Verizon Goes Contractless

Big news from the country’s biggest wireless provider:

The carrier is ditching its service contracts, which means that customers won’t be able to buy discounted smartphones with two-year agreements. Instead, you pay for your service month to month and pay your phone off in monthly installments.

It’s radical for Verizon, but nothing new in the industry. T-Mobile ditched service contracts in 2013, and international wireless carriers almost never have contracts.

But Verizon is also the largest carrier in the US, and when it makes such a radical change, it has the power to influence the entire industry.


If AT&T doesn’t follow suit, I may just switch to Verizon.

The two-year contract on my iPhone ends in a couple of months, and for the first time since 2009, the next iPhone won’t be an automatic upgrade for me. I’m one of those weirdos who thinks his phone should be small, rather than the approximate size and shape of a toaster pastry.

Anyway, since Apple seems unlikely to bring the 4″ screen size back this year, I might hang on to my 5S for an unprecedented third year, and see what they come out with in 2016. If there’s a smaller size, great. If not, I’ll succumb to market forces and buy a 4.7″ or larger screen just like everybody else.

But if I keep my phone an extra year, I’ll still be paying AT&T for the phone that’s already paid off — like continuing to make your monthly mortgage payments to your S&L after the house is paid for.


That doesn’t seem like a very good deal, does it?


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