AT&T getting Verizon customers--what and when to buy!?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by iamvexed, Jul 9, 2010.

  1. iamvexed macrumors member

    May 27, 2008
    Hi all,

    First, some background...

    I'm moderately happy with my BlackBerry, but want an iPhone. I'm on Verizon (that's where my wife wanted to be...), so no iPhone for me right now.

    I went online to see about upgrading to a Droid Incredible or Droid X, and got this link.

    It seems that when Verizon took over Alltel, they agreed to give AT&T some "rural" customers so as not to approximate a monopoly. I'm in that group.

    That webpage constitutes the ENTIRETY of information I have about this, even after calling Verizon ("AT&T will have to provide you that information") and AT&T ("More information will be available soon"). Mind you that they're rolling this project out over the next year or so.

    Now, for the questions.

    First and foremost, do I even think about upgrading to a Droid phone at this point? Especially one from Verizon?

    Second and far less important (and pretty wildly speculative), could this be what those reports of CDMA iPhones are about? For the Verizon-but-soon-to-be-AT&T customers who want an iPhone? (It's not clear to me whether AT&T is getting just the customers, or is taking over Verizon's hardware in the area as well.)

    I don't want to wait a year to upgrade, though if it means I get an iPhone 4, I suppose it could be worth it.

  2. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    This makes no sense as Verizon will still be in business can you cancel once you are switched to AT&T and become a Verizon customer? Will there be any compensation for you to get a new phone without having to sign a new two year agreement (since CDMA will not work anymore and you already bought phones that will be useless)? Will you get to keep your unlimited internet if you have it already?

    I would be calling and asking these questions. Especially on the phone part. It seems reasonable you should be refunded the cost of the phones. To apply toward the AT&T phones and the AT&T agreement for the new phones should only require you maintain service for the remainder of your Verizon agreement.
  3. DakotaGuy macrumors 68040


    Jan 14, 2002
    South Dakota, USA
    I live an an area like you do and since the deal between AT&T and Verizon has just been approved it is going to be quite sometime until AT&T has all of the Alltel towers upgraded to be able to handle the iPhone. I would say at least a year to 18 months. It also remains to be seen if AT&T will switch over all of the towers or just the ones near larger urban areas or major highways.

    I was with Alltel, but switched over to Verizon for the original Droid last winter. There are just too many lingering questions about the changeover. I am going to let others go through the transition and see how it goes for them.

    In my opinion, I would stay with Verizon if you are in an area like I am and enjoy a new Droid X (or whatever you choose) until the whole transition to AT&T is complete. By the time your contract is up in two years we will know if AT&T is really committed to these rural areas or if they were just making a play to keep other companies out.
  4. Eric S. macrumors 68040

    Eric S.

    Feb 1, 2008
    Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    That's sucks. I'd be pretty darn upset if Verizon forced me onto AT&T. But if you're going to still be on Verizon for any length of time, I'd go ahead and get a Droid flavor. Every month there are new and more exciting Android phones coming out, so by the time you're forced off of Verizon whatever you get now will be behind the curve in any case.
  5. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    If Verizon will let you upgrade, I would definitely go ahead and do it. Bear in mind though, that the phone you get from Verizon ultimately won't work on AT&T. So, AT&T will have to give you some way to swap your existing phone for a comparable phone when the transition happens.

    Being that the Droid is THE flagship smartphone line for Verizon, AT&T would be hard-pressed to not trade like-for-like. Gee, I wonder what AT&T's flagship phone is presently?

    Then again, Verizon might not let you upgrade at all. If they're selling you off to AT&T, then to them it's throwing good money after bad to subsidize a new phone to you, since they won't get it back.

    The CDMA iPhone 4 rumors are just that, rumors. People are doubting Apple would make a second run of iPhones just to accommodate Verizon. Even less likely would they make an even smaller batch just for some rural AT&T CDMA customers.

