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Friday Poll: Interested in Family Data Plans at Verizon?

Family data plans at Verizon may be right around the corner. Not only has their CEO mentioned that 2012 could be the year that we finally see them introduced, but over the last 6 or 7 months we have seen numerous changes to the way that accounts are handled. “Account level data plans” is how Big Red is referring to them for now, which basically means that all of our accounts are being prepped for the possibility of a pool of shared data. We aren’t sure if we are weeks or months away, but after talking to a couple of sources, it certainly seems like enough changes are happening that it could be sooner rather than later.

With that said, we want some feedback from the DL community to see if anyone is even interested in the idea of having an account level or shared data plan. If you aren’t sure what that means, think of it as a bucket of data that your entire family could pull from. Say you purchase a 5GB shared plan – the 3 or 4 lines on your account can all access that. Maybe you use 2GB, your daughter uses 1GB and someone else in your family pulls another couple of GBs in a month.

Now, we have no idea what pricing or data packages would look like. They could be 5GB and 10GB plans at astronomical prices for all we know. The idea behind shared data seems like (in theory) that it would be an option that targets consumers who are looking to spend less money on data. However, we all know Verizon’s track record and probably can’t find a person in the room that would consider them to offer “cheap” or “bottom line” prices on anything. Until something is announced or leaked into the wild, it’s tough to even guess how Big Red plans to approach this. As far as we know, this idea is new and has never been done before.


Interested in Family Data Plans at Verizon?

View Results

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  • 3 phones with unlimited data… No, I’m good thanks.

  • Anonymous

    Amazng that unlimited data is the only thing some people have going for them.

  • We need a third option. My wife and I are under my parents family shared plan. I have unlimited while my dad has limited. If a family data plan was available, then we could maybe afford to get a smartphone for my wife, but I’m not sacrificing my unlimited data.

  • Rain_king46

    They need a family unlimited option for those of us who are already grandfathered in…. Not that they would be that cool

  • Anonymous

    Since i discovered you can download torrents on android combined with lte using my gnex ive used 4.2gb of data in 20 days

  • DWM

    I’ll keep my unlimited 4G for $30/month thank you very much.

  • Anonymous

    only if they offer an unlimited plan!

  • Paul

    I have unlimited, and I’m the only one on my plan that wants data. So I’m out.

  • duke69111

    If I could get them all in on my unlimited plan I would be all for it, but I doubt that will happen. 

  • Evilgas

    I am unlimited also, but I would gladly trade that for a family plan where I could share with family of four.  The cost would be about $40 per phone ($160.00) a month with data plan and family plan right now.  If I could get into something for 50 to 75 bucks a month for the whole family, I would jump ship today.

  • Anonymous

    If I can get my wife’s data usage (~800MB/month), my data usage (~2GB/month when I have the battery juice), and add my mom and dad as well so they can finally get data on their phones all for less than $60/month, I will totally go for that.  In other words, if there is a 4-line family plan for $60 that gives me 3GB or more, I will sign up and give up unlimited data on my wife’s line and mine.

  • Anonymous

    Even though both me and the wife both have unlimited, I’d share 6GB+ if it was for less then $60.
    Anything bellow that amount of data or over that amount of money makes no sense whatsoever.

  • tyguy829

    Have had unlimited Family Data with verizon for over a year.  Life is good 🙂

    • Me too. My unlimited data on our 5-line family plan with all Android phones is $50 a month. There is no way they’ll be able to beat that.

      • Anonymous

        thats awesome

  • Bogy25

    WIfe has Rezound I have the Nexus and a Razr Maxx – both of us on Unlimited data plan – wouldn’t change it – life good

  • Kuboo99

    What phone are the people standing in line for in the picture?

    • Anonymous

      Idk but people look really stupid standing in line when there’s only a few people lol

  • It would be extremely beneficial for me, because it’s the only reason I don’t have a smartphone. My mom was grandfathered into unlimited data (She barely even hits 500MB/month) so getting a family plan of sharing 2GB across me and her would allow me to upgrade to the Droid 4. That, or we’ll just hope that the data deal still goes on once I have my upgrade. 

  • My problem will be that, like tethering, they’ll tell you that you need to pay $10/mo more or same price but less data to be able to use the same 2/4/5/10GB you’re already paying too much for.

