Verizon Wireless to charge customers $30 for upgrading to a new phone

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Comments

  • Reply 41 of 64
    cameronjcameronj Posts: 2,357member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by EdipisReks View Post


    they certainly aren't the only politicians that will screw over the electorate, but conservative politicians seem to be the only ones who vocally make it their stated mandate.



    So you're saying you prefer the one who lies to you?
  • Reply 42 of 64
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    This doesn't invite antirust scrutiny?!



    ^%#$*&.



    As long as they didn't discuss it.



    Airlines do this all the time. One airline raises its fees and the others all follow suit. Or if the others don't follow suit, the first one rescinds the increase. You're allowed to respond to market pricing changes. You just can't collude to change them.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bongo View Post


    What the article doesn't seem to include is that AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have been charging this fee for quite awhile now. AT&T was charging $18 and it sounds like they are going to raise it to $30 to match Verizon. Sprint charges $36 and T-Mobile charges $18.



    Apple Insider is making much to do about nothing. You're paying $100+ a month....you shouldn't worry about $30 every two years.



    One more reason for me to change.



    Here's the way it plays out. I have 2 lines. I get an iPhone and my daughter usually gets an Android phone (she insists on a physical keypad since she sends several thousand text messages per month.



    AT&T 2 year expense

    $199 for iPhone

    $99 for Android Phone

    $3,600 monthly fees ($150 per month)

    $30 upgrade fee

    Total: $3,928



    Straight Talk 2 year expense

    $699 for iPhone

    $499 for Android Phone

    $2,160 for monthly fees ($45 per month per line)

    Total: $3,358



    Now, Straight Talk uses the AT&T network, so I won't be giving anything up on reception. So I save $570 every 2 years by using Straight Talk instead of AT&T. And Straight Talk gives me unlimited data - with AT&T I only have 2 GB for one phone and something like 200 K for the other, so I occasionally get overcharges, as well. In addition, I would imagine that AT&T gets a better price on the phones than I do, so the have some additional profit there.



    Now, I wonder if someone at AT&T can explain to me how it is that Straight Talk is able to make a profit on this and I still save $570. Seems to me like AT&T is making PLENTY of money, so all this whining about needing to have extra charges to make up for the subsidies is nonsense.
  • Reply 43 of 64
    Nothing like incenting your customers to switch to your competitor...
  • Reply 44 of 64
    Mr. Cook, this will be your first real test. You can either be on Verizon's team or continue Apple's practice by thinking of your customers first. What will it be?
  • Reply 45 of 64
    daylove22daylove22 Posts: 215member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kozchris View Post


    ATT already charges some BS upgrade fee, i think it was $18 per phone when i upgraded to the latest 4S. The fee is for them to update their customer records. You know, the records which already have all my information. Nickel and dime @#[email protected]#[email protected]



    When i asked them to wave the fee they refused and when i asked what it was for they said it was also for them to pay employees at the store to help me decide what phone is best for me. I never even talked to them before upgrading nor would i want to.



    What sucks is that I'm pretty sure the other carriers do the same BS.



    I would not complain since anywhere else in the world you have to pay full price for a new phone.
  • Reply 46 of 64
    trip1extrip1ex Posts: 109member
    Let me get this straight. They are going charge you an extra fee when you buy a new phone because you are not going to continue to subsidize the old phone that you already paid off.



    This is the most backasswards fee I have heard of in a long time.



    Monopoly power!
  • Reply 47 of 64
    trip1extrip1ex Posts: 109member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by daylove22 View Post


    I would not complain since anywhere else in the world you have to pay full price for a new phone.



    News flash. You pay full price for your new phone in the US too if not more.
  • Reply 48 of 64
    gprovidagprovida Posts: 247member
    I have AT&T and I guess I can still with them doe $30 when I get an iPhone 5 or switch to Verizon. And I assume the same logic applies to starting with Verizon and switching to AT&T.
  • Reply 49 of 64
    I don't understand what Verizon is doing? Why would you deliberately push your customers to AT&T? Every 2 years, just swap carriers. Become a new customer each time.
  • Reply 50 of 64
    cvaldes1831cvaldes1831 Posts: 1,832member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    Here's the way it plays out. I have 2 lines. I get an iPhone and my daughter usually gets an Android phone (she insists on a physical keypad since she sends several thousand text messages per month.



