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pmt1209
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Scholar

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374 Messages

Sat, Dec 20, 2014 7:01 PM

WARNING:do not switch plans while phone upgrades are elligable..

Just a friendly warning if you are on a standard plan as I was and you have lines eligible for a upgrade do the upgrade before switching to say The Family Plan for you will lose the regular pay $199 to upgrade your phone, you will instead have to pay either $20+ more a month forever or lose any discounts on that line which again will raise your monthly rates forever.

Unfortunately for me I changed to the Family Plan and my wife’s line was well overdue for a upgrade and was told by the AT&T Rep at my local ATT store I could upgrade her line later same as always (I specifically asked this question knowing her phone was overdue for a upgrade but wanted to hold off till now and surprise her with a new phone for Christmas). I’ve contacted ATT both on online chat and by phone and sad to say all I got was a bunch of “we’re sorrys” BUT we can upgrade that line for $22 more a month, or pay $199 and lose all discounts on that line (which again will raise my monthly bill considerably or pay $649+taxes&fees…

To add insult to injury the ATT online chat crashed and the AT&T Online rep called my wife’s line asking her how she’d like the upgrade of her phone to be handled.. Really???? Needless to say the surprise is gone and so is upgrading her phone, going to look for alternatives after the holidays but one thing is for sure it will NOT be with AT&T… AT&T sales reps need to either be more well informed and/or AT&T should do right by their customers, especially ones who have been with them for over a decade.. It’s a shame they’re going to lose my 5 lines & thousands of dollars due to this debacle…

kdfederer

ACE - Expert

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12.7K Messages

8 years ago

You can still get the subsidized upgrades once you change to the Mobile Share Data plans. I just did on both of my lines. You do not have to pay forever, just for the lnegth of the purchase contract.

On the Mobile Share Data Plans, you receive a discount for being out of contract. If you get a subsidized phone, you lose the discount for the length of the contract (2 years). If you have the larger data plans (10GB or larger) in the long run it is cheaper to use NEXT. You pay full price for the phone but keep the $25 per month discount.

All the other providers are no longer subsidizing phone costs. One way or another, you will pay for the phone, either by losing discounts or paying full price for the phone. The choice is yours.

Teacher

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13 Messages

8 years ago

Though I'm apparently having considerable OTHER problems (see other posts by me) with my account after upgrading a single line of a three-line plan, the actual upgrading and different manners of doing it were quite straightforward.

 

Within the last couple weeks I upgraded one line of the plan to a smartphone from a dumbphone - JUST that would have cost $20/month more since the dumbphone (base) rate is $20/month and the smartphone rate is $40/month. However, at the same time as upgrading the line I bought a smartphone from ATT using one of their NEXT phone-buying plans. Because of THAT the smartphone rate was reduced to $25 ($15 off since we have a low-data plan) so our total plan cost simply increased by $5/month (not counting fees/taxes).

 

But undertand that's JUST the increase in the plan cost - we still have to pay the monthly cost of the new smartphone itself under the Next installment plan - that's another $24-ish/month.

 

This sounds similar to what you've related - $22/month more for the phone itself plus an increase in the plan cost as well. Depending on what Next installment plan you choose your plan cost actually can go down.

 

BUT...

 

If you choose the "get a phone for $199 and commit yourself to two years" manner of getting the new phone, you are giving up the Next discount so end up increasing your monthly plan cost by the full amount of the smartphone plan rate - ($40 - $20 base rate or $20 increased cost). But the longterm charges take into account getting a good phone for "only" $199.

 

That is to say, there isn't a whole lot of dollar difference over the long term.

 

From what I understand, ATT is trying to get away from subsidizing phone costs (about time!) - they WANT you to pay for the phone separate from any plan costs. Since that is exactly what we did we got the "smartphone" plan at a reduced price but have to pay a monthly price for the phone til it's paid off.

 

Anyway, your description reads exactly as it SHOULD read, as far as I can see; you have the option to get the phone in about 4 different ways - you simply have to choose which one bests fits your economic desires.

 

[note - awhile back we switched from a "regular plan" to a Mobile Value Share plan with a GByte of data - even though we had three dumbphones that didn't use data! This actually saved us something like $20/month! When we wanted to upgrade one of the lines to a smartphone all of the above took place, including deciding that the Next 24-month plan (Next 18?) was what we preferred. This allowed us to have a $5 increase in plan cost but also started up a $24-ish/month installment plan for the phone itself, a situation we're quite happy with]

pmt1209

Scholar

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374 Messages

8 years ago

First and most important issue is being told I could upgrade her line just like I always have AND having AT&T customer support just say "we're sorry OUR rep mislead you" and they're only solution was to offer me the Next plan or lose my data disount which is nothing more then i could have done anyway on my own..

Secondly buying a Galaxy or iPhone for $199 to renew a 2 year is not the same as paying $22 for 30 months =$640...

It's clear customer loyalty means nothing to "The New AT&T"..  I'm even a AT&T Premier Account Owner for my 5 lines.. that helped a lot, NOT...

kdfederer

ACE - Expert

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12.7K Messages

8 years ago


@pmt1209 wrote:

First and most important issue is being told I could upgrade her line just like I always have AND having AT&T customer support just say "we're sorry OUR rep mislead you" and they're only solution was to offer me the Next plan or lose my data disount which is nothing more then i could have done anyway on my own..

