I've been thinking over the weekend about my post about the iPhone and the crap plans being offered. The problem is the lack of data covered by these plans. I reckon the stories in about a week's time will be all about the $2,000 bills iPhone users have been copping due to going over the data caps and getting the punitive excess data charges.

I poo-pooed Mark and Stilgherrian's idea of forming an MVNO, a virtual mobile phone company. I still think that's way harder than they think, but I have an alternative idea.

How about if you signed up for a mobile data plan and instead use VOIP for the phone part of it? You could use an online service for cheap outbound texting, and inbound texting could come to the mobile SIM's number. You'd have a landline number so people calling you would find it much cheaper. Though you might need a different number for texting.

One potential issue: what's the bet the mobile providers shape down VOIP so it's unusable?