Reporting Kurtis Ming
A major change for Verizon customers takes place on Thursday. Customers who upgrade their phones may not get to keep their unlimited data plans.
Sally Medina, a Sacramento mom, says when her daughter got a new phone, Verizon switched her data plan from unlimited to 2 gigabytes per month. It sounded like the change that’s slated to happen Thursday, but Verizon says the two situations have nothing to do with each other.
“This was the agreement. We did our part. I think they should follow through on theirs,” said Medina.
She said Verizon switched her daughter Leticia’s data plan from unlimited to one that only allows 2 gigabytes a month when Leticia got a new phone in January. Leticia is on her mother’s family plan.
“They told her it was going to be unlimited so she didn’t question it,” said Medina.
But Leticia did question it a few months later, when she got a text telling her she used up half the data allowed for the month.
“I don’t know what the expense would be if she goes over, which of course I don’t want to absorb,” said Medina.
Medina says Verizon refused to restore Leticia to unlimited data.
“Selling data consumption is incredibly lucrative, especially since data consumption is expected to rise. People are getting more hungry for it. And also people will start using more data as the network speeds improve,” said CNET senior editor Jessica Dolcourt.
Dolcourt says more carriers are trying to get customers switched from unlimited to tiered data plans. Verizon is taking a big step on Thursday by phasing out unlimited data. Customers who are grandfathered into the plan will have to give it up when they upgrade to a new phone and pay the discounted price.
“There are only a few more days left to be able to go ahead and upgrade your phone without moving over to the new plan,” said Dolcourt.
Verizon says you can keep your unlimited data plan when you upgrade, but only if you pay the full retail price of the phone.
The carrier tells us Medina’s situation was not related to the policy change but couldn’t tell us why it changed her daughter’s data plan. But after we got involved, the company switched her back to unlimited.
“That’s the resolution I’m looking for, yes,” said Medina.
Medina tells CBS13 Verizon apologized and said her daughter should have been kept on the unlimited plan. She understands her daughter will have to give up her unlimited data plan the next time she upgrades her phone and gets the discounted price.