Secondly buying a Galaxy or iPhone for $199 to renew a 2 year is not the same as paying $22 for 30 months =$640...

It's clear customer loyalty means nothing to "The New AT&T"..  I'm even a AT&T Premier Account Owner for my 5 lines.. that helped a lot, NOT...


If you are on the Mobile Share Data Plans, you are paying more than just the $199 upgrade. You also lose the out of contract discount of up to $25 per month ($600), plus the cost of the subusidized phone $199 - $399 plus the upgrade fee of $40, way more than just the $699.

It depends on the plan that you are on whether the NEXT program or a subsidized upgrade is right for you.

ACE - Sage

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101.9K Messages

8 years ago

Your math is off.
The retail cost of the iPhone 6 64gb is $749 No change or increase in your service plan bill.

On a subsidized plan you pay $299 up front and by losing the $25 a month discount for 2 years, in effect another $600 A total of $899

On the Next plan you pay $31.21 a month for 24 months. A total of $749.04. No change in your service plan bill.

Next is by far the best deal.
pmt1209

Scholar

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374 Messages

8 years ago

Well honestly both show just how much i lost by not upgrading before switching our plan..

Upgrading before =$199

After=  $749 or $899...

Either way AT&T Store Rep's misinformation would have cost me either $550 or $700.. Key word being "would", instead its going to cost AT&T losing a customer with 5 smartphone lines in the very near future..

MicCheck

ACE - Expert

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12.3K Messages

8 years ago


@pmt1209 wrote:

Well honestly both show just how much i lost by not upgrading before switching our plan..

Upgrading before =$199

After=  $749 or $899...

 


I'm assuming you lowered your monthly payment when changing plans (or why would you have done it?)...you have to take that difference in payment into account with your "upgrading before" or "after" numbers to be fair. 

pmt1209

Scholar

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374 Messages

8 years ago

I don't have to take that into account, the upgrade was already a year overdue at the time, as I stated IF the AT&T rep gave me the "correct" information about what happens concerning that line's upgrade I would have upgraded that line right then and there and changed my plan at a later date.. Even AT&T's customer support agreed that this fact is true and as I stated earlier they're only response is/was "we're sorry you were not given the correct information"..

I personally think that the fact I've been a loyal AT&T customer for over 10 years should have meant more then a attitude of opps we're sorry our people screwed up but you lost that chance to upgrade that line as you could/should have...  Luckly other carriers are ready to pay my termination fees..

Teacher

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13 Messages

8 years ago


@pmt1209 wrote:

Well honestly both show just how much i lost by not upgrading before switching our plan..

Upgrading before =$199

After=  $749 or $899...


This is simply not true and it's very doubtful anyone, ATT or not, said these values were correct (since they are SO wrong).

 

=====

 

I found the ATT options extremely easy to understand and chose the Next method to buy a new smartphone for a line that was a dumbphone with the dumbphone-line pricing, $20/month. By using the Next method of line/phone upgrade the cost for that line went up by only $5/month because of a $15 data discount. All three lines on the plan were upgrade-eligible - all were dumbphone only and on a Mobile Value Share 1Gbyte plan (since that actually was cheaper than the Family Plan we had back in August)

 

Since I chose the 24-month phone payoff Next plan the phone itself will be costing us an additional $24-ish per month with no upfront cost.

 

That is, we upgraded one line to a smartphone line AND we bought a smartphone that we'll be paying off for two years for a total monthly increase of $29-ish.

 

Had I chosen the pay-up-front-subsidized method the phone itself would have cost $199 (actually $199.99 or $200)  right away and there would have been a $20/month increase due to the smartphone-line upgrade. There also would have been a 24 month payoff period and a one-time $40 upgrade charge.

 

So, when you do the math, the 2-year cost using the Next method would have been $29-ish/month for 24 months or about $696. That's the total cost for the line upgrade and the phone itself (not counting regular ongoing fees and taxes, of course).

 

And the pay-up-front-subsidized method would have been ($200 + $20-ish/month for 24 months + $40) or ($200 + $480 + $40) or about $720.

 

[Note - these are actual numbers taken right from the page(s) of the phone we're already enjoying and the contract(s) we already "signed"]

 

These costs (and cost differences) clearly show up on the phone page: LG G3 and different plans

 

Again, it's totally unclear where you got those wildly different costs up above but they for sure wouldn't have come from someone even as low in the ATT hierarchy as a first-level Customer Rep.

 

[addendum - had we bought the phone at full price the total 24 month cost would have been $700 (phone cost + $5/month for 24 months line increase)]

kdfederer

ACE - Expert

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12.7K Messages

8 years ago


@pmt1209 wrote:

Well honestly both show just how much i lost by not upgrading before switching our plan..

Upgrading before =$199

After=  $749 or $899...

Either way AT&T Store Rep's misinformation would have cost me either $550 or $700.. Key word being "would", instead its going to cost AT&T losing a customer with 5 smartphone lines in the very near future..


Had you upgraded prior to changing plans, you would not have been eligiible for the discount until your contract was completed. The discount is for out of contract lines. If you had upgraded, you would be under contract and still would pay the $40 per month for that line until that contract completed. Then you would get the discount. By switching plans, you are not automatically going to get the discount, if you had just upgraded your phones.

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