeles, in California and in the U.S. by RootMetrics, a network testing firm.
"Consumers make decisions on a variety of factors not just price," Verizon spokesman Ken Muche told the Los Angeles Times. "They want to know what their experience is going to be like on a network, and they're going to ask themselves, 'Is this truly unlimited if it doesn't work where I'm at or if it's slow?'"
AT&T did not respond to a request for comment.