Today AT&T announced changes to its Cricket Wireless prepaid plans. Effective Sunday Nov. 5:
- The $ 30/month unlimited talk, messaging and data plan will get 2 GB instead of 1 GB of high speed data per month.
- The $ 40/month unlimited talk, messaging and data plan will get its high speed data allowance increased from 4 GB to 5 GB
- The $ 55 Unlimited 2 plan and 2 for $ 80/mo Unlimited promotion are returning for a “limited time”.
As before, Unlimited 2 includes unlimited talk, messaging and “high speed” data that’s throttled to 3 mbps (with other Cricket plans, “high speed” data is 8 mbps). Video is further throttled to “SD quality (about 480p) and data is subject to deprioritization after 22 GB.
Additional lines of Unlimited 2 are available at $ 25 each for lines 2 through 5. That means that two lines of Unlimited 2 are $ 80, which Cricket is advertising as 2 for $ 80/mo Unlimited. Unlimited 2 is not eligible for Cricket’s regular Group Save discounts which are expected to change for the worse on Nov 5. It’s not eligible for the $ 5/mo auto pay credit either. It is eligible for the $ 10 hotspot add-on which provides unlimited hotspot with the first 8 GB at 3 mbps.
Today’s announcement also leaves the future of Cricket’s $ 50/month 8 GB plan very much in doubt. The elimination of that plan was part of the same rumor that correctly predicted the $ 30 and $ 40 plan data increases, the return of Unlimited 2 and the worsening of the Group save discount. There’s no mention of the $ 50 plan in the announcement, but mobile operators usually only announce positive changes in advance.
The $ 50 plan is Cricket’s least expensive plan that includes unlimited Canadian and Mexican calling, texting and roaming and also the least expensive plan that’s eligible for the $ 10/month hotspot add-on. I suspect that it’s Cricket’s most popular plan. Eliminating it would force new customers who want Canada, Mexico calling or roaming or hotspot to choose the $ 55 plan, or even the $ 60 plan if they also want 8 mbps data. If the $ 50 plan is eliminated, current customers on that plan will likely be grandfathered and be able to keep the plan.
Source: Cricket, Image: Facebook