Just a week after T-Mobile, AT&T has announced that it will start offering no-contract plans for early upgrade of their smartphones. This means that we have two carriers now offering the customers option to pay for their smartphone devices in monthly installments. This option will let subscribers upgrade it once a year while T-Mobile offered twice a year. This means that AT&T isn’t letting T-Mobile attract all customers with this option and has reacted really fast.
T-Mobile called this program “Jump” and AT&T is naming it “Next”. This program will offer smartphone and tablet upgrades once a year. When Jon Legere, T-Mobile CEO, was announcing this new program, he seemed really serious about it and he mentioned that he will change the whole wireless industry. As it seems, this attracted the attention of every big carrier but AT&T was the first to respond implementing a part of T-Mobile’s no-contract plan. A few days ago, Sprint has cut the prices of its contract plans and offered unlimited data “for life” not letting its customers go to T-Mobile. Some sources are claiming that Verizon Wireless will upgrade its plans soon, too.
The last thing that AT&T wants is to look like a copy-machine implementing T-Mobile’s program into its plans. One day before T-Mobile introduced this program, AT&T has sent a teaser ad for this plan. As we all can see, this plan has a lots of similarities with T-Mobile.
AT&T brought two options for its customers: first option continues its normal 2-year contract and the second option is paying monthly instalment plan for the next 20 months. If this customer decides to put an end to this process, he will need to pay the rest of its instalment fee instead paying early termination fee. I know that this looks the same but I think that AT&T has a vision how to distinguish them. Depending on the device user will choose, he’ll need to pay from $15 to $50 per month. This is the instalment fee and it comes on top of its unchanged service plans that he used to pay until that day.
For example, if you want the iPhone 5 you will need to pay $32.50 per month and the new high-end device from Samsung, the Galaxy S4 will cost you $32 a month. We mentioned earlier that this plan includes tablets, too and if you want to purchase a 16GB iPad Mini version it will cost you $23 a month. You don’t need any additional upfront payments and after a year passes, the user will be able to trade your device for its upgraded model. AT&T has announced that from now on users will be able to subscribe for this “Next” program and all of their exciting customers are also eligible for making their upgrade.
AT&T Next and T-Mobile Jump are both similar plans with few different tweaks. For the Galaxy S4, T-Mobile charges additional upfront fee of $150 with paying $20 per month on top of user’s preferred service plan. This monthly instalment goes for the next 24 months, while AT&T set its limit to 20 months. If you pick T-Mobile’s Jump plan, you will need to pay additional $10 per month to upgrade your smartphone after the first 6 months. This additional fee includes insurance policy.
T-Mobile brought up some interesting plans really quick, leaving its competitors wondering what is happening. As you can see AT&T, Sprint and Verizon are picking up their pace slowly and started making changes after seeing how serious Legere is in its future intentions.