Spaceballs jokes aside, the data plans with both Verizon's and AT&T's LTE networks are a joke. iPad broadband plans start at $14.99 for 250 MB on AT&T, and $20 for 1GB on Verizon. On the lower end plans, users are blowing through their data caps in hours. If you watch video, you're screwed.
I'll be fair when I say that this is the case for most data plans for products other than the iPad 3. But it's sad that $20 of a data plan isn't even worth your time. One user watched two hours of March Madness games and it burnt through his entire monthly allotment. Over Verizon's 4G network, that user would have to pay an extra $10 for every GB over his $30 subscription. What's even the point of the data plans?!
At this point, either users have to boycott these date plans' prices, or we just have to accept this as the norm. Verizon has been on record saying that "customers can pick higher-use plans or they can go easier on their data allotments by shifting to Wi-Fi networks when they are available."
Users are coming to the conclusion that the addvantages of the new iPad are neutralized by the restrictions of a 2GB data limit. A new, pretty screen has users wanting to use their device when ouside of the home, and preferably not on unreliable local wi-fi. The Wall Street Journal said:
What many consumers may not realize is the new iPad's faster LTE connection means they will use more data even if they don't change their 3G surfing habits. Take regular video: Verizon estimates that streaming it over an LTE connection runs through 650 megabytes an hour. That's double the amount of data used streaming the same video over a 3G link, because the fatter pipe lets more data through.
So if you are using 4G LTE, go easy on video when you're not at home or in Wi-fi areas. Otherwise, you might find yourself with your monthly allotment of data gone in a matter of hours.
[source: The Wall Street Journal]