Despite concerns over the major carriers switching to limited data plans, most smartphone users don't consume nearly as much data as expected, according to a Consumer Reports story yesterday.
Analyzing information obtained from 23,000 consumer cell phone bills, Consumer Reports found that the average bill from February 2010 to February 2011 did show a fair amount of data consumed per month--274 megabytes for T-Mobile subscribers, 360MB for AT&T users, and 449MB for those on Verizon.
But that average was pulled higher by a small percentage of heavy data users and so doesn't give a truly accurate picture, according to the story. Looking instead at the median smartphone user (midpoint on the scale), the magazine found considerably less data use--48MB per month for T-Mobile users, 120MB for those on AT&T, and 158MB for Verizon subscribers.
The results indicate to Consumer Reports that most existing Verizon subscribers who stick with the company's all-you-can-eat plan for $30 a month and most new customers who choose the 2GB plan for $30 will end up in the same boat because neither group will get close to that 2GB threshold.
The move by T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon to tiered pricing leaves Sprint as the only major U.S. carrier to still offer unlimited data plans--at least for now.