Sprint adding a $10 dollar data charge on all smartphones


Been thinking about getting yourself a shiny new EVO? Well, be prepared to add an extra $10 on your monthly data plan. That’s right folks, Sprint has announced that they are adding a $10 dollar data charge on ALL smartphones in addition to whatever phone plan you decide to go with.

So, why the extra coin? Sprint is saying it will assist them “in offering simple and affordable unlimited plans for its customers while maintaining a wireless network able to meet the growing appetite for a richer mobile experience.” Basically they’re pulling the ‘ol “bandwidth is expensive, so we’re going to charge you more” card.

Continue after the break for the full presser, and leave us a comment and share your thoughts about this rate hike.

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (BUSINESS WIRE), January 18, 2011 – Today’s ability to do more things on the go – such as watching videos, sharing pictures or checking directions – is not only changing the way we live; it is driving exponential growth of mobile data traffic.

Sprint (NYSE: S) is committed to providing its customers a great wireless experience now and in the future. From its packed portfolio of innovative phones and devices to its leadership in introducing 4G services, to its consumer-friendly Everything Data plans, featuring unlimited text, Web and calling to any mobile phone, Sprint offers the best value in wireless.

Sprint will increase its postpaid rates by applying a $10 per month Premium Data add-on charge to activations of smartphones beginning Jan. 30. The charge will assist Sprint in offering simple and affordable unlimited plans for its customers while maintaining a wireless network able to meet the growing appetite for a richer mobile experience. Subscribers with smartphones will still receive the best value in wireless, including the Any Mobile, Anytime feature offered nationwide only by Sprint.

Sprint also offers a full range of traditional feature phones, including popular eco-friendly or touch-screen handsets that do not require the Premium Data add-on charge but still have a great range of capabilities with voice, text and data access. Existing Sprint smartphone customers are not affected unless they upgrade to or activate another smartphone.

“Sprint wants its customers to experience the range of entertainment and productivity possibilities available with today’s wireless technology,” said Bob H. Johnson, president of Sprint’s consumer business. “While some of our competitors impose overage charges and complex plans, Sprint continues to provide a worry-free, unlimited data experience while on the Sprint network. This is responsible, sustainable and reflects our commitment to simplicity and value.”

“Sprint’s decision to apply the Premium Data add-on charge to activations of smartphones going forward recognizes the enhanced user experience that today’s smartphones deliver, which, in turn, drives substantially higher data usage and cost,” said Roger Entner, analyst and founder of Recon Analytics.

“Building, maintaining and expanding wireless data networks isn’t free – there are real costs involved. In effect, Sprint has chosen to increase the price of its unlimited Everything Data plans, which is still below that of its major competitors, for the segment of customers – smartphone users – who are using wireless data the most and are driving up costs. Consumers have many choices. They can choose unlimited, worry-free data plans on the Sprint network or they can have tiered, metered plans and overage charges with other wireless carriers.”

Smartphone customers use, on average, 10 times more data than users of traditional feature phones. Smartphone users have access to more data capabilities, applications and other functionality than traditional feature phones. Examples include access to thousands of applications and games through online marketplaces and full HTML Web browsing with Adobe Flash technology that allows users to browse the Internet on their devices just like they can at home or in the office.

Sprint defines smartphones as devices with robust operating systems that deliver a rich wireless experience by bringing the full function of mobile applications and programs to life, including Blackberry, Android, Windows Mobile, Palm, and the Instinct family of devices. The Premium Data add-on charge previously applied to HTC EVO 4G, HTC EVO Shift 4G and Samsung Epic 4G devices.

“Sprint continues to be the carrier for people who want to do more than just talk with their wireless devices,” said Johnson. “Customer growth on our 3G and 4G networks, exponential increases in the use of mobile data applications, and the growing use of smartphones is proof that consumers are getting the message.

“Sprint’s unlimited data plans, with or without the $10 charge, continue to beat the offerings of our top national competitors, who cap users’ data, charge data overages, and do not offer the unique functionality of Any Mobile, Anytime, which gives subscribers on the Sprint network unlimited calling to any other wireless user in America regardless of carrier.”

About Sprint Nextel

Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications servicesbringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextelserved more than 48.8 million customers at the end of the third quarter of 2010 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, Common Cents Mobile and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 6 in its 2010 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprintandwww.twitter.com/sprint.

  • Jonny

    They already had the $10 charge for Evo. Fairly sure that it doesn’t go up. This just screws over the customers who want a low end Android phone and ups that charge.

  • ChumbleSpuzz


  • EPPack

    On top of the extra 10 bucks they already force us to pay for 4G service even tho we don’t live, travel to or work in a 4G area? Good grief! Sheesh. Thank goodness we already have our Evos activated.

  • I already pay a bloody $10 premium for having an Evo. They do this and I’ll be ditching Sprint as soon as I find where some of the new phones are going to that I’m interested in. How sad….

  • Vanessa

    I sell Sprint. You’re not getting another $10 charge on top of the $10 you already pay for having a 4g phone. This article is misleading. What’s happened is now the $10 extra charge isn’t JUST on the 4g phones (evo, shift, epic), it’s on all the smartphones (phones with a real operating system like android or blackberry). So in other words, if you have an Evo, your bill isn’t changing. If you have a low end android phone like an optimus and even do so much as exchange it for another optimus, you’re going to be paying an extra $10 a month like the people who have evo’s and epic’s already do.

  • Jaime Ajanel

    i have a blackberry 8330 , i want to get a newer one , they want to charge me 10 bucks ! wtf !! im waiting for my contract to be over . im going to switch carrier !!! seee yaaaa’ , charging 10 bucks for a non 4g phone , thats the new and legal way to steal money from the customers !!!

  • Jeff cowan

    I have the epic and pay the 10dollars extra a month.when.i seen what this phone can do,i can understand why sprint is charging this fee.it can run 10times the data my palm pre could.for this phone that can be like a small computer and a entertainment device I do not mind the 10 dollar fee. If you do not want to pay the fee do not buy a highend smartphone.

  • Tim Jones

    What if you are on a shared plan..im on a plan with my dad…we had everything messaging in 2010 but in feb he upgraded his phone to the samsung intercept..and now we have everything data 1500..i have a touch pro but didnt have data on it until my dad upragded in feb of 2011..im now eligble for an upgrade and want the evo..will there be an extra 10 dollar charge to the bill?