AT&T tries to stave off T-Mobile, offers new no-contract service plans

AT&T's new Mobile Share Value plan offers unlimited text and talk and allows customers to sign-up for the plan without an annual service contract. Sound familiar?

The plan will be available to smartphone customers for $45 per month and will offer unlimited talk and text plus 300 MB of data (additional data plans are available that will run customers $70 per month for 1GB of data or $80 for 2GB, with additional tiers above). Customers can add additional smartphones to the plan for an extra $25 per month or $10 per tablet.

Users with basic phones can get on the same plan for only $40 per month plus $20 for each additional phone.

The new Mobile Share Value plan directly competes with T-Mobile's $50 per month individual Simple Choice Plan which offers unlimited talk and text along with 500 MB of data. Simple Choice users can add another line to the plan for $30 per month and $10 per line for each additional line after that. T-Mobile's plan also comes attached to their much-ballyhooed free international roaming.

Oddly enough, AT&T's Mobile Share Value plan also appears to directly compete with the company's own low-cost Aio Wireless service, which offers no-contract smartphone plans beginning at $55 per month, but come with 2GB of high-speed access.

Aio, you may remember, was set up directly to compete with T-Mobile and even led to a twitter fight and lawsuit over the brand's use of magenta.

Soon, AT&T will have to start cursing more.

The new Mobile Share Value plan will be available as of December 8 and will be open to any customers who receive a new phone through AT&T's phone upgrade program, AT&T Next (which also seems somewhat familiar); bring their own smartphone; purchase a smartphone at retail price; or switch over when their current phone is no longer under contract.

It's strange to think how it wasn't that long ago that AT&T was attempting to purchase the then-floundering T-Mobile network from its German parent company. Over the past year, T-Mobile's occasionally profanity-prone CEO has indeed shaken up the carrier business and made more than a dent in the market.

My, how things have changed.

Update: The story has been updated at 2:06 PM EST to include prices and a link for Mobile Share Value plans with higher data caps.

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