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Verizon Changing Upgrade Policy, Say Bye Bye to 1-year Upgrades

And we have bad news just before we take off for Las Vegas.  According to new Verizon training slides, the 1-year upgrade option that many of us have enjoyed for years is going away starting January 16th.  Customers on 2-year contracts will now have to wait until the 20th month of their deal to even begin to think about upgrading.  Talk about depressing.  We live in a time when phones become almost obsolete just months after they are released and having to wait at least 20 months for the option to upgrade is a giant step in the wrong direction.

It should be noted that 1-year contracts are not affected, so that becomes option number 1 for those of us addicted to new technology.  When your current contract is up, you might want to consider going with a 1 year plan and forking out the extra $50-100 on the phone or you’ll be stuck for 2 years.  [Insert sad face]

The good news is, we’ll be at CES all week and will have plenty of opportunities to drill VZW reps on this subject.

Via:  Android Central

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Adam-Smith/100000513036601 Adam Smith

    “We live in a time when phones become almost obsolete just months after they are released and having to wait at least 20 months for the option to upgrade is a giant step in the wrong direction.”

    GROW UP! IT’S A PHONE, not your entire life

  • Brad

    I would just like to point out that Verizon has ALWAYS had 1-year upgrade options, if you choose a 1-year contract, like I do. In fact, a 1-year contract lets you get subsidized upgrades every 10 months. The catches are that there was no NE2 upgrade discount, and you have to pay $70 more than the advertised 2-year contract price for whatever phone you choose. I’m guessing the extra cost is to partly make up for what they lose in the subsidized part of the phone cost that you would have paid through your rate plan over the additional year. Yes, it’s a little more money up front, but it keeps me from having to pay full price for a phone, and 10 months is a very acceptable upgrade window, to stay with current technology.

  • DudeLove987

    I just called 2 different people at verizon and neither one has heard anything about an upgrade policy change

  • Fghf Gvj

    shoeboxs.us

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  • Satisfiedverizoncustomer

    other carriers dont even let you upgrade your phone unless your contract is over. i feel verizon has been doing everyone a favor. i dont feel they did us wrong. if you want to upgrade after a year, get the one year contract.

  • http://twitter.com/EvanTheGamer EvanTheGamer

    Ahhh, yeah…that makes sense. It still sucks for the people who will have to pay an extra $50-100 just so they can get their Upgrade sooner, instead of at 20 months.

  • http://twitter.com/EvanTheGamer EvanTheGamer

    Ahhh, yeah…that makes sense. It still sucks for the people who will have to pay an extra $50-100 just so they can get their Upgrade sooner, instead of at 20 months.

  • W36543645eyj

    supershops.org

  • Dfgfd Gfh

    shoeboxs.us

  • Loubernocco91

    I guess they won’t be needing too many of their stores with this policy. Verizon may start going the other way if AT&T comes up with better service.

  • Anonymous

    OK, before every busts out their pitchforks and torches think about it for a min. I don’t like it either, but what likely happened after a year was Verizon broke even (at least on their spreadsheets) on their subsidy to the consumer. Now in my glass half filled word, this tells me they are going to be giving a greater subsidy on the coming 4G hardware which is more expensive than current phones to keep the price points in check. So instead of a 1 year upgrade, we’ll have cheaper 4G phones, latest spec phones.
    Again, many of us may rather have the former, but if 4G phones come out at <=$250 with Tegra 2 and all the other latest specs then that will be a plus for those who rather see phones prices not jump.

  • Anonymous

    Notice it says the 1-year upgrade is going away as a standard practice. The fact they included that qualifier tells me it’ll still be an option to those you have a lot of lines or know how to complain or some other means.

  • Cha3st3r3

    So if I’m ok with having a phone for 20 months, and I’m already enrolled in a 2 year contract and am gonna keep using 2 year contracts…does anything change for me?

    • Bigrob60

      I don’t think it does. You just can’t upgrade before 20 months.

  • Cleindian44

    AT&T has been doing this for years – welcome to the party, Big Red!

