AT&T Celebrates The Fact Almost No One Actually Signs Up For Cheaper Plans

from the upsell dept

We recently talked about how claims from various telcos and cable providers that "metered plans" are designed to help lower income types "save money" with cheaper plans was a bunch of bunk. The plans were pretty clearly designed to attract a bare minimum of consumers, so that the companies can claim cheaper plans in their advertising, but make the cheap plans almost impossible to use unless you upgrade. So it should come as little surprise to see AT&T hyping up how few people actually sign up for its "cheap" mobile broadband plans. This isn't a surprise, as we made exactly this point a few months back, when some in the press started misinterpreting some research and claims from Nielsen that the AT&T plans were "a good deal." What's funny, though, is how different the message is depending who these companies are talking to. When it's the press or politicians, it's all about "cheap plans for low level users." But when it's investors the story is about how it's actually resulted in customers paying more on average and they plan to keep ratcheting that up.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: metered billing, mobile broadband, tiered plans
Companies: at&t

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Thread

  1. icon
    Josef Anvil (profile), 9 Dec 2010 @ 6:07am

    A lot of it is the consumer's fault

    When Cable companies moved into the voice market, all of their calling plans were flat rate and included long distance, which was clearly better than what the Telcos were offering.

    The telcos were in a screwed up position because even thought they had competitive VoIP products they couldn't give up their circuit switched voice customers who were paying through the nose. So they did their best to tell everyone how bad VoIP service was.

    Now that consumers feel comfortable with the new services and the telcos are offering that bad VoIP service, they just changed the name from VoIP to "Digital Voice". Once the Cable companies got all that extra voice business bundled with their TV and broadband, they decided to take a lesson from the telcos and start charging for local long distance. And now the telcos are going into the TV market and Im sure the Cable companies will talk about how bad IPTV is.

    And yet with all these new services and faster pipes, both the Telcos and the Cable companies AND Wireless companies want us to believe there is a serious bandwidth shortage and so they need to start metered plans.

    If we sit back and accept this as consumers then its our own fault. If your communications provider in the US charges you for local and long distance calls, then SWITCH. If your broadband provider insists on metering, then SWITCH. Send them a message.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat

Warning: include(/home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395/includes/right_column/ failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395/includes/right_column/ on line 8

Warning: include(): Failed opening '/home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395/includes/right_column/' for inclusion (include_path='.:/usr/share/pear:/home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395:/home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395/..') in /home/beta6/deploy/itasca_20201215-3691-c395/includes/right_column/ on line 8
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.