In Which a Telco Executive Makes Taking Sound Like Giving

Given just this quote from AT&T's mobile CEO, you'd be forgiven for thinking that "those small percentages"—heavier mobile data users—are going to gain something for reducing their usage. Not quite! Unless you count not paying new fees.

It's a curious use of a positive word: This isn't an incentive in the sense of the prospect of a nice dinner with your wife if you can close your store by 7:30; it's an incentive in the sense of not having said shop burned down because you didn't pay $1000 to that moody man and his friends who come by on the last Friday of every month. Unless AT&T is planning on dropping prices for light smartphone data users and increasing data prices for heavier users, these "incentives" aren't likely to save anyone any money.

This is far from the first time this exec, Ralph de la Vega, has hinted at plans like this, and it won't be the last. AT&T seems destined to tier their data plans—we're just waiting to see how. [NYT]