Verizon $30 Upgrade Fee Arrives April 22

Posted by at 10:21 am on April 11, 2012

Verizon underscored competitive problems in the US cellular marketplace on Wednesday by instituting a $30 device upgrade fee. Starting April 22, customers will have to pay the premium as existing subscribers if they want to get a device subsidized on a two-year plan. Spokeswoman Brenda Raney claimed the fee was needed to keep providing “level of service and support they have come to expect.”

Already anticipating a hostile reaction, Raney added that the fee was “not unique” to Verizon and offered a device trade-in program as potential compensation.

The hike follows just two months after AT&T doubled upgrade fees and puts Verizon’s new fee just $6 lower than that of its main challenger. In February, AT&T argued that the emphasis on smartphones meant device prices were going up and that it needed the higher fees to compensate. Verizon’s own internal reasoning may be similar.

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