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Should you upgrade to T-Mobile’s One or One Plus plans? We break it down

T-Mobile introduced a single plan to choose from called “T-Mobile One” in August — a plan with unlimited data, talk, and text. The first line costs $70, and the second adds an extra $50. Any additional line thereafter will cost $20 each. So a family of four, for example, will see a total cost of $160 in return for unlimited data on each line.

There are a few catches, though. First, and perhaps most importantly, all video playback on the One plan will be limited to a 480-pixel resolution. The un-carrier will offer $3 HD Video Day passes in October that let you stream videos at 1080p and higher for 24 hours. Secondly, tethering will only operate on 3G networks.

Finally, to get the listed price for the T-Mobile One plan, you have to sign up for Auto Pay, which automatically pays your bill each month. Otherwise, you’ll have to pay $5 more a month per device than what’s listed — so technically a family of four would pay $180 for unlimited data without Auto Pay. Yes, we agree that this is a stupid charge.

T-Mobile later introduced another option — the One Plus plan. For $25 more per line per month from the One plan, you can get 4G LTE unlimited tethering, and will be able to stream HD videos. Unfortunately, there’s a catch for the latter feature — you have to turn on the ability to watch HD videos every day.

How T-Mobile’s One plan affects you

It’s unfortunate T-Mobile’s One plan doesn’t offer HD video streaming and some 4G LTE tethering by default. Still, at least you have an option to have it all with the One Plus plan, albeit at $25 more per line and per month. The good news is if you like the Simple Choice plan you have now, you will not be forced to upgrade.

A T-Mobile spokesperson told Digital Trends that “there will always be a Simple Choice option; Simple Choice Unlimited will go away after Sept. 6.” Simple Choice unlimited was the old plan that offered a 14GB data bucket for tethering, and didn’t restrict HD video playback. The new T-Mobile One plan replaced it.

The Simple Choice fixed data options are still available, though they are less advertised on T-Mobile’s website. When you go to the checkout page, the website says to call a T-Mobile representative to “find out about your other options, including our Simple Choice Plans.”

“The best way to think about this is to remember the days of talk-time phone minutes,” the spokesperson said. “Customers used to have to pay for the number of talk minutes they wanted every month, until those plans went away and unlimited talk and text became standard. When those unlimited talk/text plans were first introduced, the ‘talk time’ minute plans didn’t immediately go away. It took customers some time to adjust.”

The fixed data Simple Choice plans will be phased out at some point, in favor of the T-Mobile One and One Plus plans. To recap, current subscribers can stay on their current plans, or upgrade to T-Mobile One or One Plus. New subscribers can opt for the latter newer plans, and will be able to choose from Simple Choice fixed data plans over the phone or at the store.

Related: T-Mobile is giving unlimited data to every customer, but there’s a catch

While the new plan may seem pricier for people on a fixed data rate, it does offer slashed prices across the board for some current subscribers on the unlimited data plan. Let’s take a look at T-Mobile One and Plus, how it compares with the Simple Choice plan, and whether you should upgrade.

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