iPhone/ATT Contract and Upgrade Dillema

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by atrac7, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. atrac7 macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2010
    Hello all,

    My family and I are currently on a very old plan dating back from 2006. We have never used the data plans with iphones, but have always went the unlock route and have gotten by with Wifi (with iphone and other various smart phones)

    At the end of this month (august), our contract is to expire. ATT no longer will let us keep our original dated plan. Obviously we are due and eligible for an upgrade at that point. The catch is we'd very much like to land the iPhone 5 and this time go the data plan route.

    We all need our phones, and preferably, the numbers we have right now. What is the best route to go in this scenario to "wait it out" during the month of September when (hopefully) the iPhone 5 gets released? Do we go the pay as you go route temporarily until so? And does that mean we would be assigned different numbers? Would ATT be lenient possibly and let us "renew" our contract, yet let us wait it out a bit until we can decide to upgrade (and in the meantime, use our current phones)?

    I know i am asking a lot of questions here, but any pertinent response would be much appreciated. Thanks folks
  2. saving107 macrumors 603


    Oct 14, 2007
    San Jose, Ca
    Are you presuming or have you been told?
  3. forcetactic macrumors 6502

    Jul 30, 2010
    Just because you're off contract doesn't mean you need to renew it. You will pay month by month on their current plans contractless (since you said they won't let you keep your old plans) and you can sign up for a contract to get subsidized i5 price when it's released.
  4. tlbwriter macrumors regular

    Nov 21, 2008
    I don't understand... when my plan was no longer available, AT&T didn't make me change it until I was ready to upgrade. Are you saying that they're going to force you to choose a new plan, AND a phone, when your contract expires?
  5. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
  6. atrac7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2010

    Yes, we are the old blue customers. Forgot to mention that.

    Does that mean I have no way of getting the IP5 at the subsidized price? As in, I am FORCED to get a new ORANGE sim, and thus, activate the plan as soon as they cancel the blue plan?

    From what I understand..once I renew the contract I am forced to choose a subsidized phone then instead of renewing and "waiting it out", correct?

    I have no problem getting a new orange plan...I just wish I could lock in the Iphone 5 so I don't have upgrade woes.

    I guess worst case scenario is I just let ATT cancel my plan, and wait it out, phoneless (at least with the current number) until IP5 comes out, and then I choose to renew to a new contract..
  7. greytmom macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2010
    Have you tried talking to someone at AT&T?

    Worse case scenario - you get kicked to the curb, buy a cheap pre-paid to use for a few weeks, then get the iPhone 5 and a new contract when it becomes available.
  8. atrac7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2010
    No, I haven't spoken to them yet simply because I wanted to gather input before getting the run-around from them

    I suppose I can go the pre-paid route. The downside is not having the current number we have for that time being. A petty problem of course, but still, something to consider...
  9. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    Sorry for semi-thread jacking, but are you saying that people who have these SIMs will need to buy a new phone?


    What the heck? I have a blackberry and iPhone with these SIMS and I'm pretty sure they are still "compatible" with AT&T's network or whatever BS they are claiming.

    We have a 1000 minute plan that they never made us switch ...

    So I need to switch to 1400 minutes?
  10. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    OP, please read the howard forums link I posted on my previous post about what "old ATT blue" customers should do prior to the shutdown.

    It's getting late in the game since they will shutdown "blue original ATT customer's SIMs" in a couple of weeks.

    What many people who chose to stay on with the "new ATT" is this:
    Call ATT CS. Have them give you "free" "new" ATT cheap phones.

    Make sure you clearly have them note in your account that these cheap new ATT phones and SIM cards with the new plans DO NOT affect your eligibility for a full subsidy upgrade.

    Most people have been able to get this done.

    This way, you get a compatible SIM with a new plan without having your upgrade messed up for the new iphone 5.

    PLEASE DO this AFTER you receive the new cheap phones with the NEW ATT SIM cards.

