The Complete Guide to What U.S. Users Will Pay for iPhone 4 | iLounge Article


The Complete Guide to What U.S. Users Will Pay for iPhone 4

Since yesterday’s announcement of AT&T’s “generous” upgrade deal on the iPhone 4, many U.S.-based iLounge readers have expressed confusion over whether or not they would be eligible for the base $199 for 16GB and $299 for 32GB pricing. So we’ve put together this handy guide that will take you through the process of finding out your upgrade eligibility, and how to translate the response into real world iPhone 4 prices.

Step 1: If you’re an AT&T customer, use the AT&T calling code to get a free text message on eligibility.

While it is possible to go to AT&T’s wireless website, log in, and click on a particular link in order to learn your upgrade status, it’s way easier to simply dial *639# from your AT&T phone. Placing this call lets the company know that you’d like to know your upgrade eligibility status, which it returns in a text message.

Step 1a: For non-AT&T customers:

You’ll be eligible for the $199/$299 pricing. You can skip Step 2.

Step 2: Wait for the text message from AT&T.

If you followed Step 1, you should soon be receiving a text from AT&T which will tell you your upgrade eligibility status. If your message looks like this:

Then you’ll be able to purchase the iPhone 4 at the $199/$299 price points with a new two-year agreement. This means that your contract will be restarted on the day of iPhone 4 activation with a new two-year commitment, and AT&T’s new, higher early termination fee of $325.

If your message looks like this:


Then you won’t be eligible for the $199/$299 pricing, but can take advantage of the “early upgrade” pricing of $399 for the 16GB model and $499 for 32GB model, although you’ll still have to sign another two-year agreement, with the ETF.

Step 3 (Optional): Buy off-contract. No matter what your upgrade eligibility status may be, if you’d like to buy an iPhone 4 from AT&T but don’t want to sign a contract at all, you can pay what’s known as “no commitment” pricing, which is $599 for the 16GB model and $699 for the 32GB model. Keep in mind that even with the no commitment option, your unit will still be carrier-locked to AT&T.

Note: Pricing for the iPhone 4 in France, Germany, the U.K., and Japan has yet to be announced.

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So if I am one year into a 2 year contract and I upgrade and

“This means that your contract will be restarted on the day of iPhone 4 activation with a new two-year commitment, and AT&T’s new, higher early termination fee of $375.”

Does that my old 2 year contract is ripped up and a new 2 year starts, or am I now stuck at AT&T for 3 years unless I pay an ETF?

Posted by Jeff on June 8, 2010 at 10:21 AM (CDT)


What about multiple iPhones on a family plan? According to this article, it appears that AT&T will give out a subsidy to each iPhone user (both users are listed as eligible on AT&T’s website), but does AT&T really give out more than one subsidy on a single contract?

Posted by Muero on June 8, 2010 at 11:50 AM (CDT)


Another possible response that needs to be added:

“Text from 108 We’re sorry.  Requested information is currently unavailable.  Please try again later.”


Posted by jon on June 8, 2010 at 12:04 PM (CDT)


We have a two-phone family plan, and both got iPhone 3GSs shortly after launch last year. The primary account holder gets the “valued customer” $18 early upgrade message, but I get:

“You may select equipment at our full retail pricing. An upgrade may be available on 03/03/2011”—Not sure where that date is coming from, because the last time I renewed my contract must have been last summer.

Posted by Mark in Portland on June 8, 2010 at 12:24 PM (CDT)


So I have 2 phones in our plan. My wife’s and mine. We both tried the *639# and both got different responses. I got the 1st one on the list and my wife got the no discount until March of 2011. We both got the phones the same day in July of last year. Does att only subsidize one of the phones in our family plan?

Posted by Rowald Rull on June 8, 2010 at 2:56 PM (CDT)


Can someone from iLounge answer #5 above?  Would love to know the answer to that one as well. Thanks.

Posted by Damon on June 8, 2010 at 6:33 PM (CDT)


#1: It should mean “new two year starts” as opposed to “3 years.”

#2: See below, but depending on the dates of purchase and other factors, multiple phones may be eligible for upgrade at the same or different times.

#4: See below.

#5: Contact AT&T, but it looks like one of you was moved up early as a “generous” bonus for your two-phone plan, and the other was not.

We’re hearing occasional stories of people who shouldn’t be under contract at all being told no discounted price, as well. Contact AT&T if you either brought your own iPhone to your current service plan, or bought a 3G model prior to the launch of 3GS last year and have not been offered an upgrade.

Posted by Jeremy Horwitz on June 8, 2010 at 7:55 PM (CDT)


Me and my friend bought our iPhone 3gs from Apple on the release date in June 2009 with new 2 year contracts. As of right now, we’re 1 year into our contracts.  When we both check our upgrade eligibility, he’s eligible NOW for iPhone 4 and I’m not until Feb. 2011, which is 20 months into my contract.  Isn’t that some sort of discrimination???  Can they do that?

Posted by Russell Sedam on June 13, 2010 at 3:48 AM (CDT)

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