    No, AT&T is highly unlikely to support CDMA any longer than it would have to.
    I would expect them to get everyone transitioned over to GSM/UMTS as quickly as possible, and that more than likely means swapping out your phones, too.

    AT&T is definitely getting the spectrum licenses and probably the towers (and leases for leased sites) in your area, in addition to the customers. But chances are, they'll gradually phase in their own GSM/UMTS gear and decommission the CDMA stuff as soon as practical.

    The good news is, this means the coverage you get out of Verizon now is likely the coverage you'll get out of AT&T. CDMA has always required greater cell density than GSM, and the 3G characteristics aren't so different between the two. So AT&T would have to work REALLY hard to make the coverage there any worse than it is, once the transition is complete.

    Like I said, if Verizon will let you upgrade now, then upgrade now. You may have to fight them on this, but the way I see it, you shouldn't be forced to wait a year for this transition to take place. YOU didn't decide to jump ship; Verizon just used you as a pawn to appease the FCC while they went off and bought Alltel, cherry-picking their customers along the way. And once it does happen, it's AT&T's problem as to what they're gonna do to swap out your Droid with a comparable model on their network.
  6. swoosh911 macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2010

    just remember that if you get the droid and sign a 2 year contract and then 2 months later you are forced to switch to ATT (supposedly you will get a comparable phone at no cost) and you decide you hate ATT, then you will either have to wait out the contract or you will have to pay the termination fee. in order to switch back to verizon or another company. I am in same spot you are so I am hanging on to my storm until att makes switch. then I will decide from there (my contract runs out in 6 months)
  7. iamvexed thread starter macrumors member

    May 27, 2008
    Hi All,

    So I FINALLY got someone at Verizon to give me more details about how things are going to work with the transition.

    Within 30-60 days I'll be getting a letter informing me of the switch. Once I get the letter, I have 30 days to decide to allow the switch or terminate the contract without penalty. If I terminate the contract, then I'll be free to do as I see fit, including returning to Verizon, at which point I'd be a new customer.

    I guess this means that in 30-60 days, I'll be giving AT&T a call to see what they can offer me...

    Thanks for all the input!
  8. BiggAW macrumors 68030

    Jun 19, 2010
    Check out Howardforums for more info on the cell side- but I think those are areas where Verizon already had an 850mhz network, and then owned too much spectrum, so they have to sell half off to AT&T and keep using the other half- but I could be wrong.

    Even if Verizon doesn't have 850mhz in that area anymore, they will surely continue on with 1900mhz, although that would wipe out the "Verizon advantage". Verizon isn't going to go without coverage in an area.

    The DROID X is the top phone in the US right now, I am envious as an AT&T sub. The best phone we can get is the Captivate. :(
  9. lesleyhoenig macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2010
    ATT v Verzion v Alltel debacle

    No one has posted on this in a while, but it seems a lot of info needs to be corrected.

    First, I received my stupid letter a couple weeks ago. I called att as they finally have a contact number to call. They said I cannot cancel until after I already have the phone. Their letter clearly states they will charge a $35 restocking fee if you cancel. But you do get 30 days to cancel once you get the phone.

    2nd - even though ATT has a better android phone (the samsung captivate) the best phone they will consider an equivalent phone (whether you have the original droid, or the droid x) is the HTC Aria. How does that even compare? Its screen is TINY.

    As far as canceling now, ATT said I'd have to talk to Verizon, well verizon won't let you out of the early termination fee even though it would mean they get to keep their customer, because honestly I'd just stay with verizon. I've been with them 9 years, I don't want to switch, and I left ATT because it sucked to begin with. I think I'll be finding myself at an att store this weekend to investigate this a bit further to see if there's a way to just "order the phone" at the store and immediately cancel and avoid the stupid $35 restocking fee. I've also considered switching to Alltel, because alltel customers here will be going to verizon, and they recently had a deal where they were offering a $100 credit which would pay for much of my ETF.

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