ipadOh AT&T Wireless, why must you do this to us? The company just announced that starting Sunday, February 22, they're launching a new data plan that "gives customers more data for more value." Which is corporate speak for "we're raising the prices on you, bwa ha ha ha ha!"

I happen to be an AT&T Wireless customer, so that means I'm going to have to sift through the info and figure out what it all means. What I'd really like is a personalized email from AT&T that goes something like "Dear Adriana, here's exactly how this impacts YOUR plan ..." But short of that, let's see how this new-fangled data plan adds up.

Okay, so this first part is for smartphone users. It looks like whatever data plan you have, it's going up by $5. But you really will get more data. Or -- you could switch to a lower data plan and delude yourself with the notion that you'll "just try and use it less often." Yeah, I've tried that.

  • NEW: 300MB of data per month/$20.  OLD: 200MB of data per month/$15.
  • NEW: 3GB of data per month/$30.  OLD: 2GB of data per month/$25.
  • NEW: 5GB per month/$50.  OLD: 4GB of data per month/$45.

And now, the tablets, AKA iPads and whatnot. AT&T is discontinuing its "250MB pay-as-you-go for $14.99/month" plan. But in its place it has these two plans.

  • 3GB of data/$30 plus $10 per additional GB
  • 5GB of data/$50 plus $10 per additional GB

And that's it in a nutshell. Phew, that wasn't too bad, was it? Apparently, AT&T's rates are still lower than Verizon Wireless, which starts at $30 for 2GB of data. AND -- if you'd been using its unlimited plan since ye olden days, you can stick with it, even though it was discontinued in 2010. Anyway, this is a good time for customers to start paying more attention to your bills so you can make the best choice for you.

Would you rather pay a little more for more data, or would you rather just keep your bill lower?