    If I have tiered data and I pay $50 for 5 or 10GB, it should be mine to do with as I please, tether, share, whatever.  Instead they’ll give you 2 lines with 4GB for $50 or something that’s not really sharing.

  • Anonymous

    I have unlimited data so…no.

  • you

    $30 unlimited data.
    I’m fine with my solo price and everyone in my family minus my parents have it as well.

  • Anonymous

    Currently, no.  Both of us in our household have grandfathered unlimited plans, so I don’t see a reason for the foreseeable future where I’d be changing plans.

  • Would not be surprised to see Verizon use a shared data plan as an excuse to eliminate the remaining unlimited accounts.

    • Anonymous

      If they want to negate my contract, I’m cool with porting my number to Google Voice/Sprint.

  • It would all depend on plan policy and pricing.

    I could be interested but I also am happy with my grandfathered unlimited.

  • I pay $150 a month for five smartphones on one Verizon account. Four of the them are unlimited. If I could get 10GB for $100, that would still be more than enough and I’d save $50 bucks.

  • Dan

    It would be great if I could roll my tablet data plan into my smartphone unlimited plan. Don’t tHink it’ll happen because they’ll put so many limitations on it to make it valuable for only a few

  • Heh

    Yes, If I can share the unlimited data.

  • Sp4rxx

    The “yes” answer seems way to broad for a choice …. Technically the “right amount” could be said about ANYTHING …. data, minutes, txts, etc …..

    Then again, I am talking from an unlimited standpoint so I guess I am tainted ….

  • SteveP

    would love one.  could finally get the gf and i on the same account and hopefully pay LESS than a family account with 2 data plans.

  • Interstellarmind

    They better not mess with my grandfathered unlimited data because of this!!! Maybe they’ll let me keep my unlimited, and have my family squabble over the meager data GBs that’ll be affordable to get.

  • I think a shared plan would be good for a family such as mine where we pay 4*30 for 2GB plans that we rarely use more than half of. A 5 GB for 80$ a month would be great.

  • I have five separate data devices on my plan between myself and my family, so I’d LOVE a family shared data plan.

    (ps, the “tag links” in your posts are still really dumb looking)

  • Anonymous

    They offered me the family shared data plan last Jan  when I told them i was leaving for sprint. It was a good deal and I would have taken it, but I ended up saving more by taking the 2 lines i had, and added them to my brothers family plan on sprint.

    If I could go back I prob would have taken it. The headaches I’ve had and poor signal I have with sprint is barely worth the $50 a month I’m saving.

    • Yeah that sounds like the Talk & Text Plus Data promotional plan that I am on now. I maxed out all the lines I could to get the cheapest per-line price I could.

  • In my area we get a lot of customers that want a smartphone, but do not really need or want the data plan (odd I know but it’s our customer base). So if Verizon allows families to get say all smartphones and not require each one to have a data plan, then I can see this taking off and see “dumb” phones being eliminated.

    • QtDL

       Why exactly would one want a smartphone w/o data? You wouldn’t be able to use most of the smartphone’s features w/o it right?

      • They are just like, really small tablets

      • Anonymous

        Actually, I started off using smartphones without data plans.  I got tons of use out of them even without the data.

  • Anonymous

    I have 4 lines on my plan, 2 are grandfathered unlimited lines and the other two are basic lines, one of which could become a 4gb plan in 5 days when it hits it’s upgrade date. The issue here is that I use a minimum of 3gb of data a month depending on how much I travel with my transformer prime (rooted phone obviously), and my other line normally uses two because it is not rooted. I only wonder what the tier levels would be…if I could pay $40 a month to at most $50 for unlimited data across the board I would jump for it, but if it’s that silly 2,4,10 whatever they want to pretend to give us amount of data I’ll lead the charge on the next social media uprising.

  • as long as it doesnt mess up my unlimited data. I would get a iphone for my mom finally, if the price is right

  • The big question is whether or not Verizon’s family plans will be able to nudge people off of their unlimited plans.  Right now, I have a family plan and I have an unlimited plan and use a decent amount of data. The rest of my family has the cheapest tiered plan, and doesn’t use that much, so it would make more sense to be on a family data plan, but the real question is if its worth me kicking unlimited data.