  • Anonymous

    Well I was definitely going to a one year contract anyway after my current contract ends, so this just confirms that.

  • Anonymous

    Drill…baby…drill…

  • microdot

    I really think that contracts and phones should be seperate. Contracts are there to assure you stay their customer so make you sign a 3, hell even 4 year contract but allow you to upgrade your phone whenever you want as long a you are willing to cough up $200 everytime you do so. They have your monthly bill which includes $30/month for 4 yrs, what does it matter what phone you have.

  • Fireproof1905

    I call “BS” on this, I think that it will be like the unlimited data pricing thing that happened a couple of weeks or months ago.. I’ve talked with one of my good friends who a regional manager for verizon and he said he has not heard of any plans on this to happen, i also called vzw support and talked to three different stores all who say the same thing about this.. I hope your sources are wrong on this one again…. vzw upgrade policy is what helps them to stay one of the leading carriers… anyways can’t wait to hear more on ces…

    • Fireproof1905

      vzw should have learned something, that’s why wirefly/bestbuy/ and basically any other online store beats there pants off selling phones,

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  • larry

    First world problems. Do you really need a new phone every year? For the past eight years I’ve only had three phones.

  • Ere5tgt

    ta.gg/4vp

  • GulMiguel

    I guess I shouldn’t be surprised…I spent all those years getting frakked by AT&T, so naturally when I finally get wise and leave to go to Verizon, now those bastards are going to start doing the same type of crap. It’s a damn good thing that I have a Droid X. At least if I have to wait 16 more months before I can upgrade, I have what up until now has been considered top of the line. It’s not inconceivable that I just never renew and stay out of contract. DX has taught me what I want in a phone. If the newer models are not significantly justifying of the high dollar that we all KNOW VZW will charge for them, I can honestly say that I can frakking wait; especially with policies like this new hot mess in place.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1276750673 Earl Painter

    Verizon now officially sucks in my book.

  • Gogreen1975

    This sucks! I guess I need to look at those one year contract prices now.

  • Nölff

    That stupid stockart image of the business meeting or whatever makes me hate everything. I hate everything.

  • Bigrob60

    A few things. If your on the 13-19th month of a 2yr contract(soon to be just 20th month) and upgrade(I’ve never done this) then, what happens to the last 7-5 months, Do they just get tacked on to the new 2yr(2yrs & 7-5months) or do they just go by the wayside? Which I doubt. If tacked on, why would anyone do this. Adding more time under the thumb of a contract. Argggg! With 1yr, you still get the discount on the phone although your paying some extra from the $199. Upgrading is faster then 2yr. 12months. Plus you”ll have the freedom of not being in a contract after the12 month. Bonus!!

    I’ve already made the decision to only do 1yr contracts from here on out. That way if I want to upgrade after a year I can. If not, I’ll enjoy some non-contract goodness. As I am right now. That is untill CES. Come on tax refund.

  • Jawshua

    Oh I get it now. Well thanks Verizon you’ve convinced me to change to a one year contact. You are so stupid and horrible with customer service.

    You said “drill” them, shouldn’t you harass them instead and tell them how stupid their new policy is?

  • SMOKNCARS

    1-4-2011 AT 2:37

    I JUST TALKED TO VERIZON AS I CAN HAVE A 1 YEAR UPGRADE ON JAN 20TH AND THEY SAID THAT THIS IS NOT TRY…THE LADY ON THE PHONE SAID THAT SHE HAS SEEN NOTHING ABOUT THIS AND THAT I CAN STILL HAVE MY 1 YEAR UPGRADE ON JAN 20TH. SHE EVEN ASKED ME WHERE I SEEN THIS AND I SAID DROID-LIFE.COM BUT AGAIN SAID IT IS NOT TRUE.

    (GUESS WE WILL SEE)

    MATT

  • SMOKNCARS

    1-4-2011 AT 2:37

    I JUST TALKED TO VERIZON AS I CAN HAVE A 1 YEAR UPGRADE ON JAN 20TH AND THEY SAID THAT THIS IS NOT TRY…THE LADY ON THE PHONE SAID THAT SHE HAS SEEN NOTHING ABOUT THIS AND THAT I CAN STILL HAVE MY 1 YEAR UPGRADE ON JAN 20TH. SHE EVEN ASKED ME WHERE I SEEN THIS AND I SAID DROID-LIFE.COM BUT AGAIN SAID IT IS NOT TRUE.

