Sprint is quick to point out its smartphone data plans are still unlimited, unlike its rivals that have all gone to tiered models. It has also been slow to match its rivals by raising its early termination fee (ETF), but a leaked document indicates that is being rectified by Sprint. The internal document shows that Sprint will raise the ETF to $350 on September 9 for "advanced" devices, which includes smartphones, notebooks, netbooks, and tablets.
AT&T and Verizon have already raised their ETFs to $325 and $350 respectively, and Sprint joining the club means it is harder than ever for customers in the U. S. to get out of those pesky two-year contracts. T-Mobile is the only major carrier in the U. S. that hasn't raised its ETF, but if it becomes part of the AT&T dynasty that is a moot point.
I recently cancelled my Overdrive hotspot contract with Sprint, and I was hit by the big $200 ETF. That was hard enough to swallow but I am glad I got out when I did given this change.