Verizon to Offer $50 Data-Only Plan for LTE Phones Bought Off Contract


If you were planning on buying the HTC Thunderbolt off contract, you may want to take a look at a new plan option that Android Central has uncovered. Should you buy an LTE smartphone without a two-year contract and don’t want to use the phone part of the phone, you can get a data-only plan for $50 per month.

That money will net you 5GB of data, with each gigabyte after that costing $10 until the end of the month. The catch is that you’ll have to get a voice and data plan first, but a quick call to Verizon should get you on your way.

The plan is great for folks who would rather use VoIP clients to make their phone calls or for deaf people where voice plans are useless. We’re not sure how many people will actually spring for this, but it’s nice to know you have options. Are any of you thinking of going this route?

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Google Voice over IP, ftw!

  2. Google Voice is the suck. Tried it, but half the numbers around me can’t call it.

  3. @Topher

    Android still has no way of utilizing Google Voice/Gmail VoIP. Ironically, iPhone/iPod/iPad does, through Talkatone. I’d love to switch to data only; I already use Google Voice for all texting and call through Gmail as much as possible, but it’s still not yet an option for us Android users:(

  4. @Topher:

    How is it not an option? I use google voice every day to dial the UK from the US without any issues whatsoever. Right from my DroidX.

    I wonder if this is going to be the plan for the Xoom too.

  5. I remeber all the people who wanted (and those who still want) IP phone as their only phone.. not me brother.. I can’t stand to talk to people with voip phones.

  6. @Mike why not just use any other SIP client? Lots of them available on the market.

  7. 50 is tooooo high for data only especially since its capped. love the idea of data only however.

  8. @Tad

    I’m assuming you were responding to me…if so, when you dial out with a GV number, all that means is Google is connecting your call to your carrier’s network. All minutes used are still through traditional voice networks, not VoIP. Android, as far as I know, still lacks Gmail VoIP integration.

  9. Why would anyone buy a phone not to use the phone lol
    If they want to sell a data device then they should make one for that use only.. The phone companies have real idiots working for them now, and it gets worst everyday.

  10. @Jacknyd

    NO! its not dumb to use a phone for only data, the more options the better if u liked reading would still get a kindle over an ipad or tablet prob not, and WTF $50 for 5GB of data, might as well get mifi and use wifi on ur phone which would make the connection alot faster

  11. Excellent idea. Tmo has this for blackberries only. I would love to have a data only plan. GV does need a voip solution though…

  12. Somebody on a family plan would not benefit from this.

  13. Doesn’t T-Mobile offer a data only plan as well for phones? Might be the same price or cheaper. Regardless, I’ll stick with the cheapest voice plan + a good data plan. If you drive anywhere or travel to the boonies or go to areas with TONS (e.g. populated stadiums or conventions with tens of thousands of people), do NOT count on your data working reliably or at all, doesn’t matter who the provider is.

  14. Not a move I expected from Verizon…Surprisingly they are recognizing the shift in how users will use their phones and appear to be somewhat embracing it, rather then fighting it to the bitter end…I am impressed!

    But for now, sticking with T-Mobile

  15. not interested, not even dual-core.

  16. I don’t see anyone going over 5GB of data a month on a phone…I mean I’m sure people come close but still. That being said, 50 bucks for capped data? I’ll stick with my 30 buck unlimited 3G service, thank you.

  17. I go over 5GB almost every month .. my phone is my only internet connection.

  18. Wow, I want this option. I use 25 minutes per month on my pone.

  19. I’m paying $20 per month with T-Mobile, and taking advantage of the HSPA+ speeds. $50 is a lot!

  20. I like this a lot. Got to look into those voip options though. Is there a free/cheap one with decent quality?

  21. All this really is, is taking out the sim card in the 4g usb device and putting it into a 4g phone. You keep the 5g data service without voice. If you get a 4g phone, then move plan to usb plan of 5g without data. Its just a result in being able to move the sim card to different 4g devices. Since the plan the device is on is saved on the sim card, it can be moved around to different devices as well.

