I'll be honest, Andy...I'm very sympathetic to your plight. I have a Google Nexus X that was already second-tier when I bought it a little over a year-and-a-half ago, and after two software upgrades, it runs at half-speed and the battery dies within hours. I'd very much like to upgrade to an iPhone 5, but have to wait until May. If I also was grandfathered in under the new 20-month rule, I could have upgraded yesterday.
Now, I've been a continuous customer for over 10 years. And I think if a phone becomes near-useless while under the auspices of the 2-year contract, Sprint should take on some responsibiity for that (especially since I pay the additonal $8 a month in insurance). It's not damaged. It just can't run Jelly Bean the way it ran Gingerbread, and the bloatware clogs up my memory. But that's a whole other conversation.
As for the contract, though, I do see their point. We sign a 2-year commitment, and they let us upgrade just before its up. And yes, the analogy to the car is completely off-base: This is a contract, not paying off a loan, a contract I can break at any time. I can't just stop paying a loan when I want to switch cars.
But if they let you go 22 days early, why not me 59 days early? And why not another dude 75 days early? The "contract" doesn't have to be fair or equitable, but it does have to be spelled out and followed, and that's what they're doing. Yes, it would be nice for them to want to keep you as a customer and give you a break, but this isn't your neighbor running a small business on the corner...this is corporate America and you are just a number to them. They can run their numbers and figure if they let you move up the contract even by 22 days, they potentially lose 22 days at the end of the new contract, and that's maybe $80. Multiply that by every customer they have, and you see why they see that as a threat and something they can't afford to make exceptions with.
The Upgrade Now fee allows you to upgrade before your established eligibility date. A Sprint Owned Retail Store will be able to upgrade your phone with the Upgrade Now fee and Buyback of your current device. To locate a Sprint owned store, go to www.sprintstorelocator.com and make sure to go to a Sprint store, not a Sprint Store By (give store example).
Social Care Team
They already do this. The fee is based on how far you are from your upgrade.
Which is why it might be $50 to upgrade one line $125 to upgrade another line early, and $175 for another.
It's not like were asking to upgrade a month or so early for free, I wouldn't even mind paying extra (either a set fee, or a fee based on a per day basis from the contract ending)... that seems fair...
It is smart business sense to stick to contractual obligations. If every Sprint customer in the company wanted to upgrade one month early now, then at the end of this contract one month early, it's a continued snowball affect. You signed a binding contract with clearly defined dates, a contract that can be upheld in a court of law, and you think that you'll be doing Sprint a service by upgrading your contract so it's a fair trade. I'm sure every Tom, Dick, and Jane out there would like the benefits of Sprint On Demand as it seems you are wanting.
I've been with Sprint for 10 years and had a few problems of my own, but you're creating your own problems and poor relationship with Sprint at this point.
This policy makes absolutely no sense (currently have the same thing going on and I want to upgrade 3 lines and add a fourth).
The crazy/frustrating part is that when I port these lines to AT&T I will get a call from customer service asking if there is anything they can do for me to come back and get the $150 credited back (just sucks to tie up the funds waiting for AT&T refund). Doesn't make sense, that's the game… but this is SPRINT and NOT ZAPPOS.
No, knife56, they shouldn't "ignore" their policies, but they should take a look and see if the justifications for the policies make sense. Have you ever worked in customer service? Banks, for instance, will sometimes refund NSF or late fees, on a limited basis, even though the customer is "wrong" because it makes business sense to do so.
Again, please explain to me how, with this specific situation regarding - (a) the discount investment at stake with this phone, initially, (b) the potential earlier increased revenue, and (c) the amount of time before the actual date that is being requested.
Sprint makes money from people purchasing their plans. In this case, they have put me in a situation where it is financially neutral for me to drop my contract 5 months early, or to stay with them and try to get a phone 21 days early. Is that a smart business policy, in your mind? What, exactly do I owe Sprint that considering dropping them over this is somehow "unreasonable?" What, exactly, have they done to deserve special loyalty from me? Again, you seem to be making it about right or wrong. I'm talking about the cold-blooded, objective business case. Both on their side, and on mine.