    For those who feel this way, you can always proliferate your account from a family plan using an “account liabilty transfer” It lets you keep your contract but removes you from a family plan, so your family can get cheaper data rates (if they turn out to be cheaper) without you having to lose your unlimited plan.

  • The only acceptable price is a family data plan that has Unlimited data for all of the phones on the plan. We don’t need 5 separate $30 charges how about one $50 charge for all phones on the plan to get unlimited data. This won’t happen though.

    • Actually, it has happened. I am on this plan now, and it costs me $50 a month for all 5 lines to have unlimited 4G smartphone data.

  • QtDL

    No. I don’t like to share. Get your own data. 🙂

  • Anonymous

    We still have unlimited so i couldn’t care less, but for the right price I could see it being helpful to others.

  • A.M.

    This is how Verizon is going to price it:

    They are going to crunch the numbers, and price it so that most people who already have data will not save money. The only ‘savings’ will be pseudo-savings. It will come from the people who don’t have data plans now, but aren’t willing to pay $30/month per line to get it. That’s really a discount, and not savings, because you’re still spending more money than before.


    Pre-Family Data Plan

    You have 5 people on a family plan. 2 currently have data plans. The others want them, but aren’t willing to pay the $30 a month, but they might be willing to pay $10 a month. 

    Monthly Data Expenditure: $60 = $30*2

    Post-Family Data Plan

    Verizon introduces shared family data, for $50 a month for the account, plus $10 for each line besides the main line. Our family decides to get data for all five phones.

    Monthly Data Expenditure: $90 = $50 + 4*$10

    Difference in Revenue: $30 = $90-$60.

    50% Increase in Revenue. Pretty good for a service based on sunk costs and low marginal costs.

    I haven’t addressed data limits, but I’m sure the vast majority of subscribers will fall under the limit whatever it is, just like under the current system. It might be something like an extra $20 per month to increase the account from say, a 5 GB allowance to a 10 GB allowance, for a total of $110 for our family.

    The trickiest part is the phone upgrade. $400 upgrade subsidies are a little harder to sustain when you’re not charging $30 per month per line.

    • Anonymous

      Sounds about right.  I figured it that whatever they implemented; end the end it’s not going to be much (if any) cheaper for smaller family plans (2-3 lines).

  • I would consider a family data package if I could convert my unlimited plan to a family unlimited plan.

  • Bobby Jordan

    This will never be cheaper than individual data plans. Verizon isn’t going to make a change that will cost customers LESS money. They already see the writing on the wall in terms of declining texting revenues, that’s why they got rid of the smaller (cheaper) texting plans)

    The only way I can see this ever saving money is if Verizon switches to an all data based system and gets rid of voice/texts amounts completely. You could then purchase 2 GB of data and use that allowance for all your usage, which all your usage is data based now, they just don’t present it that way. 

  • The key here is the right price and right amount of data. I voted yes, mainly because there are other on my family plan that want to get smartphones, but do not want to pay for the whole data package. Family data has to be a good deal. And with that said, I now have unlimited data, so I am going to be very reluctant to switch from it for something like 2GB at the same price.

  • Anonymous

    So the numbers from July (first one I could find from a known company) are the average android user uses 600 MB a month, of course that was before LTE.  So even if the average (read not typical DL user) user is up to a GB/month there are a lot of people would could stand to save money with this type of plan if priced right, especially with 3+ lines.


  • Anonymous

    I’m not good at sharing. :-/

  • Dliuzzo110

    I think this is a way to get people to use less data by pitting family’s against each other like a pack of wolves fighting over a kill

  • Rick

    I said yes, since I have 3 smartphones (2 unlimited, 1 tiered) on my family plan and paying $90 a month is silly. Now, if 5GB lets say for $60 I would switch over without signing up for another 2 years.

  • DB

    Only if I can roll everyone onto my current unlimited plan

  • Anonymous

    Add a choice for “Doesn’t make a difference, I’m grandfathered into unlimited”

    • Zachary Manville

      thats where im sitting, but id like to pay $15 to dip into that for my tablet.

      • Anonymous

        Now that’s a pickle.  why not just tether though?