  22. $50 for capped data and you have to pay the full retail price for the handset???? No way!!!! Tmobile offers its deaf customers an unlimited data only plan at around $35 and you can get the phone at the 2 year contract price. If Verizon wants this plan to be popular they need to lower the price and offer the phones at a discounted price like they do with their other plans.

  23. Wow, I want this option. I use 25 minutes per month on my phone. I’m sure VOIP would suffice.

  24. What about a 1 year contract. Can you still get the $30 4g plan if you get a 1 year contract.

  25. If Google Voice adds native VoIP support, I would port my number over and jump on that sh!t in a second. I know there are ways to do it now, but you need to string like 3 apps together.

  26. Yeah, I second that motion to porting my cell to google voice. I just read that google now has a sip server address for making calls – most likely the reason why they shut down Gizmo5, to launch their own service in the near future. But how near google? You know we want our VoIP calling over 4g! Now that 4g networks with low latency are in order (at least getting there) now is the time to do VoIP over 4g carrier networks. It’s time to change the game in the wireless industry, no more high prices for a little number of minutes. Verizon knows this is eventually going to happen, which is why they are moving to VoLTE, to compete with VoIP. Also, it seems as though Verizon is pulling a Tmobile and allowing for a 4g data only plan ($50 for 5GB) if one purchases the LTE handset at full price. These are all the happenings I have been waiting for!!!

  27. Verizon also has a data+text only plan for 3G at $55 a month (and you can get your phone with a contract price). Minutes were discounted at $0.25 each. They have since changed the plan to require proof that you’re hearing-impaired, but it wasn’t a requirement when they first offered that plan (or at least it wasn’t enforced).
    I was on that plan for 1.5 years. Probably used 100 – 200 cell minutes during that time. I bought ~2400 minutes from for $25. Worked ok over 3G, but much better over wifi.

  28. At a 5GB cap and using VOIP exclusively I KNOW I would go over every month. Still, I can see this being useful for some, but I still find the price a bit steep considering you aren’t even having VZW subsidize the cost of your phone.

  29. Line2 application is an excellent option for mobile voip. quality is good. it is currently offered free for a month to try out. thereafter $10 per month unlimited US & canada calling with unlimited SMS. 2 lines for $15.
    Try out ….
    I think this is good option for everyone. One can use it to replace home internet too. 5GB is a lot!

  30. @Paul

    You obviously have never worked shift work for a government contractor out in the middle of nowhere. I have used 5GB in a week. I have never had a month below 5GB; so far they haven’t revoked my unlimited plan.

  31. only 5GB’s for $50 a month?!?!?!? i want unlimited data for $49.99 and ill buy today… no minutes, no texts, just give me non-wifi internet access wherever i go :) i use skype on my droid and tablets and would love to port my cell to google voice-drop my sprint acct – and just use my skype number for all my calls (google voice will transfer calls to skype number free) :)

    the new measures by at&t are further proof that cellphone manufacturers are giving them devices that have certain functionality, and then the cellular providers disable the features and want to charge you more to re-enable them.

    this needs to stop!!! much like the phony ‘unlimited’ plans that actually have hidden limitation in their contract, cell providers blocking internet functions and limiting it to the device needs to be against the law – they are in essence removing features you paid for since the phone came with the function… if you bought a car and the salesman took off the tires afterwards and said “its safer for you this way, but if you want it back its another $50 a month” would you sit idely by and just pay the extra fee? i think not!!!
    i submitted my complaint to the FTC and BBB regarding these issues, and i suggest everyone else who want the freedom to do with their ‘data; whatever they choose to do the same

  32. I like this plan, would have been better if you didn’t have to pay full price for the phone.

  33. Actually, I walked into a VZW store today and spoke to a rep about the 5GB data-only plan. I asked her if you had to purchase the phone outright and she explained that you don’t have to, you can get on contract with a data plan while getting the phone at the subsidized price. I was quite surprised to hear this, as it seems that verizon is really changing it up in the wireless market.

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