One of the problems with the pricing structure of American carriers is that people who buy their phones outright don't get any kind of break on the service plans themselves, giving people fewer incentives to get away from subsidies. T-Mobile has addressed this (by essentially throwing out subsidies all together), but today AT&T fires back with the new Mobile Share Value Plan. Basically it's a $15 discount if you buy a phone unsubsidized, including the new AT&T Next plans, or if you've already paid off your on-contract device.

New customers can choose the Mobile Share Value Plan when they bring a phone to the service (like, say, a Nexus 5), purchase a new phone outright, or start an AT&T Next plan (which carries its own zero financing monthly charges). If you're a current AT&T customer who's still on a contract from buying a subsidized phone, you'll have to wait until the contract ends, then manually switch to a Mobile Share Value Plan. Unlimited talk and text is included with all plans, and data starts at 300MB for the basic $45 a month plan ($40 with a "dumb" phone) all the way up to 50GB a month for a whopping $400 a month.


Prices start at $40 a month for unlimited talk/text and 300MB if you bring an unsubsidized "dumb" phone or sign up for Next. Add $5 a month for a smartphone, and another $15 a month if you want a standard subsidized device. Simple!

There's also a slightly adjusted AT&T Next plan to choose from, with a new upgrade option starting at 18 months instead of 12. It will spread the phone payments over 26 months instead of 20, making each month-to-month payment slightly smaller in return. The 0% financing remains intact, and customers will still have to pay the full remaining balance if they cancel service early.

AT&T's service is still quite pricey even compared to national competitors, and there's no option for unlimited service like some of us were hoping for. But at least those who decide to bring their own device will get a break on the bill every month. The new Mobile Share Value Plan and the extended Next plan will be available starting this Sunday, December 8th.

Source: AT&T

AT&T’s* new Mobile Share Value® plans will make it even easier for customers to share data and save money while enjoying the nation’s fastest and most reliable 4G LTE network.1 Beginning Dec. 8, new and existing wireless consumer and business customers will have the option to choose from new Mobile Share Value plans. The new plans offer customers more savings and provide ‘No Annual Service Contract’ options.

With the ‘No Annual Service Contract’ options, smartphone customers can save $15 a month on Mobile Share Value plans.2 Customers can receive these monthly savings when they: Get a new smartphone for no down payment with AT&T Next; bring their own smartphone; purchase a smartphone at full retail price; or when their smartphone is no longer under contract and they switch to the new plans. All Mobile Share Value plan customers will benefit from shared data plus unlimited talk and text on their phones. Consumers will have the ability to connect up to 10 devices, including tablets and other wireless devices, while business customers will be able to connect up to 10, 15, 20 or 25 devices, depending on the plan.

  • It’s never been more affordable to get on the nation’s fastest and most reliable 4G LTE network. For only $45 a month, smartphone customers can now get unlimited talk and text plus 300MB of data.3Qualifying smartphones can be added to any Mobile Share Value plan for $25 more a month per phone; tablets can be added for $10 more per device.
  • Customers with basic and messaging phones can enjoy a low monthly rate of $40 for unlimited talk, text and 300MB of data.For $20 more a month per phone, additional basic and messaging lines can be added to any Mobile Share Value plan.
  • In addition to the 300MB option, AT&T Mobile Share Value plans offer data options ranging from 1GB up to 50 GB, all with unlimited talk and text.

AT&T is also adding a new AT&T Nextsm plan with an 18 month upgrade option on Dec. 8.  It will be available to consumers for up to four smartphones, and to select small business customers, who may provide employees with up to six company-owned devices.3 The new plan will make monthly smartphone payments even lower than the existing AT&T Next option, by spreading payments over 26 months and giving eligible customers a way to get a new smartphone after 18 monthly payments for no down payment, no upgrade fee, no activation fee and no financing fee.

