cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

Go to solution
Highlighted
Journeyman

How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

I'm so sick and tired of calling Sprint every month to complain about this subsidized phone charge that appeared on my account in August of this year. I had 2 phones that I purchased 23 months ago from Best Buy on contract. I didn't have this "Subsidized Phone Charge" appear on my bills until September 2017 after I switched to a new unlimited data plan. This new "Unlimited Freedom - Unlimited Talk, Text & Data" plan apparently comes with a $25 "Subsidized Phone Charge" for every line that's under contract with a subsidized phone. None of my old unlimited Sprint plans required or triggered this Subsidized Phone Charge until I switched to the latest Sprint plan mentioned above at the recommendation of the Sprint representative that helped me swap the phones. It's worth noting that the reason I called Sprint in the first place was to replace one of the subsidized phones I had purchased from Best Buy in October 2015 with a used phone I owned. To make this long story short, I got the additional charges taken care of, but my question is: how do I prevent this "Subsidized Phone Charge" from reappearing when I decide to upgrade to a subsidized phone? I don’t want to pay the additional charge on top of the plan charges and the new phone monthly payment. If I can’t get any assurances from Sprint that this will not happen in the future, I will not be able to upgrade any of my phones, which means that I will have to find another wireless provider.

 

Any useful comments or information will be appreciated.

 

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions
Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

I don't understand the need for the "subsidy charge" and I definitely wasn't informed of this monthly fee when the Sprint Representative recommended I switch to the new unlimited plan. The Sprint Flex lease options are not good options for me, and I will not upgrade any of my devices using a Sprint Flex plan. I have been a Sprint customer for over 6 years, and this subsidy charge is the one thing that annoyed me the most. I have less than two weeks left on the last phone that is still under contract with Sprint and with the holiday smartphone deals that will sure arrive soon, I will have to explore all options....

View solution in original post

9 REPLIES 9
Sprint Social Care

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

WirelessCaller1,

Hey! Thank you for contacting us with this concern, as you may know, one of the reasons why Sprint is not longer offering the 2 year service agreement contract is due to the complaint of customers for the subsidized phone charge applied when the plan is discounted and the contract is also discounted, causing this not be compatible, we cases, for example with apple that if you upgrade with them with a 2 year contract service and the plan with the subsidized phone charge waived, you will not be charged the subsidized phone charge, but in this case since the Unlimited Freedom plan is a discounted plan, you will be charged the subsidized phone charge. However, let's look into the options available we actually have for you regarding this matter. Please check your inbox, I've sent you a private message.


Kryshna
Sprint Social Care
Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

So basically I'm being penalized for switching to a discounted plan while I'm under contract with two subsidized phones. The phones that I've had for 21 -22 months, which are no longer active on my Sprint account. The switch to the discounted plan was made because I was told by a Sprint representative that this new "discounted" plan would not cost me anymore than what I was paying at the time. That was true except for the fact that I wasn't informed that this discounted plan comes with a $25 additional monthly fee for each line with a discounted/subsidized phone. The thing that bothers me the most is that I feel that I was tricked into switching from my old unlimited plan to this new plan to only get slammed with this hidden fee. With the additional $25 monthly fee it is like paying for a new phone monthly installment without actually getting a new phone. So from everything I read it sounds like I will be charged the additional $25 Subsidized Phone Charge if I end up purchasing a discounted phone. The best thing about this Subsidized Phone Charge is that it happened with only 3 months left on my 2-year contract. So I will have to do some serious thinking before I upgrade any phone while I have this, or any other, discounted plan. Aren't all of Sprint's (heavily advertised) unlimited plans available now discounted?? So the bottom line is that unless I pay for the full price for a new phone in full (or payments) or bring my own device, there's no escaping the additional $25 Subsidized Phone Charge!

Sprint Social Care

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

WirelessCaller1, of course you're not being penalized. What happen is that this plan is for non-subsidized devices and when you get a phone with a 2 year agreement, you get the subsidy charge (which we are required to inform to accept your approval and we even send an account notification about it). This charge is removed once the line doesn't have a 2 year contract, no by activating another phone.

 

This change aligns us with other major wireless carriers who no longer offer 2-year pricing. With leasing, the device belongs to Sprint but you can purchase or upgrade to a newer model when your lease is up. You can also have the option to upgrade earlier. I can assure our very best deals are paired with our Sprint Flex options and that we are confident about the value we provide. Sprint.com is the best places to check for the offers designed with you in mind. Make sure you've logged in to see the latest ones.

 


Carlos
Sprint Social Care
Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

I don't understand the need for the "subsidy charge" and I definitely wasn't informed of this monthly fee when the Sprint Representative recommended I switch to the new unlimited plan. The Sprint Flex lease options are not good options for me, and I will not upgrade any of my devices using a Sprint Flex plan. I have been a Sprint customer for over 6 years, and this subsidy charge is the one thing that annoyed me the most. I have less than two weeks left on the last phone that is still under contract with Sprint and with the holiday smartphone deals that will sure arrive soon, I will have to explore all options....

View solution in original post

Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

I bought a new phone at the Apple store when my "5 YEAR" contract with Sprint expired. On that I was paying $20/month - like a fool. That comes to $1,200 for one stinking cell phone, folks. I agreed to upgrade my services which, Apple told me, I had no choice in.  Then Sprint tacked on not one but TWO $25 surcharges the very next month.  When I called service to ask what on earth these charges meant, the person I spoke with, while very polite and kept apologizing, could not explain what the words meant at all.  I asked to speak with someone who did know and she claimed no one was there at the moment but someone could call me back.  No one did.  I called later and after much back and forth I learned that I had been duped into a two year agreement to this "surcharge" mostly because I bought a phone at Apple.  I had traded in my old phone and at first Sprint wanted to charge me the amount of the trade in.  We were able to come to a compromise on that amount.  However, they have stuck with not one but TWO $25 surcharges each month for 2 years.  Nowhere in any document that I received either from Apple or Sprint did