The No. 3 U.S. carrier is making waves today by announcing plans to begin capping its tethering plans to 5 GB of data per month beginning October 2. This date is interesting since October 4 is when Apple is expected to unveil its new line of iPhones, according to SprintFeed. Coincidence?
Under the banner “Season of Change,” the internal document shown below indicates that Sprint’s new mobile hotspot add-on plan will have a 5GB limit, affecting both new and existing customers. The price: $29.99/month. This compares to 2GB plans for the same service being offered by both AT&T and Verizon for $20. The implementation of a limited tethering data plan suggests Sprint is gearing up for the iPhone, which it currently doesn’t sell, and is preparing for the increased data usage on its network.
Besides, it isn’t the first change Sprint has introduced in recent months.
According to Tuaw:
So far Sprint has raised its Early Termination Fees, discontinued its Premier service, raised its upgrade fees, and has now capped its tethering plans. These are all quite consumer-hostile moves on the carrier’s part in the lead-up to a supposed iPhone launch, and they don’t paint a particularly rosy picture of the company’s stance toward its customers. Despite rumors pointing to Sprint offering the iPhone with unlimited data in the relatively near future, it’s worth noting that other networks who shall remain nameless have buckled under the strain of “unlimited” iPhone data in the past and have summarily discontinued those plans.
With October 4 fast approaching, we’ll know pretty soon whether a third U.S. carrier will now sell the iPhone. We’ll keep you updated.
Please note that this change has nothing to do with the carrier’s unlimited data plan for when the mobile data goes straight to the phone. This plan remains. Neither AT&T nor Verizon offer similar unlimited plans.