Can you buy 5C on contract then cancel and pay ETF?

Appl3FTW

macrumors 603
Original poster
Nov 15, 2012
5,392
1,024
Walmart is having a sale for $27... can we get one by opening a new account and just pay for the ETF?

is this possible?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,407
33,055
Boston
I believe you may be required to return the phone if you cancel the account within 30 days.

I think generally you need to pay one month, then cancel the account (and pay the ETF)
 

JackieInCo

Suspended
Jul 18, 2013
5,178
1,598
Colorado
I believe you may be required to return the phone if you cancel the account within 30 days.

I think generally you need to pay one month, then cancel the account (and pay the ETF)
Correct and if you don't return the phone, the carrier will bill you the full price of the phone, the ETF and the charges you owed for the month you used the phone.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,407
33,055
Boston
Would the above be cheaper than just buying the phone outright?
They've been imposing such tactics to prevent profiteering, so yeah it may be cheaper to buy it outright in most cases. I didn't run the numbers in iPhone 5c being 27 dollar case though
 

richardbb85

macrumors 6502a
Dec 9, 2009
653
22
u can't really find a way to take advantage of cell companies, you aren't the first and probably not the last.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
22,315
10,169
Gotta be in it to win it
They've been imposing such tactics to prevent profiteering, so yeah it may be cheaper to buy it outright in most cases. I didn't run the numbers in iPhone 5c being 27 dollar case though
Right to prevent exactly what the op is suggesting. The carriers want to make sure the cost of breaking the contract is more than the phone is worth.
 

frank33v

macrumors member
Feb 12, 2011
60
41
$27 device
$340 ETF
$115 30 days service
($100 month + $15 estimated taxes/fees )
--------------------
$482 Total


VERSUS

$550 Device
$45 Straight Talk
----------------------------
$595

So a savings of $112...taxes for the device are not figured because they could be a wash depending on if your state charges tax on $27 or the full value of the device. And I am unsure if there is an activation charge on the post paid carrier to activate the new device.

For some people the aggravation is worth $100. Am I missing something ?
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,088
4
Sol III - Terra
$27 device
$340 ETF
$115 30 days service
($100 month + $15 estimated taxes/fees )
--------------------
$482 Total


VERSUS

$550 Device
$45 Straight Talk
----------------------------
$595

So a savings of $112...taxes for the device are not figured because they could be a wash depending on if your state charges tax on $27 or the full value of the device. And I am unsure if there is an activation charge on the post paid carrier to activate the new device.

For some people the aggravation is worth $100. Am I missing something ?
The carrier will also probably charge for the phone.
 

nox5

macrumors 6502
Oct 16, 2013
413
48
You don't pay full price of the phone when you pay etf. I experienced many sales people tell me that because they either did not know or the tried to scare me and prevent cancelation. I never was charged full price when paying etf. Besides evrything is in your terms and conditions of your contract.
 

Truefan31

macrumors 68040
Aug 25, 2012
3,432
719
They do not charge full price AND the etf. The etf is there to cover the phone. Pay 27 for 5c, cancel next day or after 14 days, pay etf and 1st months bill. Done
 

Appl3FTW

macrumors 603
Original poster
Nov 15, 2012
5,392
1,024
Thanks Maflynn, but isn't the ETF all you need to cancel? can you not cancel the phone the next day and just pay for ETF?

They do not charge full price AND the etf. The etf is there to cover the phone. Pay 27 for 5c, cancel next day or after 14 days, pay etf and 1st months bill. Done
see that's what i was thinking.

so basically
27 (5c)
350 (ETF)
75 (on average 1st month)
----
$452 price of the 16gb 5C

VS

549+tax= $581.94 out the box

so you're saving $130 in the course of 1 month (granted you are obligated to own the phone for a month, if not better).

am i missing something here?

----------

pretty pricy for the 5c if u ask me, lol
shade :cool:

5c is a great device IMO. feels great to the hand, feels premium, i would rock it.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
22,315
10,169
Gotta be in it to win it
Thanks Maflynn, but isn't the ETF all you need to cancel? can you not cancel the phone the next day and just pay for ETF?



see that's what i was thinking.

so basically
27 (5c)
350 (ETF)
75 (on average 1st month)
----
$452 price of the 16gb 5C

VS

549+tax= $581.94 out the box

so you're saving $130 in the course of 1 month (granted you are obligated to own the phone for a month, if not better).

am i missing something here?

----------



shade :cool:

5c is a great device IMO. feels great to the hand, feels premium, i would rock it.
If the phone is verizon, they may not unlock it or release the phone. May be difficult to sell? (Asking a question)
 

corvus32

macrumors 6502a
Sep 4, 2009
761
0
USA
Thanks Maflynn, but isn't the ETF all you need to cancel? can you not cancel the phone the next day and just pay for ETF?



see that's what i was thinking.

so basically
27 (5c)
350 (ETF)
75 (on average 1st month)
----
$452 price of the 16gb 5C

VS

549+tax= $581.94 out the box

so you're saving $130 in the course of 1 month (granted you are obligated to own the phone for a month, if not better).

am i missing something here?
You may need to factor in the activation fee (~$30) they like to tack on.
 

corvus32

macrumors 6502a
Sep 4, 2009
761
0
USA
If the phone is verizon, they may not unlock it or release the phone. May be difficult to sell? (Asking a question)
If it's an iPhone 5 or newer, the SIM Card slot is factory unlocked as per the FCC.

It has to with some agreement made when Verizon purchased their LTE spectrum.

As for unlocking the CDMA portion, I'm not sure but so few networks outside the US and Japan are CDMA that I doubt most people in the world would care.
 

SchuettS

macrumors 6502
Dec 4, 2008
329
0
u can't really find a way to take advantage of cell companies, you aren't the first and probably not the last.
You can when walmart, bestbuy or whoever puts these phones on sale. Usually you will only save the different between the sale price and regular vs. paying full price.

I got a question. Say I went into walmart to get a 5s would they be able to add the phone to my share everything plan so I would only have to pay $40 for that month then cancel?

$40 additional share everything device
$137 for phone w tax
$340 etf
$30 activation fee
= $547 for a brand new verizon 5s

Thoughts or comments?
 
Last edited:

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