When you’re looking to buy your next phone, the price of the device is probably one of the biggest parts of the total purchase. After all, how much you’re going to drop in that moment may make or break the purchase entirely. Thankfully, though, the prices of our next smartphone can usually be guessed even before the device lands on store shelves. But when it comes to tablets, there’s still some margin for guesswork as to the overall price of the device (or what the carriers will charge for the signing of a new contract). Unfortunately, the current data price plan offerings for the tablets available now may not be the best bet for customers looking to buy a slate, and it looks like Sprint is looking to change things up. But, if these new prices are the real deal, is Sprint heading in the right direction?

While the price of the device may be one of the most important aspects of a purchase, if not the most important, the price plan it’s tied to is also very important. Especially for someone who is signing a new yearly contract. How much they’re going to be spending every month to get the features they want is something a future subscriber (or current one) has to weigh carefully. It seems that for tablets the plan is even more important, and the carriers are paying more attention to this. In fact, if Sprint’s change-up in price plan is any indicator, then perhaps tablet sales aren’t as stellar as some may believe.

But if tablet sales can be altered for the better, will it really come down to how much people are paying per month versus the out-right cost of the device? Apparently Sprint thinks it will indeed come down to the latter, as the company is looking to change up their tablet pricing. However, these new prices reflect 4G-enabled tablets, and don’t seem to touch on the already available tablets. And while nothing has been confirmed quite yet, it looks like the new plans will launch alongside the HTC EVO View 4G.

It breaks down like this: for $20 per month you get access to 1GB of 3G data per month, but you don’t get any 4G-connectivity at all. From there, it takes a pretty big leap to $45 per month for 3GB of 3G data and unlimited 4G data. And then we’ve got $60 for 5GB of 3G data; and finally $90 per month for 10GB of 3G data. The latter two plans include unlimited 4G data connectivity, and all of the plans are measured at $.05 per MB for any overages. There’s no denying that the plans are expensive, but the tantalizing addition of unlimited 4G might make potential customers take a second look.

But with these high-cost monthly plans, will Sprint reduce the cost of the tablets they are tied to? Or will the pricing for these slates remain the same? Or, perhaps more importantly, will it matter if the pricing for the tablets themselves decreases (or increases) with monthly plan prices like this? Truth be told, I think if these plans launch as they are, then there’s a real chance that people start picking up more tablets. But, that’s dependent on whether or not these customers are in a 4G-enabled location. After all, that unlimited data aspect is almost too good to pass up, especially with the fall-back of 3G available. If the unlimited 4G data wasn’t provided in the majority of the plans, I don’t think these would fly at all.

Of course, customers are liable to pay anything as long as they believe they are getting a good deal for the money they are putting down. But, as we look at the plans above, the question still stands: will these prices be what bring more customers to the tablet market? Or will they push people in the other direction? Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Don't forget to VOTE! Each week, PhoneDog Fans vote for their #1 smartphone in the Official Smartphone Rankings. Vote now and contribute to the industry's most relevant weekly ranking charts

Products mentioned in this Article

eBay prices for the HTC EVO View 4G

Related posts

Comments & discussions  

27 Reactions to this post

"Will data pricing affect your tablet purchase?"

Please limit your reaction to 140 characters or use comments for a longer reply :)
Thanks for your participation! :)

Steve Moore Maxi errr iPads are an even bigger waste. Hamstrung by no flash no removable/upgradeable memory/removable battery/disk drive. Maybe you should've never bought a laptop in the first place Zack.
Steve Moore Who cares? Tablets are boooorrrring/waste of time/money.
Christopher Jackson When my laptop craps out I will probably buy an ipad, I hear that AT&T might be coming out with a plan that bundles all devices under one data plan. If they do that them I will definitely buy an ipad. Android sucks because there phones and tablets have crappy battery life and the apps don't work properly half the time. However the ipad's software and hardware are both made by Apple which means a better product overall. Not to mention the apps are way better and the games are way better too!!!
Erick Contreras In my opinion tablets are not yet at the point where they can replace laptops or netbooks, at this point even the iPad doesn't seem to bring anything that truly makes it a laptop replacement... Don't get me wrong they are cool. That is just my opinion.
Byoung G Young wifi only is the way to go and faster
Zach Cline Tablets are not oversized smartphones. First off, They don't make calls. Second- Most of the apps on them are for tablets only. And my ipad has replaced my laptop for the most part. If you think a tablet is useless then you've either never used one or you're clueless.
Luis Arturo Batista Aquino yes it affect´s me...
Darryl Mouzone No because personally I wouldn't buy a tablet.
Ryan DeClue Ummm... You are really asking this question? Of course it will affect everyone's choice, its cold hard freaking cash we're talking about!
Brian Cicalese The carriers need to offer unlimited data for one customer. 40 dollars to use a smartphone and a tablet. It should be a bundled plan. If people want to use more devices on the plan then the carrier could charge. They are trying to maximize revenue.
Patrick Rhodes Wifi only ftw
Scott Ingram I think theyre a pointless tech i mean all they are is an oversized smartphone and some smartphones have better cameras than tablets do
Erick Contreras Nope, i just tether my evo with my transformer(wi-fi) and everything works amazingly
Curt Popejoy we are getting two dell streaks. one 4g when we are traveling and one wifi only more for home.
Jerimiah Reece I got a Xoom WiFi instead of a 3G specifically due to data plans.
Tony Abiama No tablet pricing will effect my tablet purchase
Jaye Barlow No bc of unlimited data provided by Sprint!!
Victor Perez my wifi is faster than 4g lte, so id only buy wifi since i would mostly use it at home
Steve Williams wifi ftw
Jerry Adney I have a smart phone, laptop, and desktop workstation so when I bought my tablet it basically took the place of my notebook for less intensive work and communications. The notebook always did fine on wifi so the tablet has as well. I almost always have wifi and when I do not, I can fire up a hotspot on my Evo and check email, sync calendar, etc. I understand how carriers are using the new tablet market in a way they never really managed to do with netbooks - as a way to sell more data plans. The problem is, I already pay plenty for data and I don't need yet another bill attached to a device so wifi-only tablets for me for the foreseeable future.
Cyndi Rose I just use a Virgin pre-paid unlimited with MiFi. No extra phone line. Motorola Xoom tablet. Works fantastic.
Seenoor Peter Of course
Cody Sulouff No, because I'm never going to buy a tablet. I have an iPhone and a laptop, I don't see the point.
William Burnham I just bought a WiFi only version and I tether my phone whenever I don't have wifi. But 90% of the time I'm in a location with WiFi.

Most popular Videos
Most popular Videos
Most popular Videos

Most popular Reactions
Most popular Reactions
Most popular Reactions

This weeks "People's Choice Rankings" best smartphones
People's Choice Rankings

See all hot devices