Verizon and AT&T were both going to be charging a “5G fee” to its customers when it rolled out its 5G network, but it decided not to do so.
Instead, you’ll have to pay for one of its pricier plans to get 5G included. And where the 5G fee was going to be $10 per month, you’re basically still paying that fee. You just technically aren’t being charged for it.
Leave it to two of America’s biggest companies to be sneaky about charging you more money.
Which plans have 5G included?
For AT&T, all of their unlimited plans do, which start at $65 per month. Keep in mind that AT&T is also still selling plans with data caps, which are pretty attractive, especially now that we are all stuck at home.
These plans include 5G access, as well as unlimited in Mexico and Canada. The AT&T Unlimited Elite plan also comes with HBO MAX included, which is a really nice add-on to have.
Now as for Verizon, their plans are quite a bit more expensive than AT&T, actually. With their unlimited plans that include 5G, starting at $80 per month for a single line.
As you’ll notice in the screenshot above, the Start Unlimited plan only includes 4G LTE. You can still get 5G, but you’ll have to pay an extra $10 per month. And at that rate, it’s better to just upgrade to the Play More or Do More unlimited plans. As they are also $10 more, and offer a lot more.
For example, the Play More Unlimited plan includes Hulu, Disney+ and ESPN+ for free.
Verizon had always planned to charge extra for 5G, but the competition is not
Verizon had planned to charge extra for 5G access. We saw similar charges for 4G when it first started coming out around 2010. Sprint was notorious for charging you an extra $10/month for its WiMax network, even if you didn’t have access in your area.
What’s holding Verizon back here, is the fact that the competition is not charging for 5G connectivity. We’re mostly talking about T-Mobile here. Who has included 5G connectivity in all of its unlimited plans, at no extra cost.
If T-Mobile were charging extra for it, then you can bet that Verizon would be too.
This might all change when Verizon launches its nationwide 5G network later this year. Currently, Verizon’s 5G network is pretty scarce, and if the wind is blowing, you may get knocked off of it. Needless to say, if people had to pay extra for that 5G network right now, there’d be a lot more pissed off Verizon customers.