Verizon and AT&T have both said in in the past six months that they were planning to launch shared data plans for phones and tablets. Both companies currently offer separate data plans for separate devices. That is, if you have an iPhone and a 3G iPad, your iPhone data network is paid directly to Verizon or AT&T on your phone bill, while your iPad data plan is paid separately, through your iTunes store account. Under the new plans, users would be able to unify the two bills, paying both at once and eliminating the hassle of separate charges.
There is no word yet on how soon these new plans will be rolling out. Engaget is reporting that a source inside Verizon had seen references to “account level data plans” in employee training materials. Presumably the new plans will be available soon, but until Verizon makes an official announcement, there is no way to be sure when. Given that AT&T made their announcement about the shared data plan a full six months before Verizon, they aren’t likely to let Verizon get much of a jump on them, which means that we can probably expect AT&T to make an announcement not long after Verizon does.