$199 and $299? Maybe not for you! Read on...
The price was announced.
$199 and $299 for an upgrade iPhone.
The applause was wild, but the details were left out.
A quick visit to Apple's site tells you the same info. $199 and $299 for the 8 and 16 gigabyte iPhones, respectively. Look closely and you will notice the small asterisk (the * symbol...). Follow it to the bottom of the page and you will see the following:
"Requires new 2-year AT&T rate plan, sold separately"
Ok, but what does that mean? There are no other prices listed, and it is widely known that you can't activate a 3G iPhone without renewing your existing contract or starting a new one. That means that everyone gets this price, right? One would think, but read on...
The plot thickens as the one and only BoyGenius fields an At&t email. The email can be read in its entirety at the following link:
BoyGenius Report: At&t Email about new iPhone
I will post the important part that you may not want to see, but need to be aware of.
The email says, and I quote:
Upgrade Eligibility and Qualified Upgrade Pricing
Upgrade eligibility will be determined based on standard upgrade eligibility rules. Customers must be upgrade eligible to receive the qualified upgrade pricing. However, not all customers will be qualified upgrades. AT&T has not determined the price of the 3G device for non-qualified upgrades.
All customers will be required to sign a 2-year agreement. There will not be a “no commitment” price for the iPhone 3G.
No, don't rub your eyes, don't check your glasses or contacts, you read it correctly. Not all of us are eligible for the $199/$299 pricing. If you are a current iPhone user, you are set. If you are a new customer, you are set. If you are a current At&t customer and are upgrade eligible, you are set.
What if you are a "middle of your contract" customer and your phone isn't an iPhone, like myself and many others? You are not set. We are the ones being talked about as "non-qualified" for upgrade. We are the ones that the prices haven't been determined for.
What does this mean? Will we have to pay $400 and $500, the existing 8 and 16 gigabyte prices, for our iPhones? Will our iPhones still be cheaper?
Only time will tell, but I think it would be a good idea to cross your fingers and say a little prayer. It also begs to question, would it be worth it to find a cheap, used iPhone on Craigslist to activate and use until the 3G is dropped, just to be certain that you are eligible for upgrade pricing? Until we know what the "non-qualified" pricing will be, that is just another question that will go unanswered.
This day is not turning out as well as I would have liked. First, no release until July 11th. Second, no mention of cut and paste, universal landscape keyboard, or MMS. Third, the only real upgrades are 3G and GPS, the one thing we never thought Apple would do (not offer more upgrades, that is)... I am still highly interested in the new iPhone, and I still have every intention of buying one depending on the "real" price, but today has seriously been very lackluster when compared to the previous hype. Especially after reading this At&t email...
Last edited by CrazEtooN; 06-09-2008 at 09:13 PM.
- 06-09-2008, 09:08 PM #2
- 06-09-2008, 09:09 PM #3
- 06-09-2008, 10:20 PM #4
Great - I'm one of those that might be f)^*&^# then. Signed 2 year agreement with ATT 10/2007. Just paid my bill for July so I think I'm eligible for "an equipment upgrade" in October 2008. Now, I'll gladly sign a new 2 year agreement if they'll give me a 3G iPhone for $299(16GB). But if can't upgrade or extend my existing account, I'm going to be seriously miffed. "Put out" as our Brit friends would say across the pond. So far, I've been truly pleased with ATT (was expecting horror, got just the opposite). Hopefully they'll offer something like the above so that folks like me who want to 'upgrade' to the new iPhone and are willing to sign our lives away for an additional 24 months to do so.
- 06-09-2008, 10:34 PM #5
Well *IF* I can pay the "no commitment" price and *NOT* have to renew my contract then I'm OK with it. I should be able to walk out of the AT&T or Apple store with the same contract I currently have.
But I'll be damned if I have to pay full price and still have to renew the contract. Nothing indicates this will be the case. It appears they've gone back to a normal phone pricing and rules.
Normally a new contract discount is $150 on a subsidy locked phone.
EG: $450 for a PDA. New customers get it for $300. But that same PDA unlocked is normally $550.
Since the iPhone won't be subsidy unlocked, then I don't expect to pay the additional $100 premium above and beyond a the 'standard' $150 more.
Here's a NYT blog that also gives some insight in to the pricing.
According to a forum post on Howard Forums, an AT&T internal memo says they have not yet determined the 'no commitment pricing.'
