This is a follow up to our article titled “The Basics: Understanding Verizon’s Upgrade Policy.”
We get a lot of searches and questions from people trying to understand Verizon Wireless’ upgrade policies and discounts. Our Upgrade Policy article accounts for a lot of our traffic, but upon further review, we felt it might be prudent to follow up with an article explaining why discounting has changed over the years, and what it looks like today.
If you haven’t read the original upgrade article, please read it first.
And now… the fascinating world of Verizon Wireless subsidy.
Due to the lengthy nature of this article, we’re going to skip the smarmy intoduction and ask you to click on the MORE button. Thank you.
If you’ve followed our articles here at PhoneCan, you might see that we have a thing or two to say about contracts. In fact, some might say we’re talking about them too much, that we should be talking about important things, like iPhone rumors, telling you which carrier is best, and how to brew the perfect cup of coffee.. well, maybe not that last part.
The reason we spend so much time talking about Contracts is that it’s something that we hear about everyday. Customer want to upgrade, but they already used their upgrade and carriers are trying to “punish” them by making them pay “retail.” or a customer wants to know why the phone they bought just a few months ago is already obsolete.
We also believe that contracts are the single largest thing holding back true innovation and pro-consumer change from the US cellphone market. Carrier’s need to change, but before they do we as consumers need to show them that we’re ready for it.
What I’m talking about is our addiction to the term “Free.” We want Free phones, cheap (or free) services, Free accessories, and when we get what we want, we complain about something else.. We complain about only getting to buy a new phone every two years, or how when something breaks we get a used device, or how certain phones REQUIRE features we might not want, like unlimited data.
But nothing is ever free, not really. Sure, you might not pay anything up front for a phone, but you’re paying for the service to use that phone. You might even be paying for services you wouldn’t pay for otherwise to get the phone at that price (some retailers offer steeper discounts if you purchase on a higher value plan). Maybe your paying by giving up the ability to fully customize that phone, or accepting one jammed full of bloatware you can’t remove. Nothing is ever free, so why are carrier’s so quick to offer us “free” phones?