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Verizon’s Share Everything plans: Will a new plan cost you more?

Would one of Verizon's new Share Everything plans cost you more or less than your current plan? Read on to find out. 

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Tethering Now Free, But It Always Was

One of the benefits of Share Everything is that it drops the $20 a month tethering fee Verizon has been charging smart phone owners who want to use their devices as mobile hot spots. While that fee was always a hassle, there were and still are ways around it.

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The Google Play market has a number of apps that allow you to tether without paying the carrier any additional monthly charges. PdaNet allows you to connect your phone to a PC or Mac via USB while FoxFi allows you to connect via Wi-Fi. 

Whether you opt for the current rate plan or Share Everything, you can save a lot of money on 3G or 4G tablets by purchasing their Wi-Fi-only equivalents and using your phone’s hot spot feature to get them online. 

Grandfathered Plans: Don’t Leave

If you’ve been with Verizon a while you may be grandfathered into one of two possible plans. First, if you signed up for a smart phone prior to last summer, you may have an unlimited data plan. If you want to upgrade to a new phone after June 27, you’ll need to either pay the full, unsubsidized price (usually over $500) or switch to either Share Everything or an older limited data plan. Clearly, if you can stick with your current phone or upgrade before the cutoff date, you’ll want to hang on to  your unlimited plan over Share Everything. There’s no unlimited data option under Share Everything.

You may also have signed up for data at the promotional rate of 4GB for $30 when Verizon was offering a special deal during the holiday season. If that’s the case, you’re also in a better situation than you would be under Share Everything. The minimum cost for a smart phone with 4GB of data is $110 a month under Share Everything, but if you have the promotional rate, your minimum is just $69.99. 

Bottom Line

When you do the math, you see that the Share Everything plan really saves you money if you plan to use more than the minimum amount of voice minutes and texts. It can also save your sanity by providing you with a single pool of data, rather than separate allotments for each device you own.

However, if you don’t plan to make a lot of traditional voice calls or send a lot of SMS text messages,  you may save money by sticking with the old-fashioned rate plans that are still available through June 27. You can also save on device fees, by purchasing a plan only for your smart phones and then using them as hot spots to get your tablets and notebooks online.

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