T-Mobile “Data Stash” Will Let Some Customers Roll Over Unused 4G LTE Data

This guy is maybe a little too excited about Data Stash.

This guy is maybe a little too excited about Data Stash.

Here’s the latest piece of evidence showing that data is dirt cheap and we’re paying too much for it. T-Mobile announced today that it will start letting subscribers with plans of at least 3GB/month (1GB/month for tablet plans) begin rolling over any of their unused 4G LTE allotments into what it’s dubbed the “Data Stash.”

From everything we can tell, it’s effectively no different from rollover minutes that wireless companies used to advertise before everyone stopped talking on the phone.

Beginning in January, subscribers in Simple Choice plans starting with 4G LTE allotments of at least 3GB/month will start seeing any unused high-speed data added to their next month’s allowance, where it will remain until you use it up or until a year passes.

The 3GB/month minimum for smartphones not only eliminates the rollover option for 1GB/month customers, it also means that anyone who signed up for the pretty decent 4-for-$100 plan (4 lines at 2.5GB each) are not eligible for the Stash.

For those with tablet data plans from T-Mobile, the minimum plan for inclusion in Data Stash is 1GB/month.

While we applaud the fact that T-Mobile isn’t throwing customers’ data away and taking their money, we wonder if it will ultimately have any effect on how T-Mo subscribers use their data.

Assume that your average 3GB/month subscriber is only using 2GB each month. If that doesn’t change after the implementation of Data Stash, that user will have more access to more than a dozen gigabytes of LTE service come next holiday season. The user would presumably continue to maintain at that same level of unused data so long as Data Stash exists.

For some people whose data use can occasionally get near their monthly limit, there may be real value in a rollover plan like this, but for users who aren’t streaming video over LTE to their devices, it may be no different that AT&T and Sprint dangling the data carrot that will never be eaten.

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