Verizon nixes the one-year contract option from April 17th

Verizon nixes the one-year contract option from April 17th
Big Red will no longer have the option to fall into its warm embrace for just a year. The only contracts you can sign will be for two years length, effective April 17th. Here's the memo sent to Verizon's stores nationwide:

"From: Verizon Wireless

Date: April 6, 2011

Subject: 1-Year Contract Elimination

Effective April 17, 2011, Verizon Wireless will further simplify the VZW service experience by removing the one year customer agreement (CA) option for most customers.

This means VZW will no longer offer one-year CAs to consumers, including those who are “employee liable end users” (ELEU), any business customers without an ECPD profile and the “grandfathered” Alltel Lifetime customers.

For those agents/retailers whoa re authorized to support business customers with an ECPD profile, VZW will continue to provide the one-year CA for those types of customers, based on their negotiated agreements.

This policy change applies to all transactions, plan types, and device types. Customers should continue to be informed of all VZW service options available to them, such as Prepay, Month to Month, and 2 year CAs.

Thank you for your support with this change. Training to support the available will be available."

Granted, most people prefer their high-end smartphones in the $200 ballpark, so they sign up for two-year contracts anyway, but given how quickly phones depreciate these days, except for the iPhone, even one year contract seems long. Moreover, Verizon already changed the terms of the New Every Two program earlier this year.

According to Big Red these moves aim to simplify life for consumers, but when has cutting down on choices been a good thing, and not only in the cell phone plans universe. All current yearly contracts will be valid until expiration, and will have to be renewed for two years afterwards. The new contract policy, however, affects only individual users - National, Federal, Goverment, Major and Small Business Accounts will still be able to choose a one-year contract agreement.

Thanks for the tip!

via SmartPhoneNation & GadgetU


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45 Comments

44. Krajo1469 unregistered

First if all, you guys all realize that phones are luxury items, right? Second, it makes me laugh that somebody would change carriers because of something they didn't use to begin with (one year contracts). That's just ridiculous! Especially if you were happy with the carrier to begin with. You are all complaining about contracts is silly too. I assume you all have cars, and homes, and jobs, right? Are there not contracts for those things? Not to mention if you have kids! You are stuck with them for at least 18 years! Verizon must be doing something right if they have over 90 million customers!

43. abit unregistered

The way the majority of the American public buys cell phones on-contract, they want the phone cheap up-front. Of course, a lot of people won't go for a 1-year. The other issue is that the one-year price when you're in store is buried under the rest of the text advertising the phone and only the 2-year price is shown in large bold letters. That and the reps usually don't ask if you want a 1-year contract either (well, at least the 10 or so years I've been with Verizon). 1-year contracts also didn't make much sense if you had a plan that made you eligible for an early upgrade. Now that's gone, a 1-year contact was more attractive if you wanted to upgrade early at a discounted price. With 1-year contracts gone, now people have to wait longer if they want a new phone. Just another ploy to get guaranteed money from the customer.

42. kcombs

Posts: 275; Member since: Dec 15, 2010

the contract should not matter, if you are happy with your service then whats the big deal? I'm with att (and work for them) and they just released a 20 month deal, meaning every 20 month's you are able to upgrade your phone with a 2yr discount. Verizon is probably doing the same thing we are, we changed the price for early upgrade and pretty much did away with the 1yr contract because no one wants that.

40. MorePhonesThanNeeded unregistered

Lol, I have never seen so much crap in one place, well actually I have. All the uproar over 1 year contract termination at Verizon. I've been at Verizon for over 5 years and well I have never seen an attractive 1 year plan ever. All these people complaining are either confused of just like wasting money, a one year contract the phone cost $100-$150 more than a two year, perhaps you enjoy paying the extra upfront for not having the 2 year contract but you were allowed to get in on the new every two, or the early upgrade in a year. To Verizon the 1 year is just a waste as not many people actually take advantage of it and it offers little else except not being stuck with them for more than a year, everything else about it is horrible about it. Verizon made the change for business reasons obviously and you crying about it makes little sense as you have no business sense to begin with...care to argue which multi-national billion dollar company do you own? A company is out there to stay afloat, while giving you a service...it's up to you to do your own research before you get yourself into any contracts. Don't cry about something you didn't read first before signing. All this me, me, me stuff....grow up and stop being so ridiculous. Who the hell needs to get the newest tech every time it becomes available...such a waste. To each his own I guess, Verizon phones get recycled in my house.

