AT&T subscribers will require data plan with smartphone purchase

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Why would anyone want a smartphone without a data plan? That’s like buying a Ferrari with a Ford engine. Sure, the device looks stylish, but you need data to unlock the true power of your BlackBerry. Anyways, preaching to the converted.

As of September 6th, 2009, AT&T will begin requiring that all smartphones sign up for a smartphone data plan. Customers who activated their smartphones prior to September 6th, may continue to carry around a BlackBerry as a status symbol while not taking advantage of their device’s awesome powers. That last part should have been included in the official email.

  • steviedub
    I am legally blind. I use the "talking" menu program on my HTC smart phone to navigate. Why would I need the internet just to make calls and text? If there were more variety of phones that could be loaded with this program, I would certainly have bought one. The salesperson recommended this model to me for this reason, and now I have to find an unlocked version and pay full price for ANOTHER phone. Thanks AT&T.; As soon as my contract is done, I'm out.
  • SuperV
    Uhm, hellooo? WiFi? Easy texting? Applications? Size factor?

    I am a) complaining to the FCC; and b) voting with my feet (i.e., closing my AT&T; account)
  • SuperV
    Uhm, hellooo? WiFi? Easy texting? Applications? Size factor?

    I am a) complaining to the FCC; and b) voting with my feet (i.e., closing my AT&T; account)
  • Lynn
    The reason some people want a "Smartphone" w/o a Data Plan is that Palm no longer makes PDAs. When the PDAs we have, stop working, we want the capabilities of our PDA in our cell phones. I don't need internet and email access, just a phone and a PDA, without the extra cost of a Plan I will get no use from.
  • Robert
    There's always the option of buying a Smartphone unlocked, and then using it without data. But in that case it'll cost a ton of extra money. I was surprised when I heard the news of this too.. I wish it didn't happen, but I'm thinking about keeping my current Curve even after my contract expires and renewing. Maybe by then AT&T will have REDUCED data plans instead of $30 a month..
  • Koni
    Like most others I love my Blackberry Curve for the apps and non data features. I had the data plan at first and found absolutely no use for it. If I want the web I can turn on my laptop or desktop. I want to keep my Curve but it's 2 years old and I know it wont last forever. I've looked for non-smart phones to replace it - nothing doing.

    Maybe Blackberry will come to our rescue, AT&T could not care less about us.
  • SirAthos
    Simply leave AT&T. They are nothing without customers.

    And yes, it makes a whole lot of sense to have a smartphone without a data plan.
  • Dell

    No, they won't shut your phone off but sooner or later your contract will run out or you will need a new phone and then they got you.

    That's is why everyone needs to contact the BBB and let them know what you think.
  • Dell

    You hit the nail on the head greed is what it's all about and I am surprise company's like Blackberry and others like them would allow this as it cuts in to their profits of maybe they are part of the problem because this is a way for them to get there low end phones on the market.

    I would like to hear what you think.
  • Dell
    Jason I am with you, if all I want is to text and keep up with my appointment that should be just fine.

    And can you believe some of the reason the company's are giving you about why you have to have a data plan.
  • Dell
    That is what I say, why would I want to pay for something that takes five minute to load, if I am in my office I can browse the web then, is I am at home I can browse the web there and if I am in between and need to find a place to eat then I can use my GPS and if I need to browse the internet then I should go to the library not drive and try to browse the web like most people do now, and if I need to browse the internet then l go to a Starbucks and wipe out my laptop.

    My point is we have choices we don't need to be forced into something else that we don't want or need.

    Or for that matter more choices..........
  • Dell
    I think this type of tactics should be turned over to the Better Business Bureau, what do you think?
  • Dell
    This is just another way for the cell phone company's to make money. They are not happy until they are getting $100.00 from every customer. I say if a person wants to carry around a smart-phone and just use it for text and his appointments then that should be just fine. But to force a customer to buy something they don't need is absurd.

