Mobile Broadband Prices Yikes!

My new laptop has mobile broadband capability, so I looked at the prices. I pay $400/mo for 1 megabit up/down at home (spread over a large number of devices, at least), so I was just seeing how bad it was out there.

Well, AT&T has a page here that indicates it would cost far more for me to go to mobile broadband for my laptop. That table indicates that there is no unlimited plan, and there are only three other choices. I homogenized the units to gigabytes (there are little KBs hiding in there!), and calculated the price of using 1GB through 50GB a month to see how bad it could be:

Cost/moAllowance (GB)Cost/GB15102050

I can only conclude that it makes no sense to buy any of these plans if you intend to do any significant work, play, or surfing on the Internet. Never buy the $20 plan for any reason, no matter what, since just surfing to a single web page could use up all of your monthly allowance, and $1,900/GB is pretty darned expensive. Compare that to the hourly activity of a 13-year-old girl and Farmville and you're bankrupt in no time.

A reasonable solution is a $100/mo unlimited plan. Frankly, the most reasonable approach is automatic upgrades to the next higher tier if you go over your limit. Until this is fixed, I cannot consider mobile broadband for a laptop.

Josh Poulson

Posted Thursday, Apr 22 2010 12:30 PM

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