Verizon pulled back into unlimited-data game

Sprint vs T-Mobile

The unlimited data plan wars just got real ugly. And, because this was all so predictably "carrier" of them, the Un-carrier was ready.

Verizon is trying to differentiate itself by letting customers watch high-definition video with the unlimited plan, while competitors run streaming video at DVD-level quality. After that, it's back down to 3G speeds until you're into a new billing cycle.

This means two lines are $140 per month, three are $160, and four are $180. Additionally, customers must use AutoPay.

The US wireless carrier-one of the nation's largest-eliminated unlimited data plans for new customers in favor of usage-based offerings back in 2011, as it and other carriers struggled to cope with customers' skyrocketing data usage. So while technically you're eventually going to get your 4G data, there may be 50 people in front of you, and until they're all doing what they're doing, you're not getting anything.

Prior to Verizon's announcement, the T-Mobile ONE plan offered unlimited hotspot data that was limited to 2G speeds, with an option to pay for 5GB of data for an additional $15 per month. Sprint charges for HD video under its premium unlimited plan, which at $70 monthly for one line is cheaper than Verizon's plan.

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AT&T now only sells unlimited data plans to customers who also subscribe to the company's DirecTV or U-Verse TV service.

Verizon says it rolled out the unlimited data plan because its network can handle the influx of customers and "we fundamentally want you to have more choice", said Ronan Dunne, president of Verizon's wireless division.

But Sprint and T-Mobile recognized in unlimited data an opportunity to snare customers from heavyweights Verizon and AT&T. T-Mobile has not given specific details on the new resolution that'll be available to ONE subscribers, but "HD" likely equates to 720p. Sales tax & regulatory fees included in monthly price. May not be combinable with bill credit device offers. As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc.

Verizon's plan goes up to 22Giga Bites.

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