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ATT releases iPhone Data plan details. SMS $5 extra. etc etc

by aplardi / July 1, 2008 3:07 AM PDT

I'm in internal debate over getting the new iPhone. Now that everything is done in the ATT stores it's lead to a lot of confusion. Any ATT store you go to will answer you differently about if you qualify for the upgrade, how much you'll be paying, what's included and etc.

This is directly from ATT's site.
http://www.wireless.att.com/cell-phone-service/specials/iphone-info.jsp

In comparison to what the previous iPhone plan offered you're paying $10 dollars extra a month for th data, and $5 for the 200 text messages. You will have to pay an $18 dollar upgrade fee, and the new iPhone does not include a dock. According to two ATT phone reps I spoke with, and one store manager, if you area does not have any 3G you still have to pay the same data plan price, it doesn't revert to the last iPhone plan.

Interestingly they have announced the upgrade, early upgrade, and non commitment prices:

If you are upgrade eligible and your account is in good standing, you will pay $199 for 8GB (black) and $299 for 16GB (black or white). Two-year contract required.

You have the option to purchase an early upgrade priced at $399 for 8GB (black) or $499 for 16GB (black or white). Two-year contract required. Coming soon, AT&T will offer a no-commitment option of $599 for 8GB and $699 for 16GB.


----

One "work around" would be to buy as a new customer if you pass the credit check, pay the 200+tax. Then cancel immediately, keep the phone, and pay the $175 fee. Not a horrible idea.

I'm kinda let down about all this to be honest though, sure it's just $15 more a month but the entire thing feels way more convoluted and less simple than the old way of buying and activating at home. It ends up being $360 more than the old plan for two years of service, plus taxes and fees of course.

Anyone else feel let down? Annoyed? Fine? Or is it really no big deal.

I was told I am not eligible for an upgrade and that it didn't matter if I gave my iPhone to a family member or sold it, if it was put on another persons account I have to pay the $400. Boo.

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meh
by z3ro1 / July 1, 2008 3:24 AM PDT

The iPhone will be cheaper for me because I have a Samsung Blackjack and unlimited data for $39.99 and 200 texts for $5.00.

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that works
by aplardi / July 1, 2008 3:27 AM PDT
In reply to: meh

That goes with the other line of thought that iPhone users are spoiled. iPhone was my first cell phone and I never dealt with any other company or plans.

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I don't get why everyone is so upset about the data.

You pay more than EDGE data but you are getting faster data. This is industry standard. Cable cost more than DSL and DSL costs more than dial-up. Pretty much every other carrier charges more for their 3-g plans than their EDGE or WAP plans. I fail to see why this is so shocking or unexpected. At least we don't have data caps (that we know of) like Verizon and Sprint put on their 3g data plans.

SMS's are a scam however. There is no way something so small should cost so much. But this is true on just about all carriers. It almost smells like collusion to me.

I could care less about the dock not being included. Same thing happened when the iPod moved into the mainstream and out of the luxury category (my 30GB 3rd Gen iPhone came with a carrying care a dock and a power adapter. It also cost 500 bucks. Mainstream pricing means margins have to get smaller and included accessories is the first thing to go.

I'm not sure I'm upgrading though. I'll let my friends be the guinea pigs. If the real GPS and the faster data prove to be absolute must haves I don't mind paying an extra 15 a month. Otherwise I am perfectly happy to stick with my existing iPhone and wait till the bigger capacities iPhone start coming out next summer.

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you're right on all but one accounts...
by aplardi / July 1, 2008 3:43 AM PDT

you're paying the higher price EVEN if 3G isn't available in your area. Say you live in NJ? You're screwed.

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How do other 3g phones deal with this issue?
by minimalist / July 1, 2008 9:43 AM PDT

It seems like it might just be one of those annoying things cellular carriers do.

For example, if you take out a contract and get a phone and then you move to an area that doesn't have coverage after the initial 30 day return period you will still have to pay the early termination fee even though they can no longer provide you with service (this happened to a friend of mine). This should be regulated of course but that's the way it currently is.

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ATT releases iPhone Data plan details. SMS $5 extra. etc etc
by wizkids32 / July 1, 2008 7:27 AM PDT

They don't seam as bad as every one though we didn't know until it came out and the Data plan was eventually wrong that we got the first time around we should have just waited until it came out from AT&T until it comes out from them and don't believed every think that was leaked because it wasn't true and they have changed the pricing on their data plans.

