AT&T Hits Unlimited Data Plans with $5 Increase

Those unlimited data plans AT&T gave original iPhone owners are about to get more expensive. The carrier plans to raise the price for those plans US$5 a month starting in February 2016, bringing the price customers pay up to $35.

AT&T bumping up unlimited data plan fees by $5 a monthAT&T bumping up unlimited data plan fees by $5 a month

9to5 Mac first reported on AT&T's price increase plan, and The Verge backed them up with their own sources.

The unlimited data plan was part of the deal subscriber got when they bought the original iPhone seven years ago. AT&T dropped the plan in 2010 and started pushing subscribers into capped data plans.

AT&T couldn't kill the unlimited data offering because of contractual obligations with customers so instead it began offering incentives to move to capped plans. Adding tethering support, for example, is considered a new data contract and ends unlimited plans.

The company also throttled bandwidth for unlimited subscribers when they downloaded more data than capped subscribers. The threshold for throttling sits at 22GB in a month, but previously was much lower.

Considering iPhone owners who still have their unlimited data plan haven't seen a price increase in seven years, getting a $5 a month bump could be seen as a necessary move to deal with increased service expenses. Still, it feels a lot like AT&T looking for another way to push people into its capped data plans.