AT&T tweaks unlimited data plan after realizing it's the worst

The unlimited data war rages on, and today we're seeing AT&T tweak its unlimited data offerings to better compete with Verizon and T-Mobile. Like the rest of the big four, AT&T was quick to roll out a new unlimited data plan after Verizon announced one of its own. The only problem was that AT&T's plan was clearly the worst, asking for more money than Verizon and T-Mobile while leaving out important features like tethering and mobile hotspot.

AT&T's renewed approach to unlimited data actually includes two plans: AT&T Unlimited Plus and AT&T Unlimited Choice. Unlimited Plus is the more "premium" of the two, coming in at $90 per month for a single line and $145 per month for two lines. What does that monthly fee get you?

AT&T Unlimited Plus

For starters, you (obviously) get unlimited 4G LTE data on those lines, but like the plans from other carriers, it isn't truly unlimited as AT&T reserves the right to slow you down once you hit 22GB of usage. You also have the ability to stream HD video on Unlimited Plus, though you'll have to turn off Stream Saver, which limits your video streams to 480p and is automatically activated on all unlimited data lines.

With AT&T's original unlimited data plan, it decided not to include mobile hotspot, which was a strange decision considering Verizon and T-Mobile offered it. It seems that AT&T has seen the light, as Unlimited Plus also includes 10GB of mobile hotspot data. After you hit that 10GB limit, your hotspot speeds will be limited to 128Kbps; Verizon and T-Mobile, on the other hand, throttle your hotspot speeds to 3G.

Finally, signing up for an Unlimited Plus plan will give you a $25 monthly discount on DIRECTV or DIRECTV Now subscriptions. If you're a DIRECTV subscriber or thinking about switching TV providers, this might make AT&T's Unlimited Plus plan more valuable, despite the fact that it's still slightly more expensive than Verizon's own plan.

It's worth noting that these single and double line prices assume discounts for signing up for AutoPay and paperless billing. Just as well, you can add up to 8 additional lines for $20 each, which means that four lines on AT&T's Unlimited Plus come in at $185. By comparison, those four lines will cost you $180 on Verizon and $160 on T-Mobile, so while this new plan is definitely more competitive than AT&T's first attempt, it's still the most expensive.

AT&T Unlimited Choice

If you'd like to save some cash while still getting unlimited data, you may want to look at AT&T's Unlimited Choice plan. A single line on Unlimited Choice costs $60 after AutoPay and paperless billing discounts, while two cost $115 per month. Like Unlimited Plus, extra lines are $20 each, meaning four lines on Unlimited Choice will set you back $155 per month.

That isn't a bad deal, but there are of course some caveats. With Unlimited Choice, your speeds will be capped at 3Mbps from the start, and AT&T still says it could slow you down after you hit 22GB of usage. It gets even worse when we look at the restrictions for video streaming, where your download speeds will be limited to just 1.5Mbps. That means HD streaming is pretty much out of the question on the Unlimited Choice plan.

So, while AT&T's unlimited data plans are getting better, Verizon and T-Mobile will probably still be the winners for many people who don't want to take advantage of those DIRECTV discounts. For now, AT&T simply says these plans are "coming soon," but they should be launching sometime in the next few days. In the meantime, you can check out the source link below if you'd like more information.