We reported on the news about a possible hike in early upgrade prices on all AT&T smartphones, but it wasn't until recently that this was confirmed. AT&T's Android phones will now cost you a walloping $150 more if you choose to upgrade before your agreement has expired or $50 more if you pick up the phone off contract. The same applies to all other smartphones in the carrier's lineup. AT&T's favoritism of the iPhone was evident in the early smartphone days, but recently it has introduced a number of Android devices, which tipped the scales back to equal. The change in pricing, however, does show that the iPhone still has a special place in the carrier's roster as unlike other smart handsets, it will only see a $50 early-upgrade price increase.
Feature phones, known as Quick Messaging Phones in AT&T's terms, will see a minor $10 increase in early-upgrade cost and $20 in no commitment pricing terms.
”We’ve updated our early upgrade and no commitment price points for smartphones and feature phones,” an AT&T spokesperson confirmed to tech blog BGR. “Only customers who are not yet upgrade eligible or who do not want to sign a contract are impacted. As mobile devices become more sophisticated, their cost goes up. This change reflects the increased costs, while still allowing us to offer customers the latest device before they qualify. We’re happy to discuss individual account and upgrade needs one-on-one with customers.”
With dual-core handsets already out on the
market and quad-core devices coming in the near future, we can see
how one would want to change their handset even sooner, but you might well reconsider your decision - even more so if you've joined the Droid camp.