A tipster dropped us a note to alert of us some upcoming changes to Verizon’s upgrade and warranty policies that could indicate the impending arrival of the Verizon iPhone. According to our source, Verizon may be ending its New Every Two program effective January 16th. The New Every Two program is available to customers with a minimum monthly calling plan of $34.99 and have fulfilled 20 months of a two-year contract.
The program offers a $30 or $50 discount on a new phone when you sign a two-year renewal. Our source claims that contracts signed after this January 16th date will no longer be eligible for the New Every Two promotion and existing customers who become eligible for the New Every Two discount will have six months to take advantage of the promotion or lose their discount.
Verizon is also reportedly ending its annual upgrade option, according to the tipster. This annual upgrade options is a promotion that lets customers upgrade at promotional prices after they have fulfilled one year of a two-year contract. Customers eligible for this early upgrade must sign up for My Verizon and have a minimum calling plan of $49.99. According to our source, Verizon will not replace either of these promotions. Once these two upgrade deals are gone, all customers must serve out 20 months of a two-year contract before they are eligible to upgrade at promotional prices. No exceptions and no extra discounts will apply.
Our source also claims that Verizon is changing its warranty program. Currently, managers could, at their discretion, overlook any physical damage and swap out one handset model for another (ie, a defective DROID 2 for a DROID X). Starting next month, customers may be charged from $150 to $300 if the defective handset includes physical damage such as external scratches when it reached the warehouse. The fee assessed to the customer is dependent on the type of handset returned for warranty purposes.
Why all these changes and why now? Well, our source assumes these changes are being made to help Verizon prepare for the launch of the CDMA iPhone. Once the iPhone lands, Verizon will have strict upgrade policies in place so customers will not be able to upgrade early or receive an extra discount for serving out their contract. The warranty changes are also being made to prevent folks from swapping out handsets with the hope of receiving an iPhone or swapping out an iPhone needlessly due to a problem like scratches on the semi-delicate back glass face. None of this confirmed but it comes from a reliable source and it does sounds reasonable, no?