In an attempt to keep pace with competing data plans, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) finally ramped up its prepaid plans with more data. For a monthly charge of $45, Verizon now provides 2GB of data, up from the previous offering of 1GB. The company’s $60 a month plan offers 5GB of data now up from 3GB earlier. The $30 prepaid plan provides unlimited talk as well as text but only permits data usage when linked to Wi-Fi.
On top these data boosts, Verizon’s prepaid users can get an additional 500MB by paying $5. Shelling out $10 and $20 will give them 1GB and 3GB of data respectively. All of the modified prepaid plans will have unlimited voice and text. If users opt for automatic payments, Verizon will give an extra gigabyte of data.
Similar moves from T-Mobile Us Inc (NYSE:TMUS) and AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) were inevitable given Verizon’s declaration that it was providing additional data on its prepaid plan. In terms of pricing, Verizon’s prepaid plans are the same as AT&T’s GoPhone offerings.
But, T-Mobile’s prepaid offerings are cheaper with users being provided free music as well as video streaming apart from their monthly quota. The company’s prepaid plans also have free data roaming in Canada and Mexico. Verizon’s prepaid plans offer unlimited texting to the two nations along with Puerto Rico.
As users look out for better and lower-priced rate plans, prepaid service providers are becoming more popular. Carriers are regularly introducing more data and features in attempting to retain present users and attract new ones.
Verizon last changed its prepaid plans in November when it raised the data allotment for its $60 per month plan from 2GB a month to 3GB a month. The company has had continued problems in its prepaid business posting 157,000 cumulative user losses from that category in the fourth quarter of 2015 which comes after the loss of 80,000 users in the third quarter of that year.
However rivals T-Mobile and AT&T have done well in the prepaid subscribers segment. AT&T and its Cricket prepaid division added 469,000 users in the fourth quarter of 2015. Interestingly, T-Mobile and its MetroPCS prepaid division also added the same number of users in the same time period. Verizon did better than Sprint Corp (NYSE:S) which lost 491,000 prepaid users in the final 3 months of 2015.