Sometimes good things don’t last. That seems to be the case for unlimited data plans on the Verizon Wireless network. Verizon’s CFO, Fran Shammo, dropped the bad news during a webcast of an investor’s conference in which he stated that the wireless carrier would replace unlimited data plans with usage-based pricing.Verizon’s unlimited data plan was a competitive advantage for the company when it launched the iPhone in February. Verizon offered a $30 unlimited data plan with the iPhone compared to AT&T’s $25 data plan which tops out at 2GB a month. AT&T subscribers going over their 2GB monthly allotment automatically get 1GB more for an additional $10.AdChoices广告The announced tiered pricing by Verizon shouldn’t be news to anyone. Back in September of last year, we reported that Verizon’s CEO announced that the carrier would see tiered data pricing within the next four to six months. Clearly, the timing for such a move was delayed possibly due in part to the iPhone launch, but it is clear Verizon is committed to return to its plan of eliminating unlimited data plans.During the investor’s conference, Shammo also hinted that a new version of the iPhone might be around the corner. Though the exact timing for the launch wasn’t given, it seemed clear that Shammo was prepping investors that in conjunction with the launch of a new iPhone the company would take a bit of a hit during the quarter.Besides the financial impact of such a launch, some analysts were concerned about customer backlash as a result of launching the iPhone 4 in February only to launch a new iPhone a few months later. Appeasing these early adopters of the Verizon iPhone may cost Verizon some additional financial impact to a quarter already seeing some strain.Read more at ReutersBrian’s OpinionWhile not entirely unexpected, I must admit I am a bit bummed with the notion that Verizon is going the way of other wireless carriers and eliminating its unlimited data plans. To be fair to Verizon, I understand that continuing to offer unlimited data plans while iPhone adoption grows on the network is unsustainable. It’s safe to assume that we will probably see two to three tiers from Verizon for data plans with the highest one maxing out at 2GB a month.While nobody likes to think of their data usage as a fuel tank that can only be filled up once a month without additional cost, I think many people would be surprised to find out they are nowhere close to 2GB of monthly usage with the unlimited plan they have today. Still, even I don’t like the notion of being fenced in no matter how big the backyard is. Smaller carriers will surely attempt to keep their unlimited data plans as a competitive advantage to AT&T and Verizon Wireless, but everyone should expect that eventually all wireless carriers will go the way of tiered data plans. When that day comes, I guess I will have a story to tell my grandchildren of the wild west days when we were free to roam the Internet on our mobile devices without a care in the world.