Tag Archives: data

Verizon Wireless XLTE Now Available in 300+ Markets

Great news for Verizon Customers who love fast data speeds. Verizon Wireless is bringing its recently announced XLTE to 50 additional markets, which makes the total number of markets nationwide where enhanced capacity through XLTE is available to more than 300.

Verizon Wireless XLTE operates on the 1700/2100 MHz frequency.  It is a supplement to Verizon Wireless’ existing 4G LTE network and the next step in ensuring high-speed data speeds for VZW customers.

XLTE enables a more mobile lifestyle for customers by doubling the bandwidth and delivering faster peak speeds to XLTE-ready devices, which currently number more than 28.  Average XLTE throughput speeds are in the range of 5 to 12 MBPS on the download, and 2 to 5 MBPS on the upload.

My findings have been very consistent with VZW’s states speeds. Here is a recent report that I conducted at my office this week:

To learn more about XLTE from Verizon, visit XLTE by the Numbers and Introducing XLTE.

Big Data and Privacy: Paradoxes and Opportunities

Last week the Future of Privacy Forum and Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet and Society hosted a highly interactive meeting of the minds to discuss the most significant challenges to and opportunities for harnessing big data both effectively and ethically. For those who were able to attend, we got to participate in spirited debates about the roles of the private sector, government, consumers and privacy advocates alike in structuring workable standards that respect the privacy of those whose data is being collected, analyzed and, hopefully, protected. For those who were unable to make it, here are four big takeaways that represent the state of the dialogue and what we can expect as this hot topic plays out among decision makers and academics with a stake in the future of big data:

  1. No one can agree on how to produce standards for privacy and data analysis. Participants at the conference highlighted the fact that significant disagreement remains about the value of the data itself. Indeed, various schools of thought assign the value within the data analysis process elsewhere, essentially placing much higher value on the inferences drawn from the data, rather than the raw data. The dialogue here turns very scientific, but suffice to say, a long road lies ahead as researchers, lawmakers, businesses and regulatory bodies map out a standardized way of discussing big data and all of the associated outcomes of data analysis.

T-Mobile’s ‘Simple Choice’ Plans May Be onto Something

Last week, the nation’s fourth largest cellular provider announced a radical new model for wireless service pricing. T-Mobile customers now have the option of going “off-contract” (kind of) and take advantage of aggressive pricing that beats anything Verizon, AT&T and Sprint can offer.

All of the new “Simple Choice” plans begin with the unlimited voice and text messaging and pricing will vary depending on how much data you need. Erik has highlighted the new plans but just to recap, starting at $50/ month, you get 500MB of high-speed data with rates throttled to 2G speeds after you hit that limit. Heavier data users can add an additional 2GB of unthrottled data for an extra $10/month. 2GB of data not enough you say? For $70/month, you can get unlimited 4G data.  A second line will run another $30 on top of that, with each additional line costing $10 each.

Throttled data sucks and I am guessing rather than simply charge customers the extra $10 for 2GB of data, they want people to suffer long enough to upgrade their plan to the $70/month plan. But at the end of the day, either tier of pricing still offers customers a lot of value at an unbeatable price.

Not only is T-Mobile offering great pricing and flexibility in their rate plans, they are also spending a good chunk of the $3 billion they received from AT&T after their failed takeover merger on network enhancements and building out their LTE network. During its initial launch, T-Mobile will be lighting up LTE in seven markets including Baltimore, MD; Kansas City, KS; Houston, TX; Las Vegas, NV; Phoenix, AZ; San Jose, CA and our hometown of Washington D.C. Data speeds on this new network should range between 10 to 20Mbps down and 8 to 12 Mbps for uploads. The suite of devices that will be available on T-Mobile’s LTE network include the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S 4, Galaxy Note II, BlackBerry Z10 and iPhone 5. That’s right. The last piece of huge news that came out of T-Mobile’s UnCarrier event is that they finally sealed the deal with Apple to sell the iPhone.

Even better, the cost of owning an iPhone on T-Mobile is less than any other network. Here is a chart from Zagg that compares the cost of owning an iPhone on T-Mobile versus its main competitors of Verizon, AT&T and Sprint.

iPhone comparison

With all of this news from T-Mobile, it is clear they are making a huge push against its competition. They have seen too many customers leaving for cheaper options and these new Simple Choice plans are the perfect solution. Not only will T-Mobile see a higher retention of current customers, it is safe to assume that they will begin to grow their customer base at the expense of Verizon, AT&T and Sprint with a majority coming from the latter two carriers. An April Fool’s joke this surely is not. T-Mobile is for real.

More mobile devices activated on Christmas than any day in history

We just wanted to get a quick note about a new report that came out yesterday from Flurry Analytics which states that Christmas 2012 was a record day for mobile device activations. In fact, more iOS and Android devices were activated on December 25 than any other day in history.

Verizon share everything data plans go live today

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As a public service, it is important to note that Verizon Wireless subscribers can now sign up for the new “Share Everything” data plan for smartphones and tablets; a feature many Verizon Wireless customers (including me) have been wanting for a long time.Announced earlier this month, this plan offers users on a family plan a plethora of options to share not only minutes and text with each other, but now data as well; a first in the cellular industry.

“When developing these plans, we first asked customers what they wanted in a wireless service plan,” says Tami Erwin, vice president and chief marketing officer for Verizon Wireless. “We also looked at the technology and how customers were using it to manage their lives. And last, we took into consideration the evolution of the technology and how customers would use wireless in the future.”

To get started on a Share Everything Plan, customers first select the devices they want on their accounts. Then, choose a plan that includes unlimited minutes, unlimited messages and a shared data allowance that begins at 1GB for $50. If you are like me and need more than 1GB of data, you can get 2GB for $60, 4GB for $70, 6GB for $80, 8GB for $90 and a whopping 10GB for $100.

These data plans can be shared with up to 10 devices including tablets. Customers adding a tablet on their Share Everything Plan can do so for an additional $10, with no long-term contract requirement.

Potential customers of the Share Everything Plan can calculate their estimated cost of ownership by using this nifty tool courtesy of Verizon.

For what it is worth, I calculated what my monthly usage would be for two devices with comparable minutes/text usage and a 5GB shared data plan and I would save roughly $10 each month if I made the switch. Add in an extra tablet and the savings are increased even further.

Learn more about Verizon’s Share Everything Plan here.