So have you seen all the press reports about The New iPad? In the beginning it was about features etc…now the chorus of boos is about the LTE data plans from VZW and ATT. People are looking at the size of files that can be displayed on the tablet’s high resolution ‘retina’ display (2048×1536 pixels) and then looking at all of the application download sizes and coming to the conclusion that $5/10GB is a little high. I agree. It’s skyway robbery.
On the other hand, remember this chart?
Anyway the operators are banking on improving margins with you/we early adopters so this should not be shocking. They essentially need us to pay for the service but not really use it. Unfortunately this is not going to be the case with high speed mobile wireless.
Unfortunately the wireless operator networks are organized for voice and sort of inefficiently designed for data, thus the costs for the operators will always be high and they will always be hesitant to give us a reasonable deal.
There is a way around this problem though. Operators could encourage the deployment of small cells (you are penalized now by having to buy one or complain to get one) and offer us free usage on small cells like femto cells. Traffic from a small cell is much less costly for them than over the macro network and while you are in coverage of a small cell you are going to be getting a very good signal, so high throughput is likely, thus this becomes a win-win solution.
So a lot of things on the operator’s side have to change to make this happen, but they are no different than the level of commitment it takes to launch LTE in the first place. It’s time for small cells to save the day. Let’s go get this done.