Would you pay more for your device in exchange for lower monthly rates?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Walter Bell, May 2, 2012.

  1. Walter Bell, May 2, 2012
    Last edited: May 2, 2012

    Walter Bell macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2010
    Currently I'm with AT&T with no contract as it has ended. I'm probably going to pick up the HTC One X, but is rather pay the $550 out right price them sign another two year contract. Same goes for th iPhone 5 when it comes out. But what incentive do I have to use the upgrade feature on my account? Is it even worth saving it as I get no reduction in my monthly service now that my 2 year contract is up.

    How many of you would prefer googles method of distributing devices? Pay $400 for unlocked no contract phone from the manufacture in exchange for lower monthly costs for our bill?

    How can wireless carriers assert that phone plans are expensive due to the subsidized price of the phone, but don't drop the plan price after you have completed 2 years of service to make up that cost?
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    When I bought my iPhone 4S I made a big spreadsheet of all the options in the UK, contract as well as PAYG. Cheapest option over 1 or 2 years was to buy the phone outright and go on GiffGaff. Both cheapest per month, cheapest after 1 year and cheapest after 2 years.
  3. bad03xtreme macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2009
    Northern, VA
    Because they know people will sign up again and pay it...

    I have been out of contract for over two years on Verizon, they have thrown $50 at me here and there towards new phones but I know that means nothing to them. But in reality what do I gain by not signing a new contract and getting a new phone, I am not going anywhere?

    Most carriers are raping the consumer so it's deciding wether or not it's worth it to leave to save $5-10/month but then you have to pay a $35 activation fee somewhere else. Sucks doesn't it.
  4. Walter Bell thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2010
    We dont have these options here in the states. I would much rather do your method than the current US way.
  5. ericrwalker macrumors 68030


    Oct 8, 2008
    Albany, NY
    I made that point with a board chairman at AT&T when I was trying to convince them to unlock my iPhones for foreign travel. He pointed out that they subsidize the phone cost so they won't unlock, and the only way to unlock is cancel with AT&T and pay the ETF.

    I wanted to stay a AT&T customer and think it's stupid to pay an ETF to stay a customer.

    He said if he had it his way all customers would pay full cost of the phone. It was then I explained I agreed with paying full cost of the phone, but then we should be paying less for service. The way I figure, it should be about $15 less per month if I pay the full phone cost up front. I am sure he saw my point, and they won't unlock my phone because of people like this : http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1365753 who actually cost AT&T money.

    Fortunately there is a pay service ($120, which is cheaper than ETF fee).
  6. nuckinfutz macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2002
    Middle Earth
    Because they're full of ***** (the carriers)

    Must like any company they attempt to tell you that high prices of their product are caused by warehousing or distribution (Movie, Music) yet when digital downloads erase that they still want to charge the same money.

    The carriers are lying about the cost of monthly plans. They aren't more expensive because of subsidy because as you state there would be a discount for non contract phones.

    They are loath to reduce monthly revenue and they are loath to pay iPhone like subsidy

    They basically want to screw you either way.
  7. Diode macrumors 68020


    Apr 15, 2004
    Washington DC
    If you can live with 7.2mbit HSPA and a 2GB monthly data cap look into Straight Talk.
  8. Walter Bell thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2010
    I have unlimited data and I use 5-10 GB a month of data. I barely use any minutes as most of my calling is done between other AT&T customers. I have looked into straight talk, but I'm not letting go of unlimited data until AT&T forces me to.


    Can you add a poll to an already created topic?
  9. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    North American large carriers (I mean both Canada and USA) have a complete stranglehold on post paid plans. They have been the most profitable.

    However especially in the USA. The iPhone subsidy (for family plans)is starting to erode carrier profits.

    People who have one or two lines are better off paying full price and going to prepaid plans.

    However those who have 4-5 lines. Family plans are cost savings and post paid data makes sense.

    So carriers in the USA have no clue what to do. They promoted family plans for so long. It's coming back to hunt them.

    It's kinda of funny that lines 2-5 have same subsidy as line 1. But the carriers who created this game. Now they have their profits eroded.

    Which carrier blinks first to lower the iPhone subsidy? No one wants to make that decision. Verizon won't blink. AT&T won't. Sprint can't.

    Apple has the carriers by the balls.
  10. cyks macrumors 68020


    Jul 24, 2002
    Westchester County, NY
    The carriers charge that way because people let them. There are plenty of people who would gladly pay the full price of the phone just so they don't have to sign a contract... even though they're paying the same exact amount per month on their plan and are spending a great deal more over the 2 years.

    Anyone who stays with one of the big 3 and doesn't upgrade the day they're eligible is spending more than they should and are letting the carriers rip them off.
  11. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    You mentioned it yourself. There's no discount for not using a subsidy. If you want a discount from the carrier then the subsidy is it.

    Worth is always subjective. I'd say no. No one can tell you if it's worth "saving" or not.

    Where does the lower monthly cost come from? All Google does is offer the unsubsidized device. Not sure where you're getting the latter half from. Google isn't providing discounted service.

    What alternative are you going to use? That's how they can. It really doesn't matter what they say or don't say as justification. You're stuck no matter what.
  12. LSUtigers03 macrumors 68020


    Apr 9, 2008
    I've seen the plans worded two different ways.

    $45 for 30 Days of Unlimited Talk, Text, Data & 411.

    $45 per month – Unlimited Data, Talk & Text

    Now seeing that I would have assumed that it was unlimited everything since it doesn't list anything other than unlimited. Then you said 2gb of data. Do you know if it's unlimited everything and if not where can I find what I would get? I'm not seeing it on their site.
  13. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA
    If my bill was cut in half, I would be happy to pay outright for my devices.
  14. NMF macrumors 6502a


    Oct 27, 2011
    ...this is why you upgrade every single chance you can. If you don't your just giving away money to the carrier.
  15. Diode macrumors 68020


    Apr 15, 2004
    Washington DC
    Like every "unlimited" plan there are catches - for Straight Talk it's how they define data.

    If you read the terms they define it as unlimited mobile web - and they technically prohibit "uploading, downloading or streaming of audio or video programming or games".

    While they won't specify at what portion they will cut you off if you do stream - the general consensus on Howard Forums is 2GB. Since the plans are monthly - if you do get cut off the data portion will return when you re-charge your account with a new 30 day card.

    I would blame AT&T for this - as Straight Talk doesn't seem to have this limitation if you choose their T-Mobile SIM.
  16. LSUtigers03 macrumors 68020


    Apr 9, 2008
    Thanks for the info. So if I understand correctly I can stream videos and audio but if i go over 2GB I'm likely to have my data cut off for the rest of the month? If so that's not a big deal I rarely use that much anyway.
  17. Diode macrumors 68020


    Apr 15, 2004
    Washington DC
    That's correct.
  18. Spectrum Abuser macrumors 65816

    Spectrum Abuser

    Aug 27, 2011
    In all fairness the phone subsidization is what made the modern cellphone possible. If the carriers had not bit the bullet and started offering the phones cheaper upfront while binding you into a commitment the wireless boom would of happened much later.

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