After weeks of rumor mongering (Verizon isn’t great at keeping secrets), the nation’s leading wireless provider is definitely going to switch to a metered scheme for smartphone data. As a result, many will (sadly) kiss their unlimited plan on the Verizon network goodbye. Verizon’s spokeswoman Brenda Raney confirmed to FierceWireless that new pricing models will go into effect beginning this Thursday, July 7:

New smartphone customers will choose from one of four options: $10 for 75 MB per month, $30 for 2 GB, $50 for 5 GB or $80 for 10 GB. There will be an overage charge of $10 per GB of data.

Folks who already have a contract with Verizon and upgrade on or after July 7 will be allowed to upgrade to a newer smartphone and keep their unlimited smartphone data plan, similar to AT&T. Verizon’s move wasn’t unexpected: Rival AT&T has also switched to a usage-based model which went into effect from June 7. The carrier is also rumored to lower prices for iPhone 4 to $150. So how do Verizon’s prices compare to AT&T’s?

Verizon’s monthly allowances are different from those of AT&T so comparing their respective offerings is anything but easy, but we can extrapolate. The general feeling is that the big red carrier is offering less data for more money than its rival. For example, for fifteen bucks a month AT&T is offering 200MB of data transfer, while Verizon sells just 75MB for five bucks less. Two gigabytes are a $25 value with AT&T and $30 with Verizon. Working into Verizon’s favor is the lack of a 10GB AT&T plan. Plus, AT&T will slap you more in overage charges: $15 for any overage up to 200MB versus Verizon’s $10 per one gigabyte of overage.

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