MetroPCS Drops LTE Intro Plan To $40
And begins tinkering with content restrictive pricing models
Last fall MetroPCS was the first mobile operator in the United States to launch LTE wireless broadband service in parts of Las Vegas
, the Dallas Fort Worth area
, Los Angeles
, Philadelphia and Detroit. However, being first didn't mean it was necessarily good
-- the company offering no data card service, no tethering, limited coverage, 3G-esque speeds and only one supported device: the underwhelming $300 Samsung Craft
. Still, people were quick to respond to our criticims by noting the plan was cheap, starting at $55 for unlimited text, voice and data.
Now the company is taking things even further, issuing a press release
that notes they're dropping their entry-level tier to $40. The release is interesting not only because of the price -- but because MetroPCS appears to be pioneering an effort to charge depending on the content accessed, something network management vendors have been pushing hard
. In this case, MetroPCS has unveiled a new $40 plan that offers unlimited text, talk, web browsing
and YouTube access
-- but not necessarily unlimited Internet access. From the company's plans page
•$40 service plan
offers unlimited talk, text, 4G Web browsing with unlimited YouTube access.
•$50 service plan
includes the same unlimited talk, text, 4G Web services and unlimited YouTube access as the $40 plan. Additional features include international and premium text messaging, turn-by-turn navigation with MetroNAVIGATORTM, ScreenIT, mobile instant messaging, corporate e-mail and 1 GB of additional data access, with premium features available through MetroSTUDIOTM when connected via Wi-Fi, including audio capabilities to listen and download music and access to preview and trial video content.
•$60 service plan
provides the same premium features as the $50 plan, plus unlimited data access and MetroSTUDIO premium content such as 18 video-on-demand channels and audio downloads.
It's also interesting to note that in order to get real, unlimited Internet access -- users now have to sign up for a tier that pushes MetroPCS content on the consumer. Their terms of service
certainly gets interesting very quickly, with rather nebulous definitions of what MetroPCS deems "data access" and varying restrictions on what kind of content you can actually access:
This of course all raises a few neutrality flags, given they're murky on restrictions and are giving priority to their own Metro
content. This is all made possible in part because MetroPCS offers only one smartphone right now and can shape the content experience to their heart's delight. MetroPCS has promised a handful of LTE smartphones later this year, and we'll be interested to see if they all suffer from this highly fractured Internet experience. While "$40 for LTE smartphone service" sounds nice, you're not really getting LTE Internet or a smartphone...you're getting LTE service at 3G speeds on a crippled device within a walled garden.
Re: Seems pretty clear to me...
said by Karl Bode:There is no cap on the $40 plan. But web access is thru the MetroWeb proxy and they limit what sites you have access to.
What's the data consumption limit on the $40 plan?
Re: Metro PCS LTE IS A JOKE
said by borka:The basic $40 plan only can access the web thru a proxy called MetroWeb and that only gives you access to SOME web sites:
so what is 4g web??
the way i understand it, 4g web should be ANY website?
»www.metropcs.com/products/metrow ··· etroweb/
The $50 plan gives you plain old straight web access to anything up to a 1GB cap
The $60 plan gives unlimited access to all web sites.
| |fiberguyMy views are my own.Premium
Re: Bye Bye open internet of innovation?
said by MxxCon:They may not now, but they all came from that platform. They all came from metered plans, went unlimited, and many of them are talking about going back to a metered plan again. What makes you think that they'd like like to get back to walled garden plans as an entry option?
yes, metropcs is one of the cheapest, but i don't think any other carrier discriminate based on content/websites..
While I think limiting access to providers of web content that are available to the general web is stoopid to begin with. however, there is nothing to stop carriers of 'data' or data networks from making their first line offering be that of their own content portals.. and from there, the next step would be to start adding in "content powered by" (youtube, hulu, etc)
Drastic changes don't seem to happen any more, not since the day of AOL going from hourly billing to their so called unlimited use. Today, when they go one small step at a time, its much easier for them to change with out people noticing or caring, much.
| |fiberguyMy views are my own.Premium
Re: Metro I personally agree that metro is what metro is and they do what they do well. However, people with the microphone, such as on this site, cough cough, seem to feel that every carrier should be the same, you know, in the name of competition and "innovation".. by the way, what exactly IS innovation around here anyway? .. it seems to be what ever the powers that be, here, wants innovation to be.
I see innovation on many levels. I find MetroPCS to be innovative period. They are the ones that really started pushing out flat rate unlimited metro services to customers.. seemed to be a move in a direction that others (the big boys) have no followed. Seems innovative to me!
HOWEVER, now that they have pushed out (omg, say it) "4G" service, they're not innovating or offering something that people want.. yup! No one wants this stuff.. NONE of their very large customer base that continues to subscribe to their service wants or believes in what MetroPCS is offering.
However, people like Karl will continue to post and make Metro look bad for what they're doing.. you know, because they don't offer things like tethering, or air cards, and their speeds are 3G-ish. (I dunno, maybe they wanted to take the step from EVDO to the next step, but really aren't out to push out really fast speeds, however, the LTE investment made sense as far as a deployment)
Here ya go, guys.. if things like tethering, or data cards, or fast speeds mean something to you, then go to Sprint, ATT, or Verizon and TMO and have at it.. MetroPCS isn't for you.
By the way, isn't the carrier that claims to have the fastest speeds AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, AND T-Mobile?