The iPhone launches in 16 days, and I wanted to make sure that I had an AT&T account setup, so I could walk into an Apple store and simply buy the iPhone. Previously, when I went into the AT&T (former Cingular) store, they said I would need a $750 deposit to activate service. I formerly wrote how the iPhone would end up costing me $1349 ($750 deposit + $599 iPhone).
Speaking to another writer over at BGR, he told me he got a BlackBerry Curve for $100 from AT&T by showing them the Amazon page, which sells the phone for $99.99. He also told me that the reps work on commission, so extra data plans, sms plans, and accessories help build commission. I also found the Option GT Max 3.6 Express card wireless modem card for $0.01….practically free.
I printed out these two Amazon pages, and headed to the AT&T store, knowing full well I would have to pay a $750 deposit. I looked on eBay and the prices for unlocked Curves are around $400+. I figured it would be a good investment to buy it for $99.99, use it till the iPhone comes out and turn around and sell it. I also could keep it if I didn’t like the iPhone so it was a win/win for me, as AT&T has a 30 day return policy.
I walk in and tell the sales guy that I want the Curve, I also tell him that I want it at the Amazon price (hand him the paper, but accidentally include the modem paper too) and tell him I will buy any add-ons that will help his commission. He tells me that isn’t necessary, and that he wants me to get what is right for my needs. He sees the modem paperwork, and says did you want this too?
This is my dilema, it is a FREE modem, but in the back of my mind I know that it will be $750 for EACH line of service I activate. I tell him that I would but I don’t want to have to pay a deposit on each line. He asks for my info, types it all in, and says, “There is no deposit required.” WHAT?!?!?!!?!?!
I go from having to pay $1,500 in deposits if I wanted both of these devices, to NOTHING?!?!?! I couldn’t believe it, but wasn’t about to question it. He said he could get me both the BlackBerry Curve and the modem for $100 out the door.
He comes back with them, activates them, and I pay my $100 and walk out with both devices in hand. AMAZING. I don’t care what other people have to say about AT&T/Cingular’s customer service….if you ask me they are top notch.
So now I’ve got my old T-mobile equipment that I will be listing on eBay within the next few days, along with a brand new 30 gig white iPod. I want to say that I wish I didn’t have to leave T-Mobile, as they have been the best phone providers, and I’ve been with them for nearly 4 years.
Once I get a few pictures taken, I will show the Curve and the story behind getting the Option GT Max 3.6 Express working in OS X.
P.S. There are countless stories online saying that Apple and AT&T have worked out an agreement, that even if you aren’t “eligible” for an upgrade phone price, that new and existing customers all get the same price for the iPhone….meaning I will be camping out Thursday the 28th at my local Apple store waiting for my 8 gig iPhone.