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  • AT&T Hiking Early iPhone, Smartphone Upgrade Fees


    Calls to AT&T have confirmed looming speculation Monday about AT&T hiking its early upgrade and no-commitment pricing for the wireless carrier's expansive line of smartphones, including the iPhone. Although the changes take place this week, only customers who are presently ineligible for upgrade - or unwilling to sign a new two-year contract - will be effected by the across-the-board price hikes.

    It sounds as though AT&T is pinning the cost increase on the growing sophistication of smartphones and the added cost of keeping up with the times. AT&T reps, however (including the one I spoke with) have been widely quoted today stressing how "individual account needs" can still be addressed by AT&T on a one-on-one basis.

    The company's policy regarding upgrade eligibility, however, doesn't appear to have been altered. Simply put, customers who opt for an upgrade before 12 or 18 months into their contract, or who will only sign a new one year contract (rather than two) will have to pay the new prices to upgrade. For iPhone upgrades, customers are looking at $50 more (iPhone 3GS 8GB is $299, iPhone 4 16GB is $449, iPhone 4 32GB is $549).

    As some may recall, AT&T increased early upgrade fees on its smartphones last October from $75 to $200, although the iPhone was spared from that list. Many began speculating after Verizon got the iPhone earlier this year that AT&T would soon revise its early upgrade fees on the iPhone too as yet another measure to help rope in customers for the long haul in an increasingly competitive smartphone environment. It now looks like those folks were right.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: AT&T Hiking Early iPhone, Smartphone Upgrade Fees started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 55 Comments
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      While this news does suck, you do all realize that ATT is the only one that allows a 12 month upgrade at such a reduced price, right? Even Sprint just recently got rid of it unless you are a gold member (spending over $100 or so per month on your contract).

      Quote Originally Posted by trent_behunin View Post
      You people defending AT&T.... Did you read the article?? its AT&T that is going to increase the price of early upgrades, that means they are breaching the 2 year contract. I bought iPhone 4 last year with intent of paying early upgrade fee and getting the iPhone 5 if it came out on Verizon. So now that Verizon has the iPhone AT&T is desperate to keep it customers, because they know they are a far ********, and is will to screw us, their customers, in the process.
      There is nothing in your 2 year contract that says you will receive a phone yearly at the new contract price. Go ahead, give it a read.

      Quote Originally Posted by zeroskater61 View Post
      Not fully true... I got the first gen iPhone at a discount, year later I got the iPhone 3G at a discounted price, year later I got the iPhone 3Gs at a discounted price and guess what another year later I got the iPhone 4 at a discounted price and I already looked online under my account and it stated I'll be eligible for an iPhone discount in July 2011 since that's when I got my iPhone 4 last year in July.
      The price they are offering you isn't in your contract though good sir. Go read that actual contract. They were giving people yearly upgrades because they wanted to and people wanted them, not because they were bound by contract to do so.
    1. MYPHONEI's Avatar
      MYPHONEI -
      Calls to AT&T have confirmed looming speculation Monday about AT&T hiking its early upgrade and no-commitment pricing for the wireless carrier's expansive line of smartphones, including the iPhone. Although the changes take place this week, only customers who are presently ineligible for upgrade - or unwilling to sign a new two-year contract - will be effected by the across-the-board price hikes.
      What does this mean?

      I have an Upgrade coming due in a couple of months

      I have a 2 year contract, so what does that mean? You have to have a 2yr contract now and an unused Upgrade?

      To me this is unclear.
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by MYPHONEI View Post
      What does this mean?

      I have an Upgrade coming due in a couple of months

      I have a 2 year contract, so what does that mean? You have to have a 2yr contract now and an unused Upgrade?

      To me this is unclear.
      They will likely do what other companies (like SPrint) are doing. Those expecting the early upgrade this year will be honored. After that, you will no longer receive the upgrade. In short, current contracts will still get one more early upgrade, likely as a courtesy.
    1. MYPHONEI's Avatar
      MYPHONEI -
      Quote Originally Posted by sziklassy View Post
      They will likely do what other companies (like SPrint) are doing. Those expecting the early upgrade this year will be honored. After that, you will no longer receive the upgrade. In short, current contracts will still get one more early upgrade, likely as a courtesy.
      Thanks I thought so.
    1. kuhndsn's Avatar
      kuhndsn -
      Quote Originally Posted by Nasty99vette View Post
      Hey as*hole poisedon79 above me, if you wanna pay $600 on the iPhone 5 on launch day go ahead an pay it. For all of us that think AT&T are already effing crooks and they are! I'm sure we all wanna take advantage of the early upgrade we been use to and pay $199.00 you must work for AT&T

