The nation’s largest wireless carriers have reason to be nervous. As the costs for their data plans have escalated in recent years, taking up more and more of limited household budgets (and as unlimited data plans have gone by the wayside), Americans have begun searching for alternatives. New companies are popping up that hope to fill these needs for alternatives.
One new company, FreedomPop, is positioned to be the next phase of low-cost wireless pricing to help consumers keep their data expenditures down. The company, which was initially funded by Skype (News - Alert) co-founder Niklas Zennstrom and launched today , thinks it has found an ideal entrance into the U.S. wireless market at a time when the big-four national wireless providers are hoping to push up subscribers’ bills by tempting them with faster Web-browsing speeds. Monthly fees for one smartphone already top $100.
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The interesting part about FreedomPop is that users don’t need to ditch their existing carriers to take advantage of the cost savings. FreedomPop’s CEO, Stephen Stokols, told the WSJ that he has been using the service to supplement his AT&T (News - Alert) smartphone data plan. He has reduced the data component to the lowest available option of $20 a month for 300 megabytes. (FreedomPop offers data only, not voice.)
"We see a disruptive curve to this," said Stokols. "We aren't out of the gate saying, 'Cut your carrier.'”
FreedomPop and other companies like it aren’t going to be the only ones to see a disruptive curve. The nation’s largest wireless carriers are also likely to see some disruption.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman