The wireless industry here in the US is definitely changing, if but slowly - very slowly. T-Mobile was the first to start some new trends, notably doing away with data caps. Users who exceeded their data allotment for the billing cycle would be throttled back, not cut off. Sprint followed suit in October of last year. Recently, Verizon Wireless finally caught on and added free throttling to its pre-paid plans and also to its post-paid plans for a small monthly fee. Now, AT&T joins the fray with its announcement today of Mobile Share Advantage.

Starting August 21, AT&T customers (including those on the Business plans) will no longer have to fear overage charges. After exceeding the data pool, speeds will be reduced to 2G, just like the rest of the major US carriers. These new plans will inherit the perks of the previous Mobile Share value plans, such as unlimited talk and text, rollover and shareable data, and mobile hotspot capability.

Data Monthly Plan Charge Rollover DataSM, Unlimited Domestic Talk/Text; Unlimited Text from U.S. to 120+ Countries Unlimited Talk/Text to Mexico and Canada; Plan usage in Mexico with no roaming charges3
3GB $40
6GB $60
16GB $90
25GB $110
30GB $135
All Mobile Share Advantage plans also have an access charge of $10 - $40 a month per device not included in prices shown above.

In addition to the throttling feature (which is still technically unlimited), the wireless carrier also announced some new pricing to go along with Mobile Share Advantage. It claims that a customer will get an additional 1GB of data per month for the same price that he or she might pay now. It is certainly worth noting that, while there are no more overage fees, customers will have the option to purchase an extra 10GB in the billing cycle for $20 (since 2G speed can be frustrating).

Finally, AT&T has adjusted its line access fees. For non-contract and AT&T Next installment devices, regular customers will pay a flat $20 per line per month, regardless of data allotment. This means that the line access fee discount for higher tier plans is now gone. Those in the Business plans will pay $15 per line.