    AT&T 2 year expense

    $199 for iPhone

    $99 for Android Phone

    $3,600 monthly fees ($150 per month)

    $30 upgrade fee

    Total: $3,928



    Straight Talk 2 year expense

    $699 for iPhone

    $499 for Android Phone

    $2,160 for monthly fees ($45 per month per line)

    Total: $3,358



    The unsubsidized iPhone is $649 not $699. You need to pay $15 for each Straight Talk SIM but there's no activation fee. Also, service comes down to about $42 a month if you prepay a few months in advance.



    Quote:

    Now, Straight Talk uses the AT&T network, so I won't be giving anything up on reception. So I save $570 every 2 years by using Straight Talk instead of AT&T. And Straight Talk gives me unlimited data - with AT&T I only have 2 GB for one phone and something like 200 K for the other, so I occasionally get overcharges, as well. In addition, I would imagine that AT&T gets a better price on the phones than I do, so the have some additional profit there.



    Now, I wonder if someone at AT&T can explain to me how it is that Straight Talk is able to make a profit on this and I still save $570. Seems to me like AT&T is making PLENTY of money, so all this whining about needing to have extra charges to make up for the subsidies is nonsense.



    Straight Talk does not provide international long distance calling nor international roaming. Of course, with an unlocked handset you would have the opportunity to use a local carrier's SIM.



    Straight Talk's customer service is pretty low rent. Also, I'm pretty sure that MMS doesn't work, nor do you get Visual Voicemail. Straight Talk's margins are probably lower, so yeah, AT&T shouldn't be whining.



    AT&T's dividend yield is 5.70%; America Movil (parent company of TracFone and thus Straight Talk) has a dividend yield of 1.10%, so the shareholders are getting less money.
  • Reply 51 of 64
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,437member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by GregInPrague View Post


    You may be well intentioned, but I believe it doesn't matter who you elect. Congress with majority democrats passed bank reform legislation in 2009 to protect against all the evil things banks were doing to steal money from poor people. Now banks just find different ways to nickel and dime people, mostly the same poor people that the legislation was supposed to help. (eg. no more free checking accounts, but if you carry a high enough balance you still get free checking)



    The same would be the case with phone companies if legislation was passed. They're going to get their money one way or another. If you close this hole they'll just go the other direction. You can't legislate business into a corner, there's always another way.



    What the Government can do, although this wouldn't change the amount we pay, is to enforce clear advertising and billing practices. They shouldn't be permitted to advertise a $60 a month plan when that plan actually costs $83 with taxes and fees. They shouldn't be permitted to imply that certain fees are "government fees" when they're not. They shouldn't be permitted to advertise that an upgrade to a new iPhone (after two years) is $199 when it's actually $229. They should HAVE to tell you exactly how much you're going to be billed. Call AT&T or Verizon and ask them for a given plan how much your bill will be including fees and taxes. They won't tell you. That should be illegal.



    When landline telephones were first developed, Bell Telephone was given a monopoly in return for providing "universal service" - telephone service to everyone at low cost, even in markets that weren't profitable.



    As the Government has permitted these cell phone companies to merge and acquire other companies, for all practical purposes we're down to only two companies: AT&T and Verizon. If there's only two, their pricing should be subject to government regulation. And maybe AT&T and Verizon didn't plan together to charge a $30 fee for the upgrade, but when one copies the other, it's a difference without a distinction from a consumer standpoint. This also should be regulated.



    From a marketing standpoint, I think banks, airlines and these phone companies are making a big mistake. It's a way to raise prices without raising prices, but customers hate it and I believe it alienates the marketplace. I don't think it makes for a strong business model when most of your customers hate you because there's always a new technology coming down the road that will enable your customers to escape you. If WiFi were to become ubiquitous, for example, you really wouldn't need the phone companies at all.
  • Reply 52 of 64
    dualiedualie Posts: 331member
    And there will be no shortage of suckers willing to pay.
  • Reply 53 of 64
    yensid98yensid98 Posts: 302member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dualie View Post


    And there will be no shortage of suckers willing to pay.



    Well there's not much alternative besides not upgrading - ever, or switching providers when you do upgrade and paying them an activation fee that most likely is just about the same price as the upgrade fee.



    Consumers are screwed every which way with the tele-cos.
  • Reply 54 of 64
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yensid98 View Post


    Well there's not much alternative besides not upgrading - ever?



    Ooh! Ooh! That's what we do. We've only upgraded once since getting cell phones in 2001.



