Mentioning the words "unlimited" and "AT&T" in the same sentence around the wrong person is bound to draw out a long diatribe of grievances and outrage. I was promised unlimited, not 5GB and a middle finger. AT&T has been throttling existing customers ever since it discontinued unlimited plans in 2010. One thing it hasn't done, however, is raise the price.
Well, you can now check that off the list. AT&T will increase the price from $30 to $35 a month.
This news comes after AT&T raised its throttling cap from 5GB to 22GB. That's a significant difference that gives unlimited customers much more capacity to put strain on the network. Under those circumstances, AT&T is asking them to pay a little bit more.
There's an opening here, too. Verizon just upped the price of its unlimited plans this month. And by comparison, Big Red's increase pulls much more out of existing subscribers. Grandfathered unlimited plans on that network have jumped from $30 to $50 a month. AT&T can point to those guys and go: Hey, come on, am I right?
$35 a month sits between the current cost of 2GB of data ($30) and 5GB of data ($50) with AT&T's Mobile Share Value plans. Setting aside that this is a price increase, it's much less than what new subscribers have to pay for a comparable amount of data (20GB goes for $140 a month these days). AT&T will waive the ETFs for customers who cancel in the 60 days following the rate increase, because it probably figures it's losing money on you anyway. But if you're on AT&T Next, you will still have to pay off the remaining balance.
The change will take effect in February 2016. That gives folks a couple months to scrape up the extra $60 a year this price increase will cost, which some will then proceed to spend on Fallout 4, figuring an extra $5 a month is kind of whatever. Assuming, that is, that this isn't part of a future trend.