For a while there, it looked as though unlimited data was gone and lost forever. Just as we are all beginning to use more data to browse the web and stream content on lightning fast 4G networks, the carriers decide to charge a premium for it. AT&T’s Mobile Share and Verizon’s Share Everything plans reverse the trends of old and ditch unlimited data in favor of a metered, shared use system, whereby unlimited calls and texts are now free, but you pay for every GB of data you consume.

Sprint has mixed things up with its Truly Unlimited plans. In contrast to the complicated shared data plans of AT&T and Verizon, with charges for each additional device and a shared bucket of data that everyone in the family digs into, Sprint offers unlimited data, calls, and texts for a flat monthly fee. If you work out the cost for three smartphones at Sprint ($179.98) it compares favorably to AT&T ($195) and Verizon ($200). The only catch is that you can’t use your mobile as a hotspot with the unlimited data plan. However, Sprint claims that the unlimited data is truly unlimited – no metering, no overage charges, and no throttling.

Families looking to keep their mobile plan costs reasonable should take note. In fact that’s the premise of Sprint’s latest ad which is obviously a dig at its big competitors. The ad, featured below, shows a family arguing about how to divide up their shared bucket of mobile data. It’s a fair point and with data use on the rise this is bound to be a real issue for many people. Let’s not forget we need a decent data allowance to really take advantage of these new 4G LTE networks.