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Verizon confirms tiered data plans and hot-spot charge for July 7

The carrier bids farewell to unlimited data plans this week and says hello to usage-based options. Verizon also is adding a charge to use its mobile hot-spot feature.

Update on Tuesday, July 5 at 1:15 p.m. PT: The $10-per-month data plan will not be available for smartphone users.

Verizon Wireless officially confirmed today that it will replace its unlimited data plans with tiered options starting Thursday.

Spokeswoman Brenda Raney told FierceWireless that consumers will have their choice of four data allotments: $10 for 75MB per month, $30 for 2GB per month, $50 for 5GB per month, and $80 for 10GB per month. The cheapest tier is avaialble only for feature phones. Subscribers with an iPhone or a WebOS, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows Phone 7 device will have to choose one of the remaining three options.

As expected, existing customers will be grandfathered in with the $30 unlimited plan, even with future handset upgrades. Raney also confirmed that overage charges would be $10 per GB of data, regardless of plan.

But that's not all. The carrier also is adjusting its LTE mobile hot-spot service, available on handsets like the Droid Charge, LG Revolution, and HTC ThunderBolt. So far, all customers have used the mobile hot spot free of charge and without bandwidth restrictions.

Starting Thursday, however, subscribers currently using the feature will have to pay an extra $30 per month for unlimited access. Anyone who adds the hot-spot option after July 7 will pay $20 per month, but they'll get just 2GB of data to use however they see fit.

Verizon's news means that Sprint will be the last of the major wireless providers offering customers a truly unlimited data plan. T-Mobile comes close to giving its subscribers as much data as they'd like, but speeds are throttled should users go over their allotted amount.

Many mobile users who are anxious over which rate plan is right for them might want to take a look at a few recent bills. According to recent findings from Nielsen, the average Android user goes through less than 600MB per month. It's possible that some of you could end up saving money each month should you wind up with the right usage-based plan.