No, KiKi, that analogy doesn't fit, because the amount of "financing" offered different phones isn't the same. If you have a $100 phone that is offered for free with a 2 year agreement, it's not the same "write off" if you get a $250 phone for $50 dollars with a two year agreement, using the exact same phone plan. For instance, right now, getting the exact same service plan, if I was a new customer, I'd pay exactly the same $0 for a phone where Sprint eats $279.99, or $209.99.
Are you trying to claim that, after 19 months and 7 days of the exact same amount of payments from two different customers, Sprint would still not have recovered their full $209.99 or their $279.99, but would have recovered both the $209.99 and the $279.99 just 21 days later? The math doesn't add up.
If it's built into the business model that the $280 investment is recouped after 20 months ($14 per month), how is it that the $210 investment, under the exact same plan costs, is not recouped after 15?
Again, I have to point out that I'm talking about my very specific situation, and you're trotting out hypothetical generalizations. If my plan cost me more over time if I opted for a phone where Sprint eats a higher cost, that would make since, but that's not the case. It doesn't fit.
I can see your frustration. Let me try to word it in another way:
You purchased a car. You are coming close to the end of your 5 yr financing and your starter goes. You go to trade your car in even though you still have payments left on your financing agreement. Even though your car has little to no trade in value because model you purchased is now at end of life, what you owe on that car is worked into your new financing agreement for a new car. It isn't written off because the company has to make up for the loss they will receive for you to acquire a newer model.
It is the same as the early upgrade fee.
Sprint Social Care
So everytime a customer makes a threat to cancel, Sprint should just ignore the policies they have in place and give the customer whatever they want to appease them? That doesn't make business sense either and no profitbale business is run that way. Sprint does try to work with customers to get them early upgrades, hence them offering you the $50 promotion to upgrade early. You're taking an: it's my way or the highway approach. That's the inflexibility on your part. Inflexibility on Sprint's part would be outright refusal to work with you at all.
It's not win-win. How are you determining whether or not sprint managed to already recoup the discount they gave you on your phone? There's no way you could possible know this as you don't have enough information to make that determination.
I get being upset that your upgrade date isn't for another month but be reasonable about it. Why don't you look into doing things like selling your current phone privately to recoup some of that $50 early upgrade fee?
As for the other part of your post, the information the first person was given isn't fundamentally dishonest. They asked if they had an early upgrade option available, the sprint rep suggested checking with a store. Sprint does offer early upgrades, at a cost, but the amount it'd cost this customer (if it's available) can't be confirmed without looking at his account. Which is why he recommended going to a sprint store (the early upgrade offer sprint has is a corporate store promotion).
This isn't some sort of moral crusade, A_R_A, I'm talking about making sense from a business sense.
I'm not asking for a concession where all the benefits accrue to me. I currently do not have any kind of a data plan. If I get smartphones, I will have to upgrade to an unlimited family data plan.
Sprint makes more money by transferring me to a more expensive data plan sooner. I benefit by being able to upgrade a few days earlier and not having to keep using a phone that has a non-functioning camera. It's a win-win. I'm not asking that they upgrade my phone and services and am not willing to pay more in the service upgrade. So where's the inflexibility on my part?
If they said "it doesn't make business sense, but that's the way it is, because, like A_R_A we're willing to lose money to make a point," then they should just say so.
I'm not saying I'm going to take my business elsewhere just because they said no, but it makes logical business sense for me to do so.
If I want a smartphone and data plan upgrade now, Sprint wants to charge me $50 to do so. I can reward them with the $50 AND all my upgraded service purchases for the next two years, or I can pay the $50, and their competitors get all the additional business for at least the next two years. Which is the smarter way for a customer who disagrees with how they've been handled?
As I pointed out, the discount on the phone I had was one of the smallest ones out there, so it's not like they haven't recouped that discount, nor would it lose money for them.
As I pointed out, my irritation isn't the answer "no," it's the insulting attempts to pretend that the explanations given make business sense. It's also with the fundamentally dishonest answer given to the person starting this thread, where they pretend like there is a possibility that an early upgrade might be available.
You missed the point, entirely.