    Call ATT CS after you receive these cheap phones. Verify all your lines are still eligible for an upgrade.

    Always follow up.

    Just read the link I posted what people have done.
  11. atrac7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2010
    Unless you have gotten letters and texts from ATT, i think you are fine otherwise. I mainly think you are alright because your SIM is still a 3G labeled one. Mine was before even the days of 3G (i know, i am old school and not up with the times)
  12. atrac7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 14, 2010
    Thanks friend. I will look into all of this. Now, what if this time around, i DO want data on the iPhone 5?

    Do i, in this case:

    Call CS

    State that I would like to get it on the new cheap phones they are offering for free, ask for the data plan (15 dollar a month one per each phone)+ texts, and use those with the "cheap" phone.

    Insist that these phones do not count as my upgrade

    Keep using said phone with new plan with the data+text until iPhone 5 comes out

    Upgrade to iPhone 5.

    I am a bit confused on when i should say "these cheap phones do not count as my upgrade"....do I tell them that AFTER they send me the phones or before? It seems that telling them before is the likely choice, but you said do this AFTER. What I worry about this is if i tell them this after, what if they screw me and say "no you should have specified that before, you already got the phones now, this is your upgrade you used up"

    Thanks once again for your informative responses
  13. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    What the OP is talking about is the "new ATT" is shutting down the remaining "old" ATT wireless customers's SIM card.

    These "old ATT wireless customers" have been out of contract for at least the past 5 years. They chose to remain out of contract and bull phones at full price/ebay/craiglist because they did not want to lose their grandfathered "old att wireless plans"

    Cingular (joint venture with Bell South/SBC) purchased "old att wireless back in 2004".

    SBC brought the original ATT company. SBC brought out Bell South. SBC decided to change with name to the "new att around 2007".

    So those "old ATT wireless customers" plans are finally being phased out after all these years. Customers must choose to upgrade to newer plans or leave (since they are out of contract anyways).

    This will likely happens to Tmobile USA customers if the "new ATT" gets to buy them out. Eventually these Tmobile USA customers will be forced to upgrade to a compatible plans and lose their Tmobile USA plans. It will probably take 3-5 years or whenever those customers choose to buy subsidized phones.
  14. antman2295 macrumors 6502

    Nov 30, 2010
    Wirelessly posted (Opera/9.80 (iPhone; Opera Mini/6.1.15738/25.729; U; en) Presto/2.5.25 Version/10.54)

    My suggeation is to go to your local att store and NICELY tell them your problem and see what they can do for you. If you can get a manager that would be your best shot to either have them renew your plan while allowing you to upgrade when you want or let you keep your current plan till september. Ivr had many issues and went to our local att store, and told them my problem, and the kindy helped me with my issues. Good luck though!!!
  15. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    I've never received any texts or mails so I guess I'm fine.

    Okay, I see.
    We joined when it was "Cingular" and you are talking about customers before it was Cingular (right?). But we've bought new phones and signed a contract under the "AT&T" branding so I guess we're fine.
  16. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    Just call ATT CS. Tell them your situation. They should know how to work with "blue" customers.

    Those guys over on howardforums.com are some of the worse complainers (like some are here on macrumors). They are pissed their "blue" accounts are expiring and are trying to demand a king's ransom to convert to "orange" accounts. Meaning they want the same minutes/plans as their old "blue" account for the same price. Life sucks for them but hey it's been more than 5-6 years since the buyout took place. The "new" ATT didn't promise they could continue on forever with their old blue plans.

    You seem to be very reasonable. They will work with you. Have them note your account for a new phone. Can be any cheap phones. If they don't give you a cheap phone, just have them send you a new compatible SIM card and have them note you aren't going to use your upgrade.

    It's important to have a follow up phone the next day to double check the last CS agent documented. I am very anal about calls to CS. I always double check.
  17. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    You are an "orange" customer. You are with the original Cingular wireless.