        • Chris G

          We have a winner.  Cheaper tablet that way too.

        • illz

          Because it’s a hassle to grab your phone, launch the app, choose the wifi on your tablet versus always-on, you have to have your phone with you at all times, and it drains your phone’s battery. My phone is essential, I can’t run it down to nothing. My tablets are for entertainment so don’t matter.

          • Anonymous

            Spend money once on a second battery, instead of a monthly family plan

          • illz

            Tablets are toys of convenience – toys most of us have and like. The question was “why not just tether” – because I want my toys to be simple, hassle-free, fun, fast, and perfect. Why settle for anything less than that on something that isn’t a necessity? It’s not fun to tether crap through my phone versus them just working on their own. So that’s why.

          • Anonymous

            Guess you’re OK with paying for a data plan then?

          • Anonymous

            sounds like your just lazy, plug the phone in

          • illz

            If I could just plug the phone in I’d be at my home or office with wifi and no need for any other connection on the tablet.

            The question was “why not?” If that answer “sounds like you’re just lazy”, then why tablet at all? Bring a laptop. Walk over to your computer. Muck through it on your little phone screen.

            Don’t be an idiot.

    • This may be true for most of us (including me), but you won’t have unlimited forever so this affects us all.

    • Anonymous

      I would love to share my unlimited data with the rest of my family…possible?

    • My dad is grandfathered in… so I would love to also have unlimited LTE…

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  • thefullritz

    YES…My daughter and I have 2gb/4gb each at$30.  The only reason I don’t upgrade my wife from a dumb phone is the cost, then I have 2 more daughters.  5 lines…..My bill is already $240 with 2 smart, 3 dumb phones.

  • Binjermin

    Absolutely.  I’m paying for 3x$30 data plans right now (1 Droid X + 2 BB’s) and have never gone over 2GB, TOTAL.  If I could pay $50 for 3GB shared I would do it without a second thought.  40 bucks is 40 bucks.

  • Ciggy

    I voted no because I still have unlimited data and hoping I can manage to keep it for a long time to come.

  • Chris G

    Simply put, i have unlimited mobile data.  No way will VZ give me that to pair with my wife (without a data and without a data need)

    • Anonymous

      But what happens if the 10 GB plan is cheaper than your two plans and between you and your wife you use less than 10GB?
      At some point Verizon will likely either remove unlimited from everyone or give it back to everyone, they’re not going to have both forever.  So would you not save money now (assuming it is cheaper) just to say you have unlimited?

      • Anonymous

        its pretty common practice for the carriers to let u keep your current plan virtually forever.  i used to work at us cellular and see plans that were 10-15 years old all the time. i think the reality is most people with unlimited dont use more than the current plans anyways. however if every unlimited customer was using 50gb a month it would definitely change.  i dont see verizon being bought by another company either but who knows down the road. rim looked invincible 10 years ago, of course they arent a service provider and relied on their products which change faster than service does.

        • Anonymous

          Well I was more referring to “average” users.  Of course if you’re a streaming or downloading fiend it won’t make sense.

          • Anonymous

            as was I, did u read it lol

          • Anonymous

            I guess I misread, thought you were correcting me

      • Chris G

        I see the point, and yes double the $50 5gb plan now is $50 for 10 if that was shared it would be cheaper for her to get in, but i personally still have the issue she thinks she doesnt need it.  i think it would help her, but not fighting that battle… i stick to easier stuff like why she cleans the house and does the laundry.  ones i can win.

        • Anonymous

          lol, sound exactly like me and my wife.  She fought it for months  because of the month cost and now can’t live without it.  The only reason I got her to do it as I got her to get on a friend’s family plan so her cost didn’t go up much.  

          Mine is through my company so I’m more interested in cutting costs as when I look at the bill most of the users don’t even use 500 MB.

  • The family plan is what the tiered data plans SHOULD be but as I’ve said every time I’ve discussed Tiered Data Plans so far, it only works if the plans are reasonable. I have absolutely no faith in VZW making the plans reasonable. It’ll probably start at like $150 for a 10GB of data (remember, a 2GB plan costs $30), which is simply pointless when a single line 10GB plan costs $80. (this ignores the double data plan)

  • Anonymous

    I think the common assumption is unlimited will eventually go away.  So with that in mind I would give up unlimited if it could save me money now based on my current usage.

