Walmart’s “unlimited” Straight Talk iPhone 5 plans have a 2GB cap? Ouch!

Earlier this month we read of Walmart’s promotional iPhone 5 offers in store. The huge supermarket chain is offering the iPhone on an unlimited Straight Talk plan, supposedly offering unlimited everything for only $49 per month. Sure, customers have to pay full price for the iPhone, but it appeared a tempting proposition nonetheless. Unlimited data on any iPhone 5 deal is hard to find these days, and sadly, this offer is actually too good to be true.

Despite advertising the plan as having unlimited data, it has now been confirmed that the Straight Talk plan in fact caps users to only 2GB of use. Since you don’t get charged extra for going over that 2GB, Walmart decided that the “unlimited” advertising was perfectly okay. Instead, the carrier will choke your internet speeds once you hit the limit. Call it a “fair usage policy” if you will, but if it’s being branded as unlimited you’d certainly expect the ceiling to be much higher than just a measly 2GB.

Having worked in mobile retail in the UK, I’ve certainly seen worse. Some carriers calling 2,000 texts unlimited, or even 750MB of data. But as the world becomes more dependent on cellular connectivity, 2GB seems like a stretch.

What do you think? Is Walmart justified in advertising it as unlimited? Or should it just be promoted as “2GB limit with no overage charges”?

Via: SlashGear
Source: ArsTechnica

Tags: , , , , ,

  • DarrenButz

    Virgin Mobile is unlimited but throttles speed at 2.5 GB. I’ve never even hit 1 GB so I think for the average user, 2 GB is plenty anyways.

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    If there is a limit, it isn’t unlimited – but in Straight Talk’s defense you’re bashing them a little hard with this story – they don’t cap you at 2GB, they THROTTLE you at 2GB. There is a difference, and it matters.

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    @DarrenButz Keep in mind the question here isn’t whether or not 2GB is enough or not – that’s not important – it’s whether or not calling this plan “unlimited” is fair play.

  • BrandonCollins1

    After spending years working in a FOS Wal-Mart wireless I don’t believe saying 2gb with no overage charges would go over well with the customers. You have to remember the average Joe isn’t able to understand common sense. It would just cause problems for the sales reps.

  • brendiemorris

    Straight Talk is the best.  I love a reasonable bill and no extra junk.  My cell phone runs on Straight Talk through Verizon and I just bought Straight Talk Home Phone which also works on Verizon.  Very pleased.  So much so, I bought stock in America Movil (parent company).  There is simply no reason to get sucked into contracts any longer.

  • Bento

    It is unlimited data – there is no cap. What is the confusion? Speeds slow down but you are not cut off. I guess basic English comprehension is lost on y’all!

  • raydiablo

    Well I’m an original AT&T data planner owner so I still have the grandfather unlimited data. And after a few gigs they cap you off too…which isn’t fair because when I first signed up for it it was truly unlimited

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    @raydiablo No, they don’t cap you off. They THROTTLE you. You signed up for unlimited consumption of data – they’re serving you all the data that you ask for. All they do is slow it down, you didn’t agree to anything about speed.

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    @BrandonCollins1 I can understand where you are coming from. Working in IT support, I really can, but the problem is it’s lazy. Calling it unlimited in order to get around a consumers ignorance is just making the problem worse. Educate people, help them understand.

  • Scotty

    We switched over to StraightTalk about 9 months ago, and I have used close to my 2Gb of data a couple of times and one time I went up to 4Gb of data (travelling that month to AZ), and NOT ONCE did Straightalk ever throttle me or cancel my account.  Unless you are doing heavy video watching or anything that requires massive amounts of bandwidth, a 2Gb “cap” is reasonable.    I have been saving a ton of money by using StraightTalk…will never go back to contracts again…

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    Not once as far as you know. What were you doing when you exceeded the cap? This isn’t a policy, it’s simply them reserving the ability to throttle heavy users. For some reason people are getting all up in arms about this, it’s really a non-issue.
     
    As far as you saying a 2GB cap is reasonable, that is true…but it’s not the point. If I advertised to you that a car could go 200mph, and then after you bought it you discovered I capped the speed at 90mph would me simply telling you “90mph is reasonable” be enough for you?

  • MichaelLe1

    @CallChrisNow Well wouldn’t it be a valid claim if you car hits 200mph but only for 5 mins at a time?

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    @MichaelLe1 I’m hoping that’s a rhetorical question, it’s a pretty obvious answer.

  • DarrenButz

    @CallChrisNow That’s true. But I don’t understand why Straight Talk is the only ones “at fault.” VM calls it unlimited too and I’ve never read an article about it like this one.

  • http://chriscall.me/ CallChrisNow

    @DarrenButz   Straight Talk isn’t the only one at fault – people have been calling carriers out over this for years. You’re only hearing about it now because this blog only covers iPhone news.

  • DarrenButz

    @CallChrisNow True. But VM has the iPhone too. They’re making it like this is the first iPhone carrier to throttle speeds.
    I’m still laughing at the title though. It’s not capped, it’s throttled. And having “Ouch!” in the title makes the blog look immature (so to speak) in my opinion.

  • http://www.dinogy.com/ dinogy

    Unlimited data on any iPhone 5 deal is hard to find these days, and sadly, this offer is actually too good to be true.

  • MarcNJ

    I used an unlocked Iphone on Straight Talk for a year that was operating on AT&T and now bought Iphone 5 from Straight Talk that is running on Verizon. I have never had a problem with service and have also went over 2gb almost 3.  I also do not abuse the plan. For $45 a month what a great deal. If you want to pay all the taxes and fess go to the other carriers. I love my phone and plan w/ Straight Talk.

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