    You will continue to be grandfathered because the "orange" Cingular wireless bought out the old "blue ATT wireless".

    It's only the old "blue original ATT wireless customers" who are finally being forced to either change to "orange" current plans or leave the carrier.
  18. brianbunge macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2011
    Kennesaw, GA
    I actually work in an AT&T retail store. You can change your rate plan at any time without extending/renewing your contract. The only time you sign a new contract is when you get a new phone, assuming you do not want to pay full retail price for the phone.

    So all you should do right now is change your rate plan. Then whenever the iPhone 5 is announced use your upgrades then to get the new phones with a new 2 year contract.
  19. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007

    Yes, "orange customers" like him/her do not need to change their voice plan.

    However, the OP with the contract dilemma is a "blue customer" and will be forced to change to new plan by the end of the month or their SIM gets deactivated.
  20. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    Alright, thanks for clearing that up!

    I don't necessarily want to change from my 1000 minute family plan if I am not required to.
  21. brianbunge macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2011
    Kennesaw, GA
    How much are you paying for the base plan and how much is each additional line? A lot of the older rate plans (4+ years old) are basically "ghosts" in the system and any change on your account (phone change, sim change, adding features, etc) will force the rate plan change. However, this change does not extend your contract. Only accepting a phone at the discounted price will do that. These "ghost" plans once removed cannot be retrieved by anyone as they do not truly exist in the billing system except in some deep programming.

    Many times customers who elect to change actually will fair better with the current plans and promotions (like the unlimited text that includes unlimited calling to all wireless customers...not just ATT customers, but ALL). You might actually save money in the long run.
  22. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    $69 + $10/line.

    I know the change doesn't extend my contract. And I've changed my data and texting plans a few time and nothing happened to my 1000 family minutes plan so I think I'm fine. I also haven't received any messages from AT&T to change my plan.
  23. brianbunge macrumors 6502


    Aug 11, 2011
    Kennesaw, GA
    So what makes you think you have to change your calling plan? Also, do you have unlimited family messaging? If so, there's a new version of that texting plan that also gives you unlimited calling to any mobile phone in the U.S. (AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, etc.). The only catch is that you have to have a current calling plan with 700 minutes or more.

    So if you do have unlimited family messaging, you can actually save $10/mo by switching to a 700 minute plan and change to family messaging with unlimited mobile to any mobile.
  24. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    I thought I had to switch because it was one of the older plans, but thanks for letting me know about the 700 min + unlimited mobile to any mobile. I didn't think of that before. It looks like I'll be better off with that. I'll switch the next billing cycle.

    are you sure unlimited mobile to any mobile works for family plans?
  25. dave006 Contributor


    Jul 3, 2008
    Just West of East
    First with AT&T there are two (2) types of Free phones that are currently being discussed.

    1. Free basic feature phone for migrating customers ( somewhat limited set of devices ) You get a new AT&T SIM and a very basic phone without starting a new AT&T contract on a current AT&T rate plan without a contract. You only pay for the new monthly service + taxes + fees.

    2. Free phone that requires a new 2 year contract! ( Note: this is not really a Free phone but a sales gimmic... :eek: )

    You are interested in option 1 only, the Free phone that does not require a new contract! Since you are currently out of contract, I would suggest you want to stay that way until the next iPhone is available.

    There is no need to get a data plan now unless you are able to make use of it with your "Free" phones until you upgrade to the new iPhone. You will always have the option to add a valid iPhone data plan when you upgrade to the new iPhone.

    As long as you don't have a contract, then when the new iPhone is available, you will qualify for the best pricing ( aka full discount pricing ) on the iPhone. Again only accept the discounted pricing if you understand that you will be starting a new 2 year contract with AT&T to get that discounted iPhone pricing.

    Note: In addition to calling Customer Care, you also have the option to go to a Corporate Retail location and complete your transactions in person. Just use the same caution about what a free phone is or is not and make sure that it does not include a contract until you get to the iPhone. :D


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