  • If they can beat $49.95/m for unlimited data on 5 lines, I’ll look into it. Until then, I’m good.

    • Yeah, I think they’ll be hard pressed to offer a deal any better. I am glad I got in on that deal cause it was too awesome to pass up.

  • Anonymous

    So is the picture supposed to illustrate that people are waiting out in the cold overnight to sign up for family data plans?

  • Anonymous

    For those of us Grandfathered into Unlimited there isn’t much that is going to sway us away, family plan or not.  I do like the idea of hybrdizing the plans.  Keeping 1-2 phones who have unlimited on their own data contract while getting a family data plan for the other 2 devices that do not have unlimited data.

    • Anonymous

      I agree.  I will never get rid of my unlimited plan, they will have to pry it from my cold, dead hands.  Even if something saved me a couple bucks a month I wouldn’t let it go, I just love the fact that I do not have to worry at all about data usage.  One month I may use 2GB and then the next I may use 10GB.  I’m in AZ and once it’s over a 100 deg again then pandora will be streaming for hours on end at the pool.  Don’t wanna be like “sorry guys, i hit my data limit”.  Keep the party going!

  • No because even the Family plans are overpriced and limited data

  • illz

    I’m confused. Isn’t this as much about having shared data for multiple devices as multiple individuals? I thought that was the main drive of this. I don’t want a 4G tablet data plan and a phone data plan, I want one data plan that both use.

  • Michael Forte

    Nah, unlimited data works just fine for me.

    • Anonymous

      Indeed.  Me and my wife are still on unlimited data.  If we were on a tiered plan though, then I think this would be good because she stays at home on WiFi all day and hardly uses 100 MBs/month, so that would give me the rest of the data to myself (hopefully at least 3-4 GBs on the cheapest/$30 plan).

      But if Verizon ever forces me out of unlimited data, then I won’t hesitate to defect to Sprint.

      • Well Sprint will eventually be moving to tiered as well, It’s a no brainer, everyone else has. Eventually they will too. Especially with the onslaught of LTE in their future.

        • Anonymous

          Yes, I expect that too, but if Verizon kicks us off of our unlimited data, I hope they do it before Sprint kills theirs.  Then we can ride out unlimited for as long as we can until hopefully carriers start selling bandwidth by speed caps instead of total data caps since infrastructure should be able to support a lot more by then.

          • Anonymous

            Speed caps!  Pure genius.

  • Anonymous

    I’m interested in saving money, if family plan can do that (yeah, right) then I’m interested in it.

    • Michael Forte

      Saving money and Verizon are two things that are never synonymous. 

      • Anonymous

        Only when Verizon is followed by a past tense verb.

  • Anonymous

    With VOIP we won’t have a choice in a couple years.  I would like to get rid of minutes and just have data.  No texting or anything, all roll through data.  Then put it at tiers from there similar to the minute structure.

    •  No it should be more like what T-Mobile is trying to do. Unlimited everything for 1 price. Not by usage. It doesnt not cost these companies any more for you to have unlimited data vs 2g its the same when it comes back and forth through the lines.

    • Anonymous

      Unlimited data + Google Voice + GrooVeIP = what you want

  • Agreed.  It would have to be a family unlimited plan for under $60.  

  • Jeff Simpson

     Now that Unlimited plans are no longer being offered, I can see a draw for wanting to offer shared data plans. I’m sure there are some people on a family plan that have some smart phones and some dumbphones just because they don’t want to spend the extra $30 each/month. I bet they could convince a lot of them to get smartphones if the data were cheaper per-person on a family plan.

    I voted for no, though, because I’m on my own plan. If I had a wife and kids I’d probably like the idea of a shared plan, though.

    • Anonymous

      I use about 7GB a month, and my wife uses about 1GB. A 10GB plan would be something we could use (then again, I doubt I’ll drop my unlimited plan).

  • Anonymous

    I would consider a family plan but I am in an Unlimited plan already. I cannot change.

  • Anonymous

    2 lines, $60/month, Unlimited data, nuff said

  • I sure am OK with mine solo… as it is unlimited… Unless they decided to do a family unlim… oh wait why would they do that