    (GUESS WE WILL SEE)

    MATT

    • Anonymous

      the sad thing is we know more then the verizon reps. They are told to deny anything until any leaked information becomes public. No matter how much evidence to the fact you may have, until verizon says is true, the verizon reps will deny it

      • SMOKNCARS

        Well i guess i will see if i get my upgrade on jan 20th and because their calls are recorded, theres the evidence if they lie there are options on handling that, i also emailed them and wait for them to say the same in an email.

        • Anonymous

          if youre scheduled for a NE2 upgrade or the 1 year early upgrade now, the changes wont take effect until you upgrade…it does nothing to your upgrade as you and vzw have a contract until you upgrade…for vzw to change that contract they MUST give you the option to opt out…when you upgrade that terminates your current contract and starts a new one

    • Anonymous

      the sad thing is we know more then the verizon reps. They are told to deny anything until any leaked information becomes public. No matter how much evidence to the fact you may have, until verizon says is true, the verizon reps will deny it

  • Bob Jope

    Just go on 1yr contracts! I have done it since 2003, and only pay $50-$70 more when something better comes out. The title of this post is misleading, I thought they were doing away with 1yr contracts/upgrades. Good to know that I can remain close to the lifecycle of the faster evolving smartphone market.

    • Bigrob60

      ” I thought they were doing away with 1yr contracts/upgrades”
      I thought the same thing. Was really worried for a few there. 1yrs here I come.

  • Not Happy

    The elimination of the New Every Two program is the deal breaker for me. They used to give you $100 credit towards a new phone, then it dropped to $50, then it dropped to $30, and now it is nothing.

    Total B.S. The New Every Two was one of the main reasons I stuck with Verizon so long; the other was keeping my existing phone number. Phone number portability eliminated the second reason, but I have no incentive to stay with Verizon with the elimination the NE2 program.

    It is actually better to ride out your contract, cancel the service, and then get all of the incentives they offer to “new” customers.

    So much for customer loyalty.

    • Jace Hope

      What incentives? You still get the promo price.

  • Anonymous

    Ok so I’ve talked with verizon employees and they have told me that if you are the primary line you can upgrade after a year. I’m guessing this is what’s ending? And if so will I be “grandfathered” in until next time?

  • Tom

    Just one more step closer to Verizon getting out of the equipment business altogether.

  • Fakeemail

    lol, no one used 1 yr upgrades. The price difference between the two would alway have cust’s leaning towards the 2yr. A cust can upgrade their device anytime they want. It’s called going into a store a paying full retail for a device.

    • Anonymous

      paying full retail is asinine.. I consider my droid X worth the 200 I paid for it.. i do NOT consider it worth the 600 it costs at full retail

    • Anonymous

      paying full retail is asinine.. I consider my droid X worth the 200 I paid for it.. i do NOT consider it worth the 600 it costs at full retail

    • Anonymous

      i used my 1 year upgrade to get my Droid…

    • Anonymous

      Well you can do that all you want if your a moron..Your paying double,sometimes triple what you should. Not the brightest comment Ive ever seen

  • Hwellj13

    Well, I hope they come out with some new phones before the 16th then…

    • NKTizzle

      Why? If you’re on an existing contract this doesn’t affect your ability to upgrade early.

  • Brochaos

    wait i’m confused, someone help. the only option i see after 12 months on a 2 year contract is to “upgrade” for “full price”. why would anyone miss that?

    • http://perpetualn00b.tumblr.com quiklives

      If you’re the primary (or only) line, you an get an early upgrade after a year into your two year contract, currently. They are doing away with that.

    • http://perpetualn00b.tumblr.com quiklives

      If you’re the primary (or only) line, you an get an early upgrade after a year into your two year contract, currently. They are doing away with that.

