AT&T opens up and explains its new ETF policy change

AT&T opens up and explains its new ETF policy change
In order to get their point across without certain aspects being misconstrued in the process, AT&T was prompt in offering an open letter to its customers about yesterday's surfaced reports about the new policy change affecting ETFs. In their letter, the changes surrounding the new ETF policies were confirmed as the ETF now stands at $325 with a $10 reduction each month while you're on contract with a smartphone. As far as feature and quick messaging phones are concerned, it'll actually be lowered to $150 with a $4 reduction each month as you continue to be a customer. The letter started off by saying, “At AT&T, we work hard every day to provide you with a great wireless experience at competitive prices.” They go right into it explaining that they are able to offer a “great wireless experience at competitive prices” by offering you “the industry's leading wireless handsets below their full retail price when you sign a two-year service agreement.”

If you happen to not sit tight with that notion, then there are clearly some other solutions they offer to customers such as bypassing the ETF altogether by purchasing a handset at full price with no commitment or going the prepaid route with their GoPhone options. Nonetheless, the two top wireless carriers in the country have already set the wheel in motion for the rising ETF fees associated with smartphones and lowering of it for feature phones. It's difficult to foresee how this new move will shake up the industry – will others follow suit? Or will we begin to see a shift in customers bailing the postpaid route in favor of prepaid?

source: AT&T



1. Jyakotu

Posts: 867; Member since: Dec 12, 2008

Well, at least it reduced $10 for every month. So in 12 months: $375 - $120 = $255.

2. heynowwwww

Posts: 1; Member since: May 22, 2010

Apparently you just have lots of money to blow! Even after one year the ETF is STILL more expensive then what it used to be!!! So now ATT is going to raise it so they have expensive plans with their crappy network? At least Verizon has expensive plans AND the network for customers! Absolutely NO reason for anyone to go to ATT except for the Iphone! This is probably ATT preparing for the fact that other carriers are getting the Iphone and they know everyone is going to jump ship to go to Verizon and Sprint to get the Iphone or EVO! ATT will fall to below Metro PCS

4. iHateCrapple

Posts: 734; Member since: Feb 12, 2010

Below MetroPCS? Ouch bro, LOL! As much as I despise ATT, even I wouldn't have put them that low......+1 anyway!

5. carp45

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 09, 2009

yes I hate at&t too especially the way they cripple their phones so you have to buy their services. the only way I would go back to them is if I bought my own unlocked phone

8. jil77

Posts: 24; Member since: Feb 18, 2010

So if AT&T raised the etf because they are losing the Iphone why did Verizon raise thairs?

9. jtucker1987

Posts: 89; Member since: May 06, 2010

I have never had a crippled AT&T phone, but I have had plenty of crippled verizon phones. I had the palm pre plus and was told by both palm and verizon that the gps was locked down. Makes sense since I could never find myself on google maps. If you dont agree with me don't be rude....people are very rude on this site anymore. From my experience I've had great service with both verizon and AT&T. I would have stayed with verizon and my droid (which I miss) if they hadn't cheated me out of money. My droid wasn't receiving service and I had phone insurance plus the extended warranty so it should have been covered. Verizon said no, made me buy a new droid at full retail and TOOK back the broken droid. I found out later that the broken droid was fixed with a simple service. The retailer who took my broken droid and made me buy a new one sold the broken (now fixed) droid on eBay. I found out about this and filed a police report. The employee was fired and I was able to avoid the ETF. True story!! I miss my droid :(

10. jil77

Posts: 24; Member since: Feb 18, 2010

Get yourself a nexus one. With a nexus one I dont thing you will miss your droid. Unless a physical keyboard is a must for you.

11. jtucker1987

Posts: 89; Member since: May 06, 2010

I would love a nexus one but the only thing stopping me is the fact that I always hear it has 3g issues. Can anyone confirm or deny this for me?

17. ILOVEIPHONE25 unregistered


18. Cali_E

Posts: 196; Member since: Sep 24, 2008

lol i just find this response (5) as being really ironic cause everyone was saying that about verizon no more than a year ago. so funny

19. hbk

Posts: 9; Member since: May 15, 2010

Sounds like someone went to an indirect agent to save themselves a rebate form. Reason being- an actual verizon employee wouldn't want you to buy another droid because they have to sell accessories with each phone they sell regardless if its full retail price. If your phone wasn't receiving service that was definitely covered under warranty which any corporate store would have swapped out without any problems or maybe you simply dealt with a crabby sales rep, but it definitely sounds like you were dealing with an indirect agent.

