Bye-bye unlimited 4G: Sprint institutes data usage caps

Sprint has announced that none of its customers with tablets, USB connection cards, or mobile hotspots will have unlimited 4G access anymore. Instead, the 3G and 4G data use will be combined and capped, with extra charges for overages. The restriction does not currently extend to mobile phones that are not used for tethering, and goes into effect next month.

Sprint has been beating its chest in ads about its unlimited data services, but that bragging point is quickly crumbling. Last month, a leaked document stated the company would start capping data via mobile phone hotspot at 5GB per month, with overage charges for both new and current customers.

That cap is now official: both new and old customers are getting their plans capped. Tablet, netbook, notebook, USB card, connection card users who used to have a limited amount of 3G data and unlimited 4G data have a combined limit for both kinds, in tiers of 3GB, 5GB, and 10GB. For every additional megabyte customers use after that,