Sprint lures AT&T’s iPad customers with unlimited data portable Wi-Fi hotspots

“When Apple Inc. began selling a version of its iPad tablet this year that could connect exclusively to AT&T Inc.’s third-generation wireless network, Sprint Nextel Corp. saw an opportunity,” Greg Bensinger reports for Bloomberg.

“Touting the unlimited data on its portable Wi-Fi devices — AT&T stopped offering unlimited plans in June — Sprint has been luring iPad owners to its network. Sprint’s palm-sized Overdrive 3G/4G hotspot device allows users to connect to the lower-priced Wi-Fi-only iPad from anywhere the carrier has coverage,” Bensinger reports. “The portable Wi-Fi devices give Sprint, as well as Verizon Wireless, a chance to tap into a market otherwise closed to them through Apple’s exclusive contract with AT&T, which has connected 500,000 iPads to its network out of 3.3 million sold. Apple and AT&T have declined to say when their contract ends.”

Bensinger reports, “In June, AT&T stopped offering $29.99 unlimited data plans on the iPad in favor of tiered pricing starting at $25 for 2 gigabytes of data per month, with additional gigabytes of data available for $10 each per month. The Overdrive offers unlimited data for $59.99 per month. A user streaming an average of one 30-minute television show and 30 minutes of music per day would exceed their 2 gigabyte limit by month’s end, according to AT&T’s website. That doesn’t include any e-mails sent or received or additional Internet browsing. Sprint Chief Executive Officer Dan Hesse has said the Overland Park, Kansas-based carrier has no plans to end unlimited data plans, while Verizon Wireless said it will introduce data caps in as soon as four months.”

Read more in the full article here.

40 Comments

  1. Grandfathered unlimited to my iPhone 3g. Upgrade someday. I commute and have been catching up on my Whose Line via YouTube. I crushed the 2Gb limit within a week.

    Yay Whose Line. Best comedy, ever, since Carol Burnett. Dating myself, I know.

  2. Grandfathered unlimited to my iPhone 3g. Upgrade someday. I commute and have been catching up on my Whose Line via YouTube. I crushed the 2Gb limit within a week.

    Yay Whose Line. Best comedy, ever, since Carol Burnett. Dating myself, I know.

  3. So far, in over four months of using ATT’s 3G on my iPad, I’ve used 3.2GB total. As others mention above, I tend to be on WiFi when doing things like watching movies. I doubt I’ll ever use more than 2GB per month, even though I’m grandmothered in to unlimited. I don’t see the big deal here.

  4. So far, in over four months of using ATT’s 3G on my iPad, I’ve used 3.2GB total. As others mention above, I tend to be on WiFi when doing things like watching movies. I doubt I’ll ever use more than 2GB per month, even though I’m grandmothered in to unlimited. I don’t see the big deal here.

  5. I easily go over 2gb when I travel, even with WIFI at home, if you use Skype and heavy email, browse etc. I get also into the 2 GB range…

    ATT should offer an unlimited or 10GB plan for $49…

    The iPad is also meant to be used for media consumption. At home I can watch TV, on the road I want to use the iPad to watch TV, but on 2GB…. its a joke.

    Glad to see Sprint given ATT some heat there.

  6. I easily go over 2gb when I travel, even with WIFI at home, if you use Skype and heavy email, browse etc. I get also into the 2 GB range…

    ATT should offer an unlimited or 10GB plan for $49…

    The iPad is also meant to be used for media consumption. At home I can watch TV, on the road I want to use the iPad to watch TV, but on 2GB…. its a joke.

    Glad to see Sprint given ATT some heat there.

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