  • Anonymous

    I bet anyone that this is the result of the iphone coming to Verizon. AT&T can keep their precious. What else is going to change?

  • Burkett375

    So if my 1 year was up in November, and I’m waiting to upgrade to the “thunderbolt”, i can’t until this following Nov? Should I just upgrade now??

    • NKTizzle

      No, you will be able to upgrade to the Thunderbolt just fine when it launches.

  • http://twitter.com/hpizzy Hiral Patel

    Its all about the money for VZW – They know they have the best network. Well thank you VZW I will teach more people how to root their phones.

  • ninooo

    By everyone changing to 1yr contract, for the benefits and so they can change phone if needed, Verizon is gonna get more profit right? God I hate business…

    • NKTizzle

      Heaven forbid they make a profit…

      It’s not like they don’t use those profits to upgrade their network or anything…

      It’s very simple. If you want to upgrade often, pay MSRP or get a 1 year contract. The early upgrade fee wasn’t much cheaper than the 1 year contract pricing on devices.

  • Anonymous

    Use the Best Buy buyback program that just launched, problem solved.

    • http://perpetualn00b.tumblr.com quiklives

      Frankly, you’ll get more for your phones at some of the online buyback sites than you will from Best Buy.

  • Christopher641

    Give me a break…. “phones become almost obsolete just months after they are released”. Is that really true? I dont think Kellex understands what that obsolete really means. 2 year old phones will work fine. There is a difference between WANTING the newest phone and it being declared obsolete.

    While I am disappointed with Verizon’s decision and I’d like to upgrade more often (I am a Verizon customer BTW) this kind of hyperbole is not needed.

    • Cha3st3r3

      maybe not months..but they do become obselete much quicker than previous years
      a safe time would be about a year?
      there are posts of the droid x already having a obselete date

      • MikeD

        I think people are confusing discontinued with obsolete. If a company discontinues a product it is not automatically obsolete. It just means that the company no longer produces that product. Obsolete would mean that the produce is so old it is useless. Just like computers. I have a PC that HP stopped making. That doesn’t make it obsolete, I can still run all the latest games and software, even the newest operating systems, HP simply just does not produce the computer that I own anymore.

  • brinox

    i dont understand why three of the big four in the states don’t have different prices for off-contract or month-to-month customers. thats the entire reasoning for signing a contract and having “early-termination fees”; they want to force you into taking the hit in the “loss” that they would be taking if you canceled your plan.

    if services from verizon were cheaper for everyone, the majority of us smartphone users would do the math and see that buying a phone at MSRP would probably be cheaper over the course of two years given that we are not paying as much per month for service, and yet, they sell the phone outright and make blings of cash up front! how is that accounting fail?!

  • Gwaugh

    Well, can’t wait to get back to the office on Thursday and actually see the rest of this training…since this is only one slide, don’t get upset yet people, it says other special offers and promotions, so there will still be things in the works, at least from what I see here, but only the rest of the training material will tell :)

    • NKTizzle

      The promotions are going to be similar to the smartphone early upgrades the did last year. If you were on a feature phone they allowed you to upgrade early to a smartphone.

      I’m sure they’ll have other promotions/specials. It’s just not an across the board early upgrade program…

      Now, NE2, that’s a different story. That’s a little perk quite a few people have gotten used to. That may not be well received.

      • Gwaugh

        That’s what I thought too. NE2 going away is going to be weird, but hey, maybe they’ll go back to instant rebates rather than MIR. We’ll see. I don’t like that it’s only one slide that got leaked, and now it makes everything look all bad.

        • NKTizzle

          It’s not well communicated by the slide they show, that’s for sure.

        • DBK

          WAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH…..ooh aaahhh……WAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!! oh..wait…you were serious? O.o

    • None

      There are no special offers or promotions, Gwaugh. The rest of the training is about how to fight off the customer objections and email capture for “future offers”. Not a silver lining to this story.

  • tommytmt

    There was a one year upgrade policy??

  • Nexpos

    Terrible. One of the only good things about Verizon for years (until Droids).