When you jump on to Sprint’s website, you are greeted with that brand new shiny iPhone 6 just waiting for you to click the buy now button. Then you see the brilliant iPhone for Life ad right below it and its $50 a month for unlimited everything price tag. You click the buy it now button, get all signed up and wait for your phone to arrive.
After about a week of playing with that new iPhone you get the first wind of your bill showing up. Welcome to sticker shock. Your prorated month of service will run you about $40 before taxes. The full second month, yes, you pay for that upfront too, is another $50. You then see two charges for your device on there at $20 each. Take that $130 in billings and add about 20% more in taxes and you have a whopper of a payment of $155-160 due for that first bill.
To think that people thought that Sprint was doing them a favor with this one is just plain nuts. The text below is from the promotional materials for the offer. As you can see, it’s not all that great.
Introducing the iPhone for Life Plan. Lease an iPhone 6 with no money due at signing and only $20/mo (for well-qualified lessee). Plus, get a new device every 2 years. Unlimit your iPhone 6 with the Sprint Simply Unlimited Plan: Unlimited data, talk and text on the Sprint network for only $50/mo/line. It’s the best value in wireless.
First off, you won’t own your iPhone when you are done with your 2 year agreement. You keep paying that $20 a month for as long as you are on the Sprint Simply Unlimited Plan. If you choose to upgrade your device, they will keep you on the plan and keep your billing the same. In other words, this is a never ending cellular contract.
Second, you must keep an iPhone active on this account. So, if you lose your phone, you have to buy a new one outright to keep this plan going. You can’t use an old 4s or 5c and keep this rate. If you change your device, you will incur a minimum $10 a month penalty, that could end up costing you more than $35 a month extra.
Finally, you add in the taxes and fees to this deal and see how high it puts that monthly bill. Your “$50” unlimited plan ends up costing you almost $90 a month in some areas after you add in the phone lease cost and the taxes and fees.
Even with the best advertising in the world, this plan falls epically short of the offerings from MVNO’s like Boost Mobile, Virgin Mobile and Red Pocket Mobile. In fact, for $650 outright you can buy that new iPhone 6, activate it on a Red Pocket plan from www.4gfastdata.com and pay as little as $29.99 a month for talk, text and 500MB of 3G data or $59.99 for unlimited talk, text and data. The two year cost difference can be as much as $800.