Verizon Ditches Contracts, Customers will Pay Full Price for Phones
Verizon is saying goodbye to contracts, but it's also saying goodbye to those smartphone subsidies mobile users have come to enjoy.
Starting Aug. 13 new Verizon customers will have new data plans from which to choose, but they'll have to pay retail for their new phone. The cost can be paid up front or broken up into interest-free installments over a two-year period.
Taking away the phone subsidy did drop down the price of the plans, but the cost of phone could potentially wash out any savings. Some customers could still see some savings under the new format, while others will pay more.
Verizon says that its new plans are an attempt to simply pricing options. "Customers said they don't want to have to do a lot of math to figure out their best options, and we heard them," Verizon's vice-president of consumer pricing Rob Miller said in a statement.
The plans will now come in the following sizes:
- Small: $30/month for 1GB of shareable data
- Medium: $45/month for 3GB of shareable data
- Large: $60/month for 6GB of shareable data
- X-Large: $80/month for 12GB of shareable data
Line-access charges are also changing. Each smartphone line is $20 per month, tablet and Jetpack lines are $10 per month, and connected device lines, like those for smart watches, are $5 a month.
While new customers know where they stand, the waters are a little murkier for current customers. Verizon says that current customers can keep their plans, with restrictions, though those restrictions haven't been clarified.
But, if you're due for an upgrade it's unclear if you'll still get that discounted price after Wednesday. As of Monday afternoon, the Associated Press was still waiting for comment from Verizon.