      Really guy? You have to result to acting like a little kid. Grow up and stop trolling! Also don't speak for everyone! No I do not like price increases, but I hate, haters that speak for others and result to being a kid with muscle on the internet even more. Your comments call for an apology to Poisedon79. Of course I am sure you are below that...
    1. romeoz's Avatar
      romeoz -
      AT&T should give previous iPhone owners an upgrade price always. I'll buy it regardless but it would be nice to get that discount on all my lines
    1. kuhndsn's Avatar
      kuhndsn -
      As long as I can keep my grandfathered data plan (unlimited).
    1. IXAdamOwnzXI's Avatar
      IXAdamOwnzXI -
      Quote Originally Posted by kuhndsn View Post
      Really guy? You have to result to acting like a little kid. Grow up and stop trolling! Also don't speak for everyone! No I do not like price increases, but I hate, haters that speak for others and result to being a kid with muscle on the internet even more. Your comments call for an apology to Poisedon79. Of course I am sure you are below that...
      Please get off your high horse. It's the internet. Even worse it's MMi. Who cares.
    1. tippmann004's Avatar
      tippmann004 -
      ok i know my contract but come on it not enough $399 to renew my contract for other 2 years u have to stick with this company i mean come on. I love AT&T as i love my iphone 3gs and 4 i would like to get iphone 5 as soon as it comes out. Ill pay 399 for and renew my contract but don't ask me to pay 50 more. I thought u guys want to join no to jump to Verizon.
    1. wolverinemarky's Avatar
      wolverinemarky -
      dont matter to me plan on selling my iphone 4 for 300-400 whenever the new iphone comes out and upgrading to iphone 5
    1. tippmann004's Avatar
      tippmann004 -
      well it does matter to me. Im keeping all my history of iphone since 3gs so i wont sell it.
    1. Poseidon79's Avatar
      Poseidon79 -
      AT&T was doing everyone a favor by doing any sort of early upgrade discount. The fact that they gave everyone a full discount to upgrade from the 2G to the 3G was amazing... but then people felt entitled to the same concession. From the 3G --> 3GS --> i4 they gave everyone $200 off after 12 months... not too bad. They're still going to give you $150 off retail which they don't have to do at all. Go over to Verizon and see if they treat you any better.
    1. tippmann004's Avatar
      tippmann004 -
      i think we will have to do that. but if they do at least i wont come back
    1. Team Infecti0n's Avatar
      Team Infecti0n -
      Wait, I can't extend my iPhone contract until August. Since I'm already under contract, will the price change affect me as well?
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
      This happens every year at upgrade time. People knowingly sign a TWO year contract with the understanding that you have to be under contract for at least 18 months before you are fully eligible for upgrade discounts... then after ONE year they totally forget about the deal they signed and start complaining. Give me a break. If you want an early upgrade fork out the extra cash but don't complain about the contract rules that YOU are asking to break!
      Well said Poseidon. We have to be adults to sign contracts and in doing so we are making an adult decision. We signed it for 2 years and we are LUCKY to have AT&T allow us to upgrade at 18 months. Everyone who is b*tching about this needs to man up and accept your responsibilities. That or buy your iPhones at the no commitment price or used on eBay. You have choices. Open your wallet, decide how much you want to spend, and make a decision.
    1. piston597's Avatar
      piston597 -
      they only hiked the price by $50... at least we know months before the phone is out so those who wanna early upgrade start saving...

      PS when i4 came out I sold my 3gs for $400 which covered the 4400 early upgrade for me... just sell your current iPhone for the i5 simple as that...
    1. Dranon's Avatar
      Dranon -
      Are you asking what happens if your contract is up and you do not upgrade?? If that is what you are asking your current contract is over and goes to a month to month billing you can cancel at anytime. The only time you sign a 2 year contract is at the time that you get a new device!
    1. XiOS's Avatar
      XiOS -
      Haha I am in an untouchable business account grandfathered in with the unlimited data and minutes... Good luck AT&T you already resigned a new unlimited plan...
      ... With no mention of this ever happening...???
    1. domanads2k4's Avatar
      domanads2k4 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
      AT&T was doing everyone a favor by doing any sort of early upgrade discount. The fact that they gave everyone a full discount to upgrade from the 2G to the 3G was amazing... but then people felt entitled to the same concession. From the 3G --> 3GS --> i4 they gave everyone $200 off after 12 months... not
      too bad. They're still going to give you $150 off retail which they don't have to do at all. Go over to Verizon and see if they treat you any better.
      They will new contract = discounted price
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      So what else is new? AT&T was doing something nice for its customers they didn't have to offer any kind of discount but they did any way. I guess ppl just don't care what the contract says as long as they get their new shiny phone right then, but when the next one comes out they have something to complain about...lame.