21. pingpong

Posts: 145; Member since: Mar 28, 2010

I got a Nexus. Excellent phone. I don't really have any 3G issues even with Tmo (Tmo Employee so I ain't complaining on how much I pay for my service). I have heard though that Nexus runs a lot faster on ATT's 3G. Considering the developer support for the N1, I'm sure you will be really happy with it as the rest of us N1 owners are.

22. jil77

Posts: 24; Member since: Feb 18, 2010

I have the nexus one on at&t! Two to be exact, one for myself and one for the wife. They work great for us, as for 3G/reception just as good as any phone I have ever owned.

23. chack_fu

Posts: 46; Member since: Jan 19, 2009

Serves you right for even thinking about going to an agent location.... Pay the price for a Corporate location.

25. Mateo8326

Posts: 472; Member since: Jul 15, 2009

so what was verizon reason to do it 1st then lol

3. iHateCrapple

Posts: 734; Member since: Feb 12, 2010

Just following the leader...

6. sirjudson

Posts: 7; Member since: Apr 18, 2010

The Bold 9700 retails at $450 and is currently being offered at $99.99 after a $100 mail in rebate. Currently, the ETF fee is $175, prorating down by $5 for every month service is kept. If someone were to cancel after 6 months, they would be paying $145. Basically, they have paid $245 for the $450 phone. I feel this increase is totally justified.

7. runin2music

Posts: 14; Member since: Mar 11, 2010

I agree. The carriers have to do something to protect themselves from cheats who (will no longer be able to) bend the retail contracts in their favor, i.e. coming out on top by purchasing a smartphone at a super low sale price on a bare minimum plan, buying out the contract early, then turning around and selling the smartphone on eBay to make a profit. Too many people did it to Verizon, too many people will no longer do it to AT&T. That's why both carriers have raised the ETFs on smartphones only. They're reducing the risk to their bottom's called staying in business for the people who don't abuse the system.

12. jtucker1987

Posts: 89; Member since: May 06, 2010

Runin2music, I meant to give you a +1 and hit the wrong button by accident. My bad!!

13. rwolf1984

Posts: 536; Member since: Jun 06, 2009

i think its just sucks to hear prices are going up...anyways, i bet apple is going to offer a deal to lure people away from android on other more people are getting smart phones so that shift had to force a shift in the etf...

16. ILOVEIPHONE25 unregistered


24. runin2music

Posts: 14; Member since: Mar 11, 2010

no worries. Thanks!

14. theman414

Posts: 132; Member since: Jun 08, 2009

Better think twice before joining AT&T and Verizon, or adding new lines!

15. ILOVEIPHONE25 unregistered

why are so many people hating Verizon and ATT? You guys don't understand business.. The HTC incredible is retailed at 600 bucks and so is the IPhone, all of these phone companies sell for cheap at around $200 bucks... What you have to understand is that people take these phones and sign the contract..weeks later to leave the company and sell the phone making an incredible profit off of the phone. Its not that big of a deal..don't sign the contract if you don't want it...GO GET ONE OF THOSE CRAPPY WALMART PHONES.

20. exotica6279

Posts: 11; Member since: Mar 15, 2010

I'm getting the evo and I don't think sprint has the balls to raise the ETF look at their reputation they got some of the rudest most ignorant customer base ever. They started out the same way metro and cricket did. Then had bad service and people of a lower credit class got them cause they couldn't get att or verizon. You would have a rampage if sprint did that look at how mad customers got when sprint said you had to pay 10 extra a month to use 4g on the evo alot of people are pissed because of that. Then you have tmobile the carrier anyone can get on these days it woud be an even worst situation. Look at the nexus one that said that everyone had to be on an indivual plan to get the N1 then they themselves ended up not selling manny at all. Cause their type of customer might just leave and say screw it and it be on their credit. I've met countless people who have a mobile bill in collections. And as long as they don't want that to happen they will never do it. When you have alot of careless people on the network it could cause destruction of the company. People could just not sign contract and go else where. What happen if the fcc forces carriers to pay the EFT if they are switching carriers. Then they will regret the high EFT's. This is just a prediction by i read people way to well. att and verizons customer are more responsible, most of sprint and tmobile customers my be on the careless side. They could try but i feel it will end in failure.

26. Mateo8326

Posts: 472; Member since: Jul 15, 2009

Yo who really cares it only a matter of time before sprint and tmobile do the same thing trust me

27. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Please do not whine about AT&T raising their ETFs on new subscribers. Verizon's ETFs are still higher.

28. iHateCrapple

Posts: 734; Member since: Feb 12, 2010

When we are talking about several hundred dollars....$25 isnt that big of a deal, IMO. ATT-$325 VZW-$350 You'd still pay out the a** either way...

29. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010


30. whocares

Posts: 235; Member since: Dec 19, 2009

25 bucks buys a 30

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