    This is American we have choices if I want to go buy a mustang with a six cylinder engine that is my choice. The sales person should not say this is a muscle car and you have to buy it with a eight cylinder if not we are going to still charge you for the six cylinder engine at the eight cylinder price.
  • Lorraine
    I too don't have the data plan. When I went to talk to ATT about turning off the data plan if I got it and decided not to keep it. I was told that I would soon get a text message saying that I will soon be required to get the data plan if I keep my BB. Has anyone else heard this? I don't see how they can MAKE me take it if I don't want it.
  • Lexiluvr
    I have been a LOOONG time customer of AT&T, through the BellSouth Mobility and Cingular years. I am now very angry and may drop all 5 lines because of the FORCED data plan with the purchase of a new PDA. Like many of the other responders I use my PDA daily and love the many applications/programs I have installed and the utility function of it. I have a Palm Centro and DO NOT have or want the data plan. I tried it for about a week and like someone posted above, it was incredibly slow and frustrating to use so I canceled it. I do like the idea of having wifi (which my Centro does not have) so I wanted to upgrade to a Blackberry 8900...AT&T will not sell me one unless I pay them an additional $30.00/month for a service I do not want. There seems to be only one leave AT&T. They have shown that as a customer I mean nothing to them. Their weak argument to justify the strong arm tactic is that some customers were going over their allocated data usage and were getting huge bills, so they decided that everyone who gets a new PDA must have the unlimited data plan for $30.00/month. It was implemented to PROTECT the customers....I say BULLSH|T. All they had to do was NOT OFFER THE limited data plan...problem solved. The data and texting functions are disabled on my phone so there is NO danger of me getting into trouble. At this point I think AT&T SUCKS.
    att sucks.. just like everything else they do, they will nickel and dime consumers down to the last penny. Just like any att customer whether its landline to wireless, they will blow smoke up your a$$ to keep their pockets fat and i mean FAT. All this browsing on pda's is way over-rated. I can see the email function to be very useful especially for business but everything else as far as browsing sucks.. You cant even use flash on most pda's and why not. Just watch, how much you wanna bet when or once they get all these users to sign up for data plans it will eventually eat up their bandwidth and not be as fast as they say it is. We the comsumers should have options.. apparentlty we dont even have that let alone customer service...
  • JosephM
    No question that they want to lock up the iphone. I can understand this, as they eat most of the phones cost. Especially with the iphone, I don't see why they force a data plan down our throat. I would love to have one, but would only use Wifi for broadband access. I'll bet there are more than a few like me who would do the same if they could.

    I actually carry around an iPod touch much of the time for this reason. The Blackjack is a better phone, and it has way better battery life than an iphone. Unfortunately, comparing media features with it and just about any other phone with an iphone is pathetic. Samsung is too stupid to even put a standard headphone jack on these things.
  • Blotto
    So.....i guess you cant just buy an iphone, unlock it and book it on over to tmo anymore? IMHO, thats what they are trying to battle.
  • JosephM
    I definitely agree with EvanM about data fees. I'd suggest that all tier one carriers are engadged in price fixing. Why does every single one charge no less than $30 per month for data.

    Yes, I know some tier 2 companies like boost have a cheaper rate. Problem is that none of the phones offered by these conpanies are anywhere near a smartphone. Otherwise, I would swich in a heartbeat!
  • EvanM
    AT&T once again getting too big for their britches. Maybe Congress needs to split them up like Ma Bell was years ago. I will never sign another two-year extension. Verizon starting to like better all the time. $30.00 per month when I have to pay 45.00 per month for broadband at home is ridiculous!
  • murphythadog
    I don't see why people can't have choices.
  • JosephM
    This is a common misconception that smartphones are useless without data connectivity. In fact, I use mine to sync with Outlook calendar, contacts, and tasks via activesync on my blackjack II. I know others who do just as I do, and have no data plan either.

    True, there is functionality we may not be using, but this is a very important function to me, and you can't get it on anything other than a "smartphone".
  • Phreqd
    I'm wondering what they're going to do if you don't opt-in. Shut your phone off? Does that get you out of the contract?
  • TellasWoods (Tellas Woods)
    I knew this was coming ATT CSTRS- RT @BlackBerryCool: ATT subscribers will require data plan with smartphone purchase
  • GeorgeOkk (George Okpamen)
    RT @BlackBerryCool: ATT subscribers will require data plan with smartphone purchase
  • BlackBerryCool (BlackBerry Coo
    ATT subscribers will require data plan with smartphone purchase
  • Mini
    True that the BlackBerry (or any smartphone for that matter) doesn't reach its full potential without a data plan, but they could always fall back on WiFi, which AT&T phones provide. And so, I think greed has motivated AT&T to require a data plan, not convenience.
  • Jason
    The deaf smart phones for their texting capability. If all they want is a communication device they should not be charged for the data plan only a texting plan.....
  • Gabriel
    Awesome power? Like having to wait 5 minutes for a simple web page to load on the "awesome" browser?
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