37. oh-hai unregistered

ok I'm sorry but in 3 years doing sales NO ONE has ever chosen the 1yr option over the 2yr contract. Why? because people want the cheaper price. Once you tell a person the 1yr price is $70 more than the 2yr they do not want 1yr anymore, hell if i told a customer that they can get an iphone 4 for $100 to do a 4 yr contract they will probably do it. The problem is that people want to have either the least amount of years on a contract or no contract and get a phone for little or no money down. That just doesn't make sense and will not happen i'm sorry. It's also funny to me that everyone makes a big deal about this when the majority of people didnt even know that you could get a 1yr contract until it was announced its going away. Everyone is just complaining that the option is gone but yet no one used it to begin with. I guess peope get angry of having less choices even though you wouldn't even consider the alternative option.

41. btbotimtim

Posts: 272; Member since: Dec 08, 2010

what? you are kidding me... when i used verizon, i alwasy got 1 year contract. look at the comment #33, dude. maybe your customers want cheaper phones. maybe you work in ghetto.

35. jp unregistered

Verizon starting to SUCK real bad. Greed is a horrible thing.

33. btbotimtim

Posts: 272; Member since: Dec 08, 2010

now i have t-mobile even more plus but used pay 70 dollars more to get 1 year contract from verizon. there is no reason for me to go back to verizon anymore. (i know verizon has better reception but t-mobile also works good in my area.)

29. yodaynp

Posts: 3; Member since: Apr 08, 2011

Getting rid of the 1 year contract makes no difference, its not going to change anything. You will see there are more two year agreements than the 1 year. Everyone who is complaining about it and threatening to leave Verizon should leave. Your the same ones who cannot take responsibility for your actions and act like children when you call in..you know who you are when you start swearing and yelling and threaten to leave wanting to get your way.

26. Das70

Posts: 124; Member since: Jan 05, 2011

Gezz the sense of entitlement from many of you.LOL The problem is you are all addicted to smart phones, Thats not verizons fault. If you need a new device every year, go someplace else. Theres plenty of prepaid carriers. If you are going to whine and say " But Verizon is the best." Well then you will just have to eat crow and either do ETF to quell your new phone thirst or stick around for two years. Either way Verizon wins.LOL All i know is I enjoy my non contract smartphone with unlimited everything.

27. snowgator

Posts: 3630; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Depending on your phone, I absolutely bow to your wisdom. I hope to settle on a carrier that doesn't offend me, find as "future proof" of a phone as I can with the options and strengths I want, and hope for the best. So far, no non-contract smartphone or company has come close to those options. More then willing to give one a chance, though.

28. Das70

Posts: 124; Member since: Jan 05, 2011

Every area has a prepaid that works best for them. Just remember it wont be the best and the internet speeds can be slow but dooable. I have a blackberry with Metropcs and its fine. Keep in mind though I dont spend all day playing with my phone. I have friends who have metros android phones and they are perfectly happy with them. Yes they dont have the speeds of the big carrier phones, but ya know what?? Two or three years ago they would have been top of the line. All the other prepaids have androids as well now. Pricing is great and I get better call quality in my area with metro than I did with sprint.(signal constantly dropped in my house) Bottom line I guess...If you want your phone to pretty much replace your computer internet browsing and gaming and travel a lot, it may be better to stick with Verizon when it comes to those. If you want a phone to do light browsing, unlimited minutes and texting for a low price of at least $50 a month.($60 for BB) Go with a prepaid. Phones are not that expensive as well.(TMO while they are still seperate has a great prepaid plan, I may go to them later in the year) Just remember though if you want a phone to be blazing fast and the most updated tech be willing to pay big bucks every month and now apparently be stuck with the same phone for two years. I just wont subject myself to those terms any longer as long as prepaid is around.

22. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Move to Canada and enjoy a 3yr contract...

20. abit unregistered

wow...besides the great cell service I get with Verizon, another reason I stick is the fact that they have 1-year contracts if I so want one. With these 2-year contracts, I think US cell providers should move towards more how Europe does it where the phone price varies depending on what your plan is. That would allow more flexibility for people.

18. Diego C. unregistered

There's no doubt verizon's phone turnaround will be affected specially on the Android side. Don't expect people going after the latest and greatest every time, at $700 not many will be able to afford to change their phones every year any more.

