Since T-Mobile began its Simple Choice plans, customers of other carriers have been clamoring for similar no contract plans. One Verizon customer, Mike Beauchamp of Wichita, Kansas, decided to go further and started an online petition on Change.org. As of this posting, it’s up to 74,369 supporters and rising. The text of the petition implores Verizon to allow a contract free plan for their customers and cites technological advancements and changing patterns in phone usage:
“Let’s face it; phones aren’t really phones anymore. They’re data devices for accessing the Internet and everything connected to it, that happen to also make calls. Carriers (including Verizon) have already given up trying to charge for “minutes” — a shift towards that verifies this trend. Instead, they’ve created a business model where most of their revenue comes from data.
So why would anyone want to be tied into a contract for two years? The major handset manufacturers all release updated, newer, faster, more powerful devices much more frequently. Apple and Samsung, the two dominant players in mobile, release a new flagship phone every year like clockwork. Most other OEMs do, as well.”
The petition goes on to mention Google’s selling of their Nexus phones directly, and T-Mobile’s new no contract plans as examples of business models that are working without contracts. It closes with an appeal for customers to sign, noting that Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam ” has already expressed his willingness to do away with them [contracts] if consumers speak loud enough about it.”
So what do you think? Deep discounts on devices for the promise of 2 years has long been the standard with all carriers, but a contract free future could be around the corner. Would you rather pay full price for your phones with the freedom to come and go as you please, or would you rather score great gear on the cheap every 2 years?