With the other three major carriers all announcing early upgrade options (T-Mobile JUMP!, AT&T NEXT and Verizon Edge) over the Summer, it was only a matter of time before Sprint got in on the action. It looks like that time is now.
CNET has obtained information on the Sprint offering, which is apparently slated to go live on September 20. While I still consider all of the early upgrade plans to be of somewhat questionable value, this certainly looks like it will slide into the “not horrible” category that previously was home only to T-Mobile JUMP!.
If the leaked details prove accurate, the One Up program will allow you to walk out with a phone for no money down, and as with the others, you pay off the device over 24 months (in the example below a $649.99 device comes out to $27 a month over 24 months). Now like T-Mobile, the Sprint plan gives you a discounted monthly rate plan, $15 to be exact, bringing the normal $80 a month unlimited plan down to $65. So total out of pocket each month will be $92 plus taxes and fees. Sprint has a handy chart to show you the clear superiority of their plan below.
After a year you can turn your device back in and pay the same $88 out of pocket that you did the first year to get whatever the new hotness is and continue on with the plan.
At least based on what we’ve seen so far, there doesn’t appear to be an insurance component built into One Up as there is with JUMP!. That may make the slightly higher cost of JUMP! worthwhile for those of you with accident prone devices. JUMP! also allows for a 6 month upgrade path rather than just yearly, which may better meet the needs of the real upgrade diehards.
Again the CNET report has Sprint One Up pegged for a September 20 launch or unveiling, so by the end of the week we should have all the details.
Are any of you using one of the carriers early upgrade programs currently? If not, does the Sprint offering look like something that might change your opinion?