14. trin

Posts: 88; Member since: May 11, 2010

Smh. Jesus H. True, keeping the one year option would be a benefit over, or in-line with the competition. I'm in cellphone sales. Over the last two years I've maybe done 2-3 1yr contracts on anything. People generally don't want to pay anything, much less an increase in price for a device on contract. Options are available. With smartphones changing and "upgrading" at a faster pace, online pre-owned sales will increase. I believe if you have your own device you can a sign a month to month contract. You can choose to pay full retail. Not always a viable economic option but freedom isn't exactly free. The cellphone industry is changing. The smart companies aren't sitting back on their billions without trying to figure out how to get just a lil bit more YOY

13. Gary unregistered

No problem. I bought my Incredible used when CM6 was ready, and I'll buy my next phone used. One-year contracts aren't as stupid as two-year, but they're still stupid.

12. ChrisTheTechGuy

Posts: 85; Member since: Nov 04, 2010

This is a fake. Trust me.

16. myron unregistered

Nope. I called VZW today - it's 100% true.

36. ChrisTheTechGuy

Posts: 85; Member since: Nov 04, 2010

thanks for calling me out, my previous comment was incorrect. wonderful how they lack the communication internally

11. kellybl131

Posts: 42; Member since: Jan 19, 2009

Maybe I'm missing something, but the fee of those "locked" contacts combined with the two year pricing of the device is 99% of the time cheaper than buying it outright. So either way, you are going to pay more to either be out of contract, or to cancel it if you change your mind.

9. rugrat unregistered

I don't consider "sodomy" a simplified life. Thanks Verizon!

6. snowgator

Posts: 3630; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Two years is too long with a device, and the Mobile industry knows it. Get the majority of your customers onto a two year plan, put out much better devices every year, and charge upgrade fees out the Ying and the Yang. I have almost decided to wait until I can pay for the device I want outright, and screw the savings at initial sign up.

8. CRICKETownz

Posts: 980; Member since: Oct 24, 2009

I don't think it's on the manufacturer to worry about the impatience of those consumers who always have to have the latest thing. Their job is to make money. If you fall victim to "I gotta have it right now"...thats on the you. Why blame anyone else?

15. myron unregistered

Verizon isn't the manufacturer. The manufacturer doesn't set contract terms.

25. snowgator

Posts: 3630; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Solid point- except since my last contract: ETFs have risen, the price of new devices if discounted for a two year contract have risen from about 100$ to between 150$ - 200$, the price of a new, "premium" device has jumped from about 300$ to in the area of 400-500$ without contract, AT&T has risen their "non-contract" prices even more, and for that you get the privledge of decent to poor customer service, eratic updates to the device you just paid through the nose for, New tech being improved because the phone you just bought didn't get it right and it will be oh so much better in 8 months on the next device, and the right to rant on Phone Arena to vent. I do not need to be pointed out to me that the need to jump from one device to another every year is "on me", I need a company and a carrier to figure out a way that it is profitable for them to position themselves to allow for that for those who desire it instead trying to find ways to punish it. They will figure it out, when another carrier steps up, and snatches away customers over time. Until then, Verizon just removed another option for those that chose it.

5. Goldeneye

Posts: 419; Member since: Jan 22, 2011

Relax folks we are getting a "simplified" life, well at least that's what big red says, what a joke!

4. rugrat unregistered

What a bunch of crap! Maybe I'll go back to US Cellular.

3. msa1988

Posts: 418; Member since: Mar 30, 2010

They are doing everything they possibly can to lock you in with their claws and make sure you don't go anywhere. This is getting ridiculous. I have verizon and probably always will, but I hope to god Sprint steps its game up and gives verizon some serious competition so they will lighten up on their customers....

7. CRICKETownz

Posts: 980; Member since: Oct 24, 2009

How are you getting "locked in" exactly? Aren't all the terms and the conditions disclosed to you before you sign up...then it becomes your choice from that point? Also no contract is always an option but let me guess...you don't like the idea of paying full retail for a phone. You could even buy a Verizon phone from ebay & activate it no contract. People have been fine paying $200 for the latest smartphone on a 2 year agreement but now that 1 year contracts are going away (probably b/c the demographic of those who actually take advantage of 1 year contracts are pretty low) everyone is pro-1 year contract now. Verizon could offer free service for a year plus any smartphone & tablet you want for free and I guarantee there will be some dirt bag complaining about it. Moral of the story, people just love to bitch & moan.

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