In a post on Engadget today, there is a screenshot of a family (“consumer”) shared data plan offering in some Verizon internal training materials. Verizon has indicated publicly that this is something they were planning on rolling out in 2012, and it looks like they may still be on track to offer it.
Here’s a link to the article: http://engt.co/yESDOa
The question is…will AT&T follow suit? And will either carrier (or any carrier) work towards eventually offering this sort of plan on corporate accounts, as a “data pooling” plan? Would this make it easier for organizations to pay for employee data usage, without fear of large usage overages (not counting international data)?
As more companies roll out BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) programs, how do they ensure that expensed data usage is at the best pricing levels? Today, some carriers offer split billing, which allows for voice charges to remain on the employee device, while sending data charges to a corporate account. The problem is that even with a good wireless TEM program in place or even an advanced MDM (Mobile Device Management) program in place, there will still be spikes in data usage and cost that companies will need to take into account from a budgeting perspective.
Could shared data plans at the corporate account level help minimize those risks? Perhaps we’ll find out in the latter part of 2012!