By Jared Newman, PCWorld
Published:Jan 20, 2011 8:09 AM
Great news! Starting Jan. 23, AT&T will reportedly funnel all of its new subscribers into a $10 per month, 1,000-text message plan, or its $20 unlimited plan.
Finally, freedom from the tyranny of choice! That $5 per month, 200-message plan that gave you just the right amount of texts every month? Too stressful. The $15 per month, 1,500-message plan that gave heavy texters a way to save money? Not unlimited enough.
If I may remove my thin layer of sarcasm for a moment, how stupid do wireless carriers think we are?
According to a leaked AT&T memo published by Gear Live, AT&T is making the changes to “streamline” its services and “K.I.S.S. — keep it simple, silly.”
This is the second report this week about wireless carriers extracting more money from their customers in the name of “simplicity.” Sprint, in raising its smartphone data rates by $10 to meet data demand, offered a similar explanation for why it isn’t creating optional lower data tiers:
“While some of our competitors impose overage charges and complex plans, Sprint continues to provide a worry-free (emphasis mine) unlimited data experience while on the Sprint network,” Bob Johnson, president of Sprint’s consumer business, said. “This is responsible, sustainable and reflects our commitment to simplicity (emphasis again mine) and value.”
Maybe I have too much faith in the American people, but I don’t think we need to be forced into more expensive service plans for the sake of our fragile little minds. If AT&T offers me a few text messaging options, I’m clever enough to look at my usage history to decide which plan works best. If Sprint were to offer, say, a 2 GB data plan for $10 cheaper, Im sure a significant number of customers would snatch it up without a single anxiety attack.
So please, wireless carriers, don’t treat us like idiots. If you want to tweak your service plans to make more money, just say so, or announce the changes without embellishment and get out of the way. It’s just that simple, silly.
Is Jared Newman from PCWorld right?
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