The used and refurbished cell phone market keeps looking better and better… Remember that article we wrote yesterday? Lots of unanswered questions and hints at moving plans to cheaper services. Well, Verizon finally opened up and released the full details on the changes they will be implementing. Some of the things we mentioned yesterday have changed and the one question I had was answered. That question was, what if I am already upgraded to unlimited 4G LTE date? The good news is I can keep it… The bad news though…
Buying a Full Price or Refurbished Cell Phone May Be Your Only Option
You have to purchase a phone at FULL price in order to keep your unlimited data plan. You read that right. When my two year plan ends, and lets say I want to upgrade my phone to a Droid Razr MAXX, I have to buy it at full price instead of the discounted contract price in order to keep my unlimited data plan or purchase a used or refurbished cell phone. Compared to Virgin Mobiles $35 a month plan, paying hundreds of dollars more AND almost three times the amount a month to use Verizon is unreasonable and financially insane.
So technically unlimited data isn’t dead, but it may as well be. If you want to upgrade to a brand new Verizon phone, like the iPhone, instead of paying $200 you would be paying well over $600 to keep unlimited data. That is just not possible for most folks, and financially silly. There is a silver lining though, you don’t have to pay full price for a new phone. I’m shamelessly plugging our very store here, but if you buy a used cell phone from us you’re probably saving hundreds of dollars already. Now, it’s even more viable of a solution to buy used and refurbished cell phones from retailers. The phones, most of the time, will be behind the curve of the latest and greatest phones out there, but you’ll be getting them at such a discount compared to Verizon forcing you to pay full price.
I, on the other hand, will be switching my service to Virgin Mobile when my contract ends. They may not have the verity Verizon offers on phones, but I would rather pay a full price on a new phone with $35 a month bill, than pay a full price phone, that will be far more expensive than what Virgin Mobile offers, with a $90-$100 a month bill.
Who it Hurts Most
What really irks people is that this punishes the people who don’t abuse the unlimited data more than those that do. The people who buy new phones and only rake up a few GB will be forced into a tiered system while the abusers will most like keep doing what they are doing. Here’s the full statement to the Times from Verizon:
- Customers will not be automatically moved to new shared data plans. If a 3G or 4G smartphone customer is on an unlimited plan now and they do not want to change their plan, they will not have to do so.
- When we introduce our new shared data plans, Unlimited Data will no longer be available to customers when purchasing handsets at discounted pricing.
- Customers who purchase phones at full retail price and are on an unlimited smartphone data plan will be able to keep that plan.
- The same pricing and policies will be applied to all 3G and 4GLTE smartphones.
That is as straight forward as you can get. Whether this will be their final word on this, it’s too early to say. Things may change in the coming months of the public outcry to this is loud enough. But I don’t really see Verizon budging on this.
Sources: The Times