“With our new Mobile Share Value Plans, customers don’t have to compromise,” said David Christopher, chief marketing officer, AT&T Mobility.  “Our new no contract option lets customers add a smartphone to the nation’s fastest and most reliable 4G LTE network at a lower monthly cost.  Customers want great value and a premium network - and now they can save more and get unlimited talk, text and data to share.”

The new Mobile Share Value plans make it easy for customers to manage their data without needing to keep track of multiple plans. Consumers, Individual Responsibility Users (IRUs), and Corporate Responsibility Users (CRUs) have different options to stay informed about their data usage and can check it anytime online through the my AT&T mobile app, or by dialing *DATA# from their mobile phone. AT&T also sends courtesy alerts to customers nearing their data allowance for the month.

All plans include access to AT&T’s nationwide Wi-Fi network at no additional charge.Customers can learn more about the new plans and determine which plan is best for them at www.att.com/mobilesharevalue.

Michael Crider
Michael is a native Texan and a former graphic designer. He's been covering technology in general and Android in particular since 2011. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction, and salsa verde, in no particular order.

  • Dave Whyte

    It is the right move. Still too expensive but starting to go in the right direction. It will take Verizon lowering the off contract price below this to make this any cheaper, which I doubt (they will probably match the price).

  • tai yeung

    $80 per month for the 2GB plan...I would rather just get the go phone plan for 60(which you usually can find for cheaper on callingmart or eBay) for 2GB

    • krudl3rx

      Tmobile roaming is important to have for a lot of people

      • tai yeung

        If you would look at the coverage map, you are not really missing much. It's still 100x better than my t mobile service

  • EH101

    Wake me up when share type plans become 10 or 15 dollars per gigabyte, and start off at 1 gigabyte.

    I mean, look at their prices. They charge a 25 dollar fee to increase from roughly .3 GB to 1 GB. But on the other end of the spectrum, they charge 20 dollars to increase from 15 GB to 20 GB. In what world is this fair? Seems like people on the lower tiers are having to subsidize the cost for the higher tiers.

    Make a GB cost 10 or 15 dollars flat, and I'm willing to bet more people would hop up to the next available tier, instead of sticking with 1 GB, even when they likely wouldn't use that extra GB. This will also force those in the highest plans to pay their fair share.

  • Bob G

    You are paying to put an unsubsidized phone on their network every month. Might as well save money and get a 2 year upgrade, since that seems to be cheaper. WTH?

  • David P

    So I currently pay $180 across four lines before taxes for my unlimited everything, non throttled 4G/LTE data on T-Mobile. We use between 15 and 20 GBs a month. So on the low end we'd pay $230 and on the high end $250 with ATT. Still would need to come down a bit or offer unlimited to make it worth it

  • steelew

    $46/month for straight talk and I'm using an AT&T Galaxy S4 already. 2.5GB 4G LTE (throttled after that), unlimited talk and text. I'll stick with that.

  • BlackBoy88

    If my math is right this is still a bad deal to go without a service contract (unless your phone is over $650 by the outline below)
    15*24=$360 dollars saved for the contract
    Using 2 GB with 2 year agreement with iPhone 5S.
    Next, buy the a unlocked Nexus 5 for $350
    Cost now is $2830
    Sell iPhone for $650
    But by just buying a Nexus 5 and using the 15 dollar discount up front.
    Then the total cost is 80*24+350=$2270
    save $90 by going on contract and selling the contract phone.

  • DJTEN23

    I am buying a Nexus 5, off contract. AT&T has better coverage at this point, and for $5 less, the only thing I lose from a comparable plan on T-Mobile is 500MB of data. ($60 for 2GB on AT&T.) And if for some reason I don't like AT&T, I can still go to T-Mobile. This is an incredible move for AT&T, sign me up.

    • BlackBoy88

      If you don't need roaming you could use a MNVO that uses AT&T network to save a few bucks a month.

  • doodlebug4952 .

    What if you're an individual and don't want/need to share? Just asking.