Although Sprint's data plans are significantly cheaper than their competition, there was still some outcry when Sprint decided to charge a $10 monthly add-on charge to phones with 4G connectivity, even if your area isn't actually covered by their WiMax network. Now, however, all smartphones activated after January 30 will be subject to the same charge.

Sprint's reasoning - that “building, maintaining and expanding wireless data networks isn’t free" - is sound, and you can't argue that they still beat every other carrier when it comes to the price of their data plans. Data plans for the EVO 4G, Epic 4G, and EVO Shift 4G will remained unaffected as they are already subject to the fee. Now that all of Sprint's smartphones have the same data plan, anybody planning on picking up a 4G phone to replace their current one?

Source: Sprint

  • Jon

    Yes, $10 more a month sucks, but Sprint's data plans still beat the other carriers to a pulp. If you're on a budget, you shouldn't have gotten a 4G phone in the first place.

  • LMAO @ Jon

    This includes all phones (4G or 3G) from now on. Make sure you read the entire article before making your "if you're on a budget" comment money bags!

  • Digitalthug

    Although initially shocked, I should have seen this coming. Sprint was falling behind a few years ago and needed a drastic price cut in its data plans to lure customers. And now that they've done a 180, and have arguably the highest selling smartphone in America(EVO), it makes sense to raise the price. This is especially true since Clearwire has had funding issues rolling out 4G in new areas, and Sprint still has to pay them per their contractual agreement regardless of 4G coverage.
    Consequently, I see this driving up the sales of our 4G phones (i work for Sprint), as this will no longer be an option that people can avoid going with our 3G phones. Customers should not get their panties in a bunch over this, as Sprint still offers the best value compared to other carriers. But just in case, I'll be getting my bat and riot shield ready!

  • JJ

    Its not as bad as it looks. They are having money problems with wimax and clearwire already. So this is going to help them in keeping up with verizon and att. The only possible issue this might have is now that the iphone is on verizon and sprint raised their prices which are closer to verizon prices people are going to think twice and may move towards verizon to get iphone. I wont but other people may.

  • RuzzT

    Do you know how often I "use" 4G?? Never. Why? Because 1) it causes my Epic to burn through the battery at an alarming rate, 2) it's always disconnecting, and 3) I can get by with Wifi and 3G.

    So, why are Sprint "smart"phone customers customers being forced to pay an extra $10 a month? Because Sprint needs/wants the extra money. No...Other...Reason.

    I literally never have 4G on. I tried to use it a few times with Google Maps in Satellite view to navigate to a destination and (even with the phone charged 100% and plugged in the battery would drain!! Come on!

    So you can parrot "Sprint is the cheapest smart phone contract, awk!" all day long but it still is irrelevant when I don't use 4G at all. I would rather Sprint just say 'our data plan is $X/month because that's what it is'. Don't lie, mislead and promise stuff when 4G isn't what it's touted to be.

    AND don't follow that up by telling smartphone users that “building, maintaining and expanding wireless data networks isn’t free". How cocky! Sure it's not free, but a $10/month extra fee is too much all at one time. Let me grab a tissue to soak up the single tear from my eye for Sprint's trials and tribulations.

    • abeee

      I agree.

      I live 15 mins from Seattle and I get 1 bar for 4G (I get about 5 bars for 3G) which results in massive battery drain as the phone loses 4G reception and reconnects again.

      Often, whilst driving (as a passenger) internet will suddenly stop responding - after looking at Logcat I see it's establishing a connection again.

      so I've stopped using 4G too.

      By the way, Sprint never gave my account a credit for that mail-in-rebate I mailed them !!