Verizon is replacing its confusing mess of six “unlimited” wireless plans with one slightly less confusing options menu.
Starting tomorrow, when the new plans launch, customers choosing the new plan will have two main choices. Only the more expensive option will include access to the fastest parts of Verizon’s 5G network, and some perks that used to be included in base prices will be sold as add-ons.
Verizon said in announcement that its new line “redefines wireless freedom” and “puts an end to bloated packages.” But evaluating new plans and additional add-ons will not be easy, and maintenance may become more expensive, at least for some customers.
“If a new Verizon customer wants to recreate what used to be Verizon’s highest-tier unlimited plan, it will end up costing more than it used to,” said Roger Entner, founder of Recon Analytics. according to The Wall Street Journal.
“The way to get people to spend more is usually not math exercises,” Entner said. Financial analysts at KeyBanc Capital Markets wrote in a note to investors that trying to convince customers to pay more for Verizon’s faster mid-range 5G is “likely to be a losing battle as consumers likely know other providers will provide mid-band 5G” at no additional fees. according to Light Reading.
Unlimited Welcome has notable limitations
Verizon Unlimited Data Plans
The cheaper of Verizon’s two new options is called Unlimited greeting– not to be confused with the current “Welcome without limits” plan. Unlimited welcome wishes cost $65 per month plus taxes and fees per line, or as little as $27 per line for family plans with at least five users. The more expensive Unlimited Plus option will cost $80 per month for a single line, or just $42 per line for plans with a minimum of five users.
Unlimited Plus is required to access what Verizon calls its 5G ultra-broadband network. Ultra-wideband provides faster speeds with Verizon’s widely available C-band spectrum and millimeter wave spectrum available in very limited areas. Unlimited Welcome will get access to 5G, but not the Ultra Wideband variety, so it won’t provide as much of an upgrade over 4G speeds.
“Unlike others, Unlimited Plus has no smartphone data limits, slows you down, or reduces the priority of your data,” Verizon said.
Another big limitation for the entry-level Unlimited Welcome plan is that it doesn’t have access to mobile hotspot usage – both plans allow unlimited phone data usage, but hotspot usage is limited on the more expensive plan and absent on the cheaper one. The more expensive plan includes 30 GB of high speed hotspot every month and slower hotspot speeds once the hotspot limit is reached.
If you go over the 30GB limit, you’ll get up to 3Mbps on 5G Ultra Wideband until the end of the month, or up to 600Kbps on non-Ultra Wideband 5G or 4G LTE.