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Verizon Wireless joins other major carriers in revamping mobile service plans

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Verizon Wireless introduced today its MORE Everything plans, which will automatically replace existing Share Everything plans for current customers and is immediately available to new customers.

For the same monthly price, customers with 500 MB of monthly data switch to 1 GB, 1 GB doubles to 2 GB and 2 GB becomes 3 GB.

Customers also receive a complimentary 25 GB of VZ Cloud for backing up contacts, photos, videos and files, and three free months of Family Base, which lets parents monitor app usage and contact lists for kids and teens, set boundaries on content and limit device usage.

MORE Everything subscribers retain their unlimited voice minutes and text messaging and can still share buckets of data among up to 10 devices such as smart phones, tablets, jetpacks and laptops.

“Verizon was the first wireless carrier to let its customers share data among devices, and our customers have told us they love it,” said Jerry Fountain, president for Verizon Wireless in the Carolinas and Tennessee. “Our MORE Everything plans are designed to give customers even more value with the reliable wireless network they trust.”

The new plans offer discounts of $10 or $20 per month to customers who skip the two-year contract in favor of Verizon Edge, which lets people spread out the full cost of a new device over two years, with an option to upgrade after paying 50 percent of the retail cost.

Verizon Edge, introduced in July 2013, is among the ways mobile carriers have been weaning customers from heavily subsidized phones, which mobile carriers sell for well below their cost in exchange for a two-year contract. This strategy has become less profitable for mobile companies and less desirable to consumers, who've fled to no-contract phones in large numbers.

No-contract or "prepaid" carriers charge full freight for their wide variety of smart phones but charge less per month and require no commitment or credit check. Without a contract, smart phone users can upgrade to the latest phone more often or more easily replace a malfunctioning phone. With the major mobile carriers' new installment plans, customers may not technically tie themselves to a contract, but they're on the hook for the full cost of any devices still under payment plans.

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