With other phones, you can walk in, drop the retail, "no commitment," price and walk out contract free. With the iPhone, this doesn't exist, hence the confusion and irritation about the pricing speculation that has popped up. If you are going to FORCE me to sign a new contract, there is no reason I shouldn't be able to get the phone for the discounted price. There is absolutely NO reason for there to even be a "to be determined" price. None.
Instead of your usual, "no commitment" price that you can pay if you are not upgrade eligible, not new, or just don't want a contract; and a subsidized, upgrade or new contract price there will be two OTHER options for the new iPhone.
1. If you are an EXISTING iPhone user, a new customer, or upgrade eligible; you walk in, sign a new contract, drop $200-$300 bucks and go home happy.
2. If you are NOT an existing iPhone user, NOT a new customer, or NOT upgrade eligible; you walk in and pay the "to be determined price" and you STILL have to sign a new contract, and you go home not so happy.
There is just no option to not sign a new contract, yet the $200/$300 price points are still being reserved for "qualified" customers. It is just a messed up situation.
Read the email I linked to closely and you will see it all spelled out. Keep in mind, this is an actual At&t email, not a 3rd party source making guesses. The only hope is that the "to be determined" price ends up only being a few dollars —$50 or so— more than the announced prices, or that this crap just disappears, which would far and away be the better thing to happen.
Like I have said, I am sure the coming days will bring a real answer to this problem, lets just hope it is the answer we want to see.
EDIT: I read your link. The $30 data plan thing doesn't bother me at all, and it is only partially tied to the situation at hand. The $30 thing was actually kind of expected because ALL of At&t's other smartphones and PDAs have $30 data plans. I have been paying it for a long time, so it is a completely lateral price move for me.
It certainly hurts the existing iPhone users that are upgrading, but it is also sort of understandable if you look at the big picture. Honestly, the $30 data plan will be taken differently by the users depending on what device they used to use.
Last edited by CrazEtooN; 06-10-2008 at 01:22 AM. Reason: some minor spelling type errors
- 06-10-2008, 12:28 AM #7
this sounds a bit like the Blog rumor mill. I'll wait and see. If worse comes to worse, I'm fine with my Blackberry till my next upgrade period. I have a feeling that this will not be true despite all the horror stories one hears about AT&T
- 06-10-2008, 12:52 AM #8
- 06-10-2008, 03:59 AM #9
- 06-10-2008, 06:43 AM #10
1) sign a contract in an O2 or Carphone Warehouse store, for which you will probably need a UK address, a UK credit card and to pass UK credit checks (and even if you manage all of that you'll of course be contracted to pay at least £30 pcm for 18 months), or
2) buy it without contract ('Pay and Go') - no details yet but likely to be quite expensive.
Well, the front pages on the blogs haven't posted anything about this yet today... I am literally itching to know the final answer on what the pricing will be for anyone that isn't new, doesn't have an iPhone, and isn't eligible for upgrade.
- 06-10-2008, 01:10 PM #12
Okay... A "What if?" I sold my Refurbished iPhone on eBay about two weeks ago and changed my plan to one more appropriate for my current Treo 750. I wonder if I'll be eligible? OR, will the nice profit I made on the sale of my iPhone have to be plowed back into the purchase of a 3G?
- 06-10-2008, 01:36 PM #13
From what I read about the 'leaked' AT&T memo.
"Note: When the 3G device launches, all active postpaid customers in good standing with a 2G iPhone will be eligible to receive the qualified upgrade pricing for a 3G device regardless of service tenure. (Customers that would not otherwise be eligible due to tenure will be made eligible at launch)."
So if you CURRENTLY have an iPhone on AT&T, do NOT get rid of it until AFTER you get the 3G iPhone at a discount. I think there will still be plenty of demand on ebay for 1st gen. iPhones for many reasons.
- 06-10-2008, 02:16 PM #14
I am not buying a used iPhone until I see the actual pricing come out from At&t. If the used market value skyrockets and I miss my opportunity, so be it. I am not taking the chance at paying more than I have to by buying a 1st gen iPhone just so I am upgrade eligible.
For all we know, the "yet to be determined" price could only be $50-$100 more... At least that is what I keep telling myself.
