The Verizon iPhone is only days away from being officially available across America, and much like other products that near a release date, the catches begin to roll in.
When Verizon announced the iPhone will be available on its carrier on January 11, journalists from around the world noticed that the phone was running iOS 4.2.5, which allowed anyone to turn the iPhone into a hotspot. The new feature will allow up to five WiFi-enabled devices to connect to the iPhone and share its data.
The Verizon iPhone will be the first to officially support this feature, but it will come at a price. As Macworld.com reported, Verizon will be charging customers $20 a month on top of their voice and data plan. The next catch is the hotspot will only have a 2GB allowance, and if you go over that, you will be charged an additional $20 per gigabyte.
Depending on your usage, especially with up to five devices connected to your phone, that 2GB allowance could be used up within a few hours. The Verizon iPhone will have its own pool of data usage for regular 3G surfing, separate from the hotspot data.
When iOS 4.2.5 (or 4.3) releases in the coming weeks, the hotspot feature may not be available through all carriers. As many iPhone owners in the United States already know, AT&T now officially supported tethering for the iPhone, so it will be interesting if the carrier will support the hotspot feature.