    Our current models are seven years old. They must be so mad with us, holding them back.



    They can deal with it until they start allowing iPhones without data.
  • Reply 55 of 64
    cameronjcameronj Posts: 2,357member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by trip1ex View Post


    Let me get this straight. They are going charge you an extra fee when you buy a new phone because you are not going to continue to subsidize the old phone that you already paid off.



    This is the most backasswards fee I have heard of in a long time.



    Monopoly power!



    Actually it's not, it makes perfect sense - every time they subsidize a new phone for you, it's a HUGE expense for them. You become a much less profitable customer with every new phone you get subsidized. I'm not sure why you think it's backwards. They want customers who keep one subsidized phone (and of course keep paying the same monthly amount) for as long as possible.



    It sucks, for sure, and if they would just break out the subsidy (and end its payback) this would not happen, but with the subsidy situation as it is today, I don't see how you could be confused that they want to punish people who get new phones often.
  • Reply 56 of 64
    cameronjcameronj Posts: 2,357member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post


    I don't understand what Verizon is doing? Why would you deliberately push your customers to AT&T? Every 2 years, just swap carriers. Become a new customer each time.



    Problem is that doesn't save you money. They have new customer sign-up fees, and existing customer upgrade fees. And they all work out the same. If I can do simultaneous data and voice on VZ with the iPhone 6, I'm going to see what kind of deal I can swing by switching, but the rack rate (what you get without bargaining with them) is the same if you stay or if you switch.
  • Reply 57 of 64
    bartfatbartfat Posts: 432member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post


    They all ready charge a service activation fee anytime you reup your contract.



    Looks like I'll finish my AT&T contract, demand they unlock my phone and head to tmobile or such. They will be so happy to see me that they will probably pay me $30 to sign up



    Yeah, I would imagine if T-Mobile gets the iPhone, they'll quickly backtrack as they start losing customers right when contracts end...
  • Reply 58 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sandyf View Post


    Time to bail the 2 year upgrade carousel. Given all the wifi availability, I'll keep my iPhone 4 (and iPad 3) for the simple convenience of contacts, emails, reading, video, browsing, ad infinitum, and buy a dumb-phone family plan with no forced data and unending charges. Unless you're compensated by your company, a dumb-phone is pretty smart.



    Good luck with that wifi while your riding down the highway and trying to help the driver figure something out. I'm constantly looking things up, like hours, reviews, phone numbers, etc. Plus, on long car rides, it gives me something to do besides sleep.
  • Reply 59 of 64
    jack99jack99 Posts: 157member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yensid98 View Post


    Why isn't the DOJ investigating this insane business practice? Charing users a start up fee is bad enough (I still don't understand why a provider needs money to start my service) but charging users a fee when they stay with their carrier and upgrade is outrageous.





    Ummm, here's the thing. People here on AI bash on the DOJ and cry foul anytime they bring suit against Apple for anticompetitive practices as defined under the FTC or Sherman Act. These are laws that have existed for decades and withstood all manner of Apple fanboy hate. But a $30 fee? It's not illegal for a company to slap a higher price tag or an extra fee for a good or service.





    I'm not saying I particularly love this fee. The bigger issue not enough people are paying attention to is the lack of competition in the smartphone data market. The DOJ and the FTC won't file antitrust suits just because a company decides to change prices without a finding some kind of finding it's linked to anticompetitive behavior.





    Let's be a little more consistent, shall we?
  • Reply 60 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kozchris View Post


    ATT already charges some BS upgrade fee, i think it was $18 per phone when i upgraded to the latest 4S. The fee is for them to update their customer records. You know, the records which already have all my information. Nickel and dime @#[email protected]#[email protected]



    When i asked them to wave the fee they refused and when i asked what it was for they said it was also for them to pay employees at the store to help me decide what phone is best for me. I never even talked to them before upgrading nor would i want to.



    What sucks is that I'm pretty sure the other carriers do the same BS.



    I was pretty surprised to see the "upgrade fee" when I got my 4S in October. It seemed rotten to me, especially since it wasn't clearly stated anywhere that this "fee" would be levied on top of the phone price. I called up AT&T and complained and they agreed to waive it for me, but they said that now I know about the fee so they won't waive it for me in the future if I want to upgrade.



    It does seem like a dirty way to do business, but over the years Verizon Wireless and Sprint have done even more shady things to make a quick buck off of me, so there aren't a lot of options.
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