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Interestingly though,
by DaveBinM / July 1, 2008 12:24 PM PDT

there is the "no commitment" version, which appeals to me. A lot. It might be more expensive up front. But I want to have the iPhone on my carrier, so if I can buy a "no commitment" iPhone, activate it, run ZiPhone on it, and use it, and it costs me a few hundered extra, that's okay by me. It's still far cheaper than buying it, then having it on a contract.

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yeah....
by iJuleguy / July 2, 2008 5:22 AM PDT
In reply to: Interestingly though,

But you won't be able to buy it on the 11th, and it might take a while for a jailbreak to pop up, maybe even longer for an unlocking process. You might be better off getting the 1st gen iphone...

What carrier do you have?

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Well,
by DaveBinM / July 2, 2008 8:36 AM PDT
In reply to: yeah....

I have Virgin Mobile. In Australia, so the 1st gen iPhone isn't available here, and never has been, but I don't mind waiting a little bit. I'm happy to wait to get something I want.

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oh
by iJuleguy / July 2, 2008 9:30 AM PDT
In reply to: Well,

I assumed you were in the USA. Ignore my other post.

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Possible workaround for iPhone 3G on existing iPhone plan
by LunaticSX / July 2, 2008 2:57 PM PDT

The extra $5/month for 200 SMS messages was enough to make me consider not upgrading from my 1st gen iPhone. Exhorbitant monthly fees really get me steamed. I went from a $30/month plan to $40/month + $20/month for unlimited data when I first bought my iPhone. I saw the extra $20/month for unlimited data as just the price I had to pay (my previous phone was just a phone). Adding $10/month to my voice plan was then the other price I had to pay for an iPhone. Ok.

With the 3G iPhone, I can see the extra $10/month for the faster data plan as yet again being another "price I have to pay," for adding something more.

The unbundling of the text messages, though, tips it over from that for me into AT&T being just greedy. On my original $30/month plan I occasionally used SMS, and paid for each one, but it was still less than their newer $40/month plans. Part of my acceptance of going to the $40/month with my iPhone was that I got some SMS messages included, so it balanced out ok.

What I've ben thinking is that I wish I could get the new hardware, but keep it on my existing, $40+$20/month plan, and I'd just live with the slower EDGE speeds for a while.


"One 'work around' would be to buy as a new customer if you pass the credit check, pay the 200+tax. Then cancel immediately, keep the phone, and pay the $175 fee. Not a horrible idea."

Now THIS might be something I could do to achieve what I was thinking, above. I could buy the new hardware (I'd get a 16 GB one to add more hardware improvements over my existing 8 GB iPhone) and put it on a brand NEW plan, keeping my existing iPhone and its plan. Then cancel that new plan, pay the $175, unlock the new iPhone 3G, if necessary, and just drop in the SIM card from my existing 1st gen iPhone!

I might have to wait for the hacks to come out to unlock it, but since I'd be using the SIM out of an existing iPhone there's a very good possibility it might "just work" (especially since the SIMs in existing iPhones already have the "3G" logo stamped on them, so presumably they can already be moved into other 3G phones).

My total cost would be $300 for the 8 GB iPhone + $48 activation fee (ugh) + $175 early termination fee = $523. (Might the activation fee be refundable, though?)

Then, since I bought my original iPhone on the first day for $600 (worth every penny), I got the $100 rebate, which I've saved. If I get an iPhone 3G at an Apple store I could use that rebate (at least I should HOPE so).

A total of $423 (plus tax) for a 16 GB iPhone 3G while keeping my $60/month existing plan that has unlimited EDGE data plus some included SMS text messages might just be worth it.

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omg subject please enter!!!1
by iJuleguy / July 2, 2008 4:39 PM PDT

"What I've ben thinking is that I wish I could get the new hardware, but keep it on my existing, $40+$20/month plan, and I'd just live with the slower EDGE speeds for a while."

I'm pretty sure if you get that to work, you would be getting 3G speeds. I'm using my old Samsung Sync, and I get 3G coverage with my iPhone sim inserted.

"I might have to wait for the hacks to come out to unlock it, but since I'd be using the SIM out of an existing iPhone there's a very good possibility it might "just work" (especially since the SIMs in existing iPhones already have the "3G" logo stamped on them, so presumably they can already be moved into other 3G phones)."

I can already tell you how that's going to end up. When I had my 1st gen replaced, the replacement had to be re-activated(all I had to do is enter in my last 4 SSN). And just recently, I tried to swap sims with my friend(iphone user) and both of the phones had the usual '-...' in the carrier.

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