One thing to note about $399 price

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by TimothyB, Jul 7, 2008.

  1. TimothyB macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2008
    I assumed this, but finally confirmed it from an ATT e-mail. Even at the $399-$499 price for the 3G iPhone, your upgrade eligibility will start over.

    This means if you thought that after paying full price you'd at least be eligible in time for next year's 3rd Gen iPhone, you won't be anymore, you'd end up paying $399 again unless you wait the 20 something months all over.

    That's what I figured. I'd pay full price now and I thought I'd be eligible next year for a new iPhone at $199, so I'd get the same deal in the end as the first gen iPhone owners, paying $399 then a year later, $199. But that's not the case anymore. But now they call the regular price from the 1st gen iPhone as an early upgrade!

    A snip-it from the ATT e-mail:
    however we are offering
    early upgrades with the Iphone at $399/$499 and with either cost it will
    require a 2 year agreement and since the devices are discounted this
    would reset the upgrade eligibility. If you purchase the device at the
    $399/499 cost you will no longer be eligible to upgrade on 11/08/08.

    They are really giving us existing customers no break. People who bought the first iPhone for the same price at $399-$499, or even off craigslist, did not have their eligibility reset after activating it. And now they get a instant eligibility even if they got a subsidized phone right before the iPhone, which they can sell and make things even cheaper. Yes, I know, you snooze you lose.

    Why then do they still have this on ATT's iPhone FAQ:
    Q. Do I lose my discount eligibility on phones or devices other than iPhone?
    A. No. Although existing customers are required to sign a new 2-year service contract when activating iPhone, the discount eligibility for other devices will continue from the time of your current contract. For example, if you are eligible for an upgrade discount next month, you will still be eligible for the upgrade discount on a device other than iPhone next month.

    At least if they are going to charge $200 more for an early ugprade, why isn't it $175 more, the same as ETF. Why are they trying to recover more than you owe on your existing contract, plus $18 upgrade fee, and reset your eligibility. Even more annoying that the pro-rate they started a few months ago, where it's $5 less a month, wasn't retro active for existing customers, another blow. So someone that's 18 months away from upgrade gets the same $399 price as someone 4 months away, and of course the person 4 months away is going to think it's unfair when their eligibility is reset when the other person hardly paid off their subsidy.

    Reason I say this, if you are 2 to 4 months away from eligibility, and were planning to early upgrade $399 with the thought you'd be eligible for the next iPhone, think again. It's treated like a full subsidized price, your eligibility will start over for another 20 something months.

    NOTE: If all you have to respond with is "stop whining" or "just don't buy the iPhone", please save us the time and not bump a thread you don't seem to care about anyway. I do have a bit of complaining in my post, but I still think some people might not have suspected this issue with the $399 price fully resetting upgrade eligibility when it did not a the same price as the first gen iPhone
  2. greenmymac macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2007
    Tulsa, Ok

    Stop whining just dont buy the iphone ;):D
  3. sr5878 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2007
    my advice:

    find a friend (anyone) with a 1st gen iphone, and ask them to borrow it for 10 minutes. pop their sim card out, and put yours in. connect to itunes and activate the phone under your name. put their sim card back in the iphone, put yours back into your current phone (will still work) and take them out to a nice lunch.

    doing this will NOT affect their account, contract, upgrade eligibility, etc.

    this way you will now show as an iphone user in at&t's system. you will be eligible for the $199 pricing on friday.
  4. thevol macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2008
    you fulfill your subsidy on your current phone by paying the higher price, then eligibilty rules start over. why is this hard to understand, stop whining ;)
  5. TimothyB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2008
    I don't have any friends with the iPhone, besides someone I know at work, so it wouldn't be practical to put her through the trouble unless I knew exactly how it would go down.

    I have a 3G sim card in my current phone. If I installed iTunes at work. Then she backs up her iPhone at home, brings the sync cable to work.
    Would I then:

    1: Put in my sim card, connect it to my work computer, activate the iPhone plan my account.

    2: Or do I have to restore the iPhone to it's original state first?

