More and more companies are relying on wireless-enabled tablets to empower their mobile employees and support their business processes. Unlike data cards which come with a 5 GB starting plan option, tablet plans typically start at 2 GBs. Like most companies, if you’re experiencing an increasing ratio of tablets to data cards there’s an opportunity to generate beneficial savings by utilizing the appropriate quantity of 2 GB shared plan options with a pool of data cards. The lower cost point of the 2 GB tablet plan will result in an overall reduction in your monthly data charges.
If you are not currently using data pooling check out our tip ‘Finding Savings by Pooling your Data Cards’. If you are already taking advantage of data pooling for data cards, the majority of you have noticed your average usage rate leaves a sizeable gap of unused gigabytes which you are nonetheless paying for each month. This is due to the lack of plan options below the 5 GB floor plan for data cards. Average data usage varies dramatically by company, however, tablets typically run at lower data usage rates than data cards. While the average tablet usage may be as much as 1 GB lower than data cards, tablets offer a plan option that is 3 GB lower and twenty dollars less than data cards. Herein lies the opportunity to reduce your monthly data pool buffers resulting in bottom-line monthly savings.
Many companies have reached the point of supporting a higher count of tablets than data devices. By increasing the ratio of 2 GB tablet plans to 5 GB data plans the pool average drops 1 GB. The higher the ratio of tablets in a pool, the more flexibility one has in sizing pool buffers. The 2 GB data share plan provides an opportunity to significantly close the data buffer gap.
The graph above demonstrates an example of 800 data devices representing a higher than normal average usage. The data card only pool shown in red produced an average of 1GB of unused but paid for data. In green shows the new blended pool made up of 67% data cards and 33% tablets which reduces the buffer from 1.0 down to 0.5 GBs. By using a blend of 2 GB and 5 GB plans, the amount of paid-for but unused data is reduced significantly. A reduction in the total amount of data purchased and available to the pool in the blended example is where savings are generated.
Your actual savings will depend upon the plan prices previously used for the tablets before combining them in the blended pool. Non-pooled tablets are typically a mix of 3 GB and 5 GB plans ranging from $40 to $50 list. The 2 GB Share plans are priced at $30 list. Our experience is that most pools will have an adequate buffer even with all tablets on 2 GB share plans. The example illustrated above equates to over $3500/month in savings generated from blending pools.