I Bequeath My Unlimited Data Plan to My Daughter, Really

As Apple prepares to introduce the iPhone 5, I’ve begun reminiscing about a deal I struck with my 13-year-old daughter.

She’s always wanted an iPhone. In fact, she’s wanted one since they came out in 2007 – when she was 8 years old. But my response was always the same: “No, you don’t need one. I know where you are every second of the day. There’s no need for a phone.”

Then came middle school. That old argument didn’t hold up anymore.

As a result, she got her first cell. It wasn’t anything fancy (i.e., it wasn’t an iPhone), just a basic-feature phone that let her make calls and text. “Mom, I’m over at blah, blah’s house. Mom, I’ll be home at blah, blah time. Mom, can I go to the blah, blah movie?”

Life was good. No more whining.

Then came her 13th birthday. The whining returned. She wanted an iPhone 4S. A deal was struck. She would have to pay for her own data plan, which meant she would have to do the above-and-beyond chores around our house like gardening, vacuuming, dusting, etc. You get the picture.

But when we were crafting the deal, I did have a big concern. She’s a real data hog and could easily blow way a 2GB limit with all the YouTube videos she and her friends watch. Sure, she has a one hour limit of tube time (Computer, TV, Video Games) during the weekdays, but Saturdays are limitless as long as no homework is due on Monday.

Then I had an idea. Why not let her inherit my unlimited data plan? I use my company’s smartphone all the time for my email and testing out apps. My data needs are likely a fraction of hers.

So, we switched. She picked up my cell phone number and unlimited data plan and I received her phone number and basic feature phone, which I have to admit is rather yucky. Ahh, the sacrifices we make for our children.

Comments

  1. BY Jeanne Shay says:

    I can relate. My husband and I finally had to get our two teenagers data plans and smart phones using the upgrades on our phones – they sure do run through phones – while we both have the lame phones with texting and no data plans. Someday we will upgrade, too, but they use it so much more anyway. One of those sacrifices we make while trying to pay tuition, etc. for our kids…

  2. BY Dawn Kawamoto says:

    Hi Cryptical,

    The unlimited plan does work with phone upgrades. I went from a BlackBerry to an iPhone 4S when my daughter and I switched. As for switching to Sprint, we’re on a family plan and all the moons have to align just right for us to come off of contract simultaneously.

    As for data bandwidth = water or electricity. You may not think so, but tell that to a 13-year-old…

    Dawn

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