Thanks to T-Mobile, there have been a lot of changes in the mobile industry as of late. The Magenta Carrier really started making waves a few years ago, and while the water may have quieted down more recently, there’s no denying that T-Mobile made change happen in an industry that always seemed ridiculously slow in this area not too long ago.
Phone subsidies have been a thing in the United States for a long time. Even while other major countries were doing things differently, the U.S.-based carriers refused to pay any attention. Or enact any changes, anyway. Instead, we got to hang onto the subsidies, paying only $200 or less to get our hands on a new phone, and attaching ourselves to the carrier for two years in the process.
The incentive for these subsidies is right there, of course. These devices can cost almost $1,000 (depending on the model), so only paying a fraction of that, even if it means making AT&T, or Verizon, Sprint, or T-Mobile the “old ball and chain” for awhile is worth it. The fees, whether hidden or not, were always there for the subscriber’s consideration, but paying the fewest amount of dollars to get what you want is a hard habit to break.
But, here we are, with AT&T moving away from the two-year subsidy altogether, it seems. The Big Blue carrier has already axed the option at Apple Stores for customers wanting to get their hands on an iPhone, and word on the street suggests AT&T will phase out the option completely sometime soon down the road.
If AT&T is considering this, then it stands to reason that the other carriers are, too.
The alternative at this point is to, as it always has been, simply buy the phone you want off-contract completely, which means paying that high price tag, but foregoing any kind of agreement. Or, and this is what the carriers would much rather you go with, you can pay a certain amount every month towards the total cost of the phone.
These monthly installment plans are still relatively new for the carriers, but apparently they’re catching on like wildfire.
The moment I heard that AT&T was starting to ween itself, and its subscribers, off two-year agreements, I couldn’t help but wonder: How many people out there are still using them, and want to continue using them into the future? Who doesn’t want to pay a monthly installment towards a phone that costs upwards of $600 or more? Who are the people out there that want that subsidy, two-year agreement and all?
So I had to ask. I’m genuinely curious to know if there’s anyone out there that simply refuses to give up their contract, and actually plans on renewing that two-year agreement when their current contract runs out.
So let me know!