- 06-10-2008, 07:59 PM #16
ok, being a little obsessive I talked to 5 seperate ATT reps today who all confirmed that there would be NO seperate higher pricing for those ATT Wireless customer (who don't own the old IPHONE) not in their contract renewal period. So ATT wireless customers even if they are not up for contract renewal CAN change to the new IPHONE at the $199 and $299 prices which are considered the regular and non-discounted prices for these phones. I expected att customer service agents to contradict each other They didn't on this.
- 06-10-2008, 08:09 PM #17
- 06-10-2008, 08:13 PM #18
Oh well...I guess I just bought a backup iPhone.
I'll re-up with the one I just scored on eBay and be ready for the new 3G, when it comes. I'll be on my way to Ecuador on release day, so I'll just wait to order until I get back.
- 06-10-2008, 10:56 PM #20iPhone Newbie
- 16 Posts
Well, I thought that that the $199/$299 was firm but guess again.
I would have thought that just like last time ANYONE was free to buy a new iPhone and renew a contract even in your initial contract wasn't up.
I really don't want to renew a contact AGAIN but I am a current iPhone user and 9 months into my "new" contract.
- 06-24-2009, 11:10 AM #21
I'm in the same boat w/o a paddle - i'm 7mo in my contract, and me want 3GS!!!
has there been any news or rumors on if AT&T is going to make it right an let us upgrade too?
I'm fine w/putting mine on ebay to offset upgrade cost, but i don't want AT&T to soon after permit the upgrade and I'm out the $200 difference I could have netted.
any thoughts/news/rumors out there?
- 06-24-2009, 11:45 AM #22
At only 7 months in to a 2 year contract, you've only fulfilled 29% of your commitment in return for the subsidy of $400 they gave you on your last iPhone.
So giving you another for $200, at $400 subsidy means $800 in subsidies for a 24+7 month period of service.
That $200 additional cost is, in fact, to buy you your last 2 year contract which you haven't paid back.
Now, as you may know, people who pay over $99 are given upgrades every 12 months. $69-$99, about every 18 months, and below $69 you're at 21 months.
It would make more sense if AT&T pro-rated the subsidy on an early upgrade. Say you're 7 months in on an 18 month upgrade cycle, well just give you the iPhone for $199 + ($200/18*(8-7)) = $199+$100. That would seem fair, to pay $100 more for being nearly 1/2 way through your upgrade eligibility period.
For whatever reason the early upgrade fee is flat, however. And I'm not convinced the phone is really $600 to start with. I personally thing $200 is gouging, especially considering the ETF on canceling is $175-Pro rated.
Anyway, I don't mean to sound like I'm defending AT&T. If anything the irritation is in the way the price is advertised, as $199. It's not. It should be advertised as $599, or $199 for new activations and qualified upgrades.
I wanted the new iPhone, I paid $200 more because I'm 11 months in to a 21 month upgrade period. And I didn't like it. But I knew buying the iPhone 3G was a 2 year commitment, not a 1 year commitment. If I want to upgrade early, I have to pay the price.
My wife's line is over $99, so she was a few weeks from her upgrade. AT&T moved it up a few weeks for her which was nice.
Last edited by taylorh; 06-24-2009 at 11:50 AM.
- 06-24-2009, 12:46 PM #23
taylor - clearly you are able to lauch a rocket into space with all that magic and mathematical wizardry, and kudos to you for that... I just want the 3GS, and I want it now!!!
hahaha-just playing... I do want to the 3GS, cause I use it for video with cycorder and badly want the better recording capabilities. you're argument is totally fair, and I would agree to that formulae: i think though that after the 2G users got the upgrade it should be available to us 3Gers too, much less my girlfriend got the 3G 2mo ago and has no chance of upgrading either.
has anyone started a facebook group or twitter group or campaign to harass AT&T to giving us a better deal?
- 06-24-2009, 08:07 PM #24
The thing that gets me is I paid full price-$499-for my 3G in December because I was 11 months into my contract with a Blackberry Curve. Even tho' I received zero subsidy from ATT then, I STILL am not eligible for subsidized pricing on the 3GS.
- 06-25-2009, 08:38 AM #25
ufff - $499, that's rough...
does anyone know if when you do choose to upgrade the phone, do you turn in your existing 3G or do you get to keep it? ie. if you keep it you have a nice ipod and app machine, right? or one can ebay it for some cash to offest 3GS upgrade cost...
anyone know if the 3G must be relinquished upon upgrade?