    3: Then after, would she only have to put her sim card back, then at home restore the back up from her iTunes? No more resetting the iPhone or having her activate it again herself?
  6. Le Big Mac macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    The way they're doing it seems fair. What's making it seem unfair is the outrageous unsubsidized price of the iPhone which is really $599/$699. That's the only one that comes with no strings attached. The $399/$499 price is merely a "favor" to customers who aren't yet eligible for upgrades but want the new one now.

    The bottom line is that Apple has bought into AT&T's (and all cell cos.) shoddy marketing of fictitious prices for devices.
  7. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2007
    Bristol, England
    it's only a month, and you already have an iphone, can't you just wait?
  8. sr5878 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2007
    the process:

    1: Ask her to bring her iPhone and USB cable with her to work

    2: Install iTunes on your computer and get an iTunes account (CC# required)

    3: Eject the SIM with a paperclip and replace her SIM with yours.

    4: Plug into computer, launch iTunes, follow on-screen instructions

    5: Activate iPhone

    6: Remove your SIM card, place her SIM card back into the phone

    You are now upgrade eligible!

    I am 100% sure that re-activating the phone does not wipe any data unless you tell it to. She will have an automatic backup on her home computer in the event that something happens, but nothing will happen to her activation (It's the SIM that activates, not the phone) or her plan or anything.
  9. TimothyB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2008
    I understand :) That's why I thought to ask ATT in the first place when I saw that term they are now coining "Early upgrade." I held hope because the $399-$499 was the same price as the first non-subsidized iPhone, which did not start over eligibility as quoted from their FAQ that's still online.

    Now for some whining:
    Why did they take that away from us loyal existing customers!. Why why why why why why why why why why why....... :)
  10. TimothyB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2008
    Huh, what's only a month? I never said I have an iPhone. November is 4 months away. Are you saying if I took the $399 price, what then is only a month?
  11. TimothyB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2008
    Thanks, I'll pursue this when I get into work tomorrow. I just hope the facts haven't been skewed by people reporting after they lent their iPhone to someone else that their eligibility stayed the same when they didn't have a subsidized phone before or were ready for an upgrade regardless of the iPhone's status change.
  12. yetanotherdave macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2007
    Bristol, England
    November? Duh, I can never read American dates, 11/8/08 is 11th August to me.

    Sorry, I think I misread your post, it sounded like you had an iPhone and wanted to upgrade now, rather than buying now and thinking ahead to next years model.
  13. sr5878 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2007
    I sold my iPhone, and I still show as completely eligible for the $199 iPhone price. AT&T doesn't care if you have the phone, all you need is an iPhone plan on your account before July 11th.
  14. thevol macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2008

    techically this should work, but nobody really knows what is going to happen until july 11. i would hate to mess up someone else's eligibilty, but i seriously doubt that would happen unless they had a way to track imei.
  15. And5555 macrumors member

    Jun 16, 2008
    They do track IMEI numbers. The iTunes activation process hides this from you, but you do actually submit the IMEI number when you activate. In fact, when you activate a non-iPhone device over the phone, you have to give them your IMEI number of the phone so that they can enable the device on their network.
  16. dave006 Contributor


    Jul 3, 2008
    Just West of East
    No they don't really track the IMEI. The system will see the current IMEI that the SIM is installed in, when you put your SIM in another phone, the IMEI of that phone will be transmitted whenever the phone registers to the network.:)

    I wish they tracked the IMEI, then they could help customers with lost or stolen iPhones by blacklisting those IMIE numbers so at least they could not be used again for service. There are just too many problems with this so they don't bother.
  17. jmpmntwnty3 macrumors 6502

    Sep 15, 2007
    South Carolina
    I've never given out an IMEI number when I've activated a new phone over the phone. I'd just pop my new SIM in and move on. If I got a new SIM, I'd give them the number on the back of the SIM so they could activate that. But that's it...
  18. marksman macrumors 603


    Jun 4, 2007
    Can you explain how you are in a position to provide that disclaimer?
  19. sr5878 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 5, 2007
    because i sold my iphone and i'm still on an iphone plan with at&t and fully eligible for a $199 iphone 3g?

Share This Page