The new iPhone 3G S sounds great. It’s not a huge update to the iPhone, but it packs a few very important things: More speed, more storage more battery and a better camera that can do video. It’s a no-brainer to upgrade to it, just as many did from the original iPhone to the iPhone 3G last year, right? Wrong.
While current iPhone owners last year got to upgrade to the iPhone 3G for the fully subsidized $199 and $299 prices, the same will not be true this year. Instead, current iPhone 3G owners only 1 year into their 2 year contracts, will have to pay $399 and $499 to upgrade. The reason for this is simple: AT&T subsidizes the phone down to $199 based on a 2-year payment agreement with the customer. If you only paid one year of that contract, AT&T would have to eat those costs. So instead it’s putting that cost back into this new phone. It didn’t do that last year, because the original iPhone wasn’t subsidized. It makes sense, but here’s why that’s a bad idea. [Read more…]