AT&T now makes you pay even more for its fastest 5G speeds

AT&T Turbo logo.
AT&T

We have bad news for AT&T customers who always expect to get the fastest 5G speeds. The second-largest carrier in the U.S. will now make you pay extra for the fastest option. On Thursday, AT&T announced its new “Turbo” add-on, which it says will provide “enhanced data connectivity for real-time responsiveness.”

What this means in terms of network speeds compared to what everyday AT&T 5G customers get isn’t exactly clear.

In announcing its news, the company says the AT&T Turbo plan is built to support high-performance apps like gaming, social video broadcasting, and live videoconferencing. It also explains that the add-on is ideally used “if customers want less freezing or stuttering and lower latency.”

AT&T is celebrating being the first company to offer customers the option to purchase enhanced data connectivity. However, this suggests that AT&T 5G customers who previously enjoyed the highest speeds will no longer have access to those top speeds unless they pay extra. AT&T Turbo requires phones with 5G compatibility, such as the Google Pixel Pro 8 and iPhone 15 Pro Max.

It will be interesting to see whether Verizon and T-Mobile follow AT&T’s lead, and if so, when.

According to Erin Scarborough, AT&T’s president of broadband initiatives, AT&T Turbo will evolve as a service: “Today is only the beginning of how AT&T plans to enhance the customer experience through our network, and we look forward to evolving the possibilities of AT&T Turbo in the future.”

At launch, AT&T Turbo costs $7 per month extra, and you can add it to your account through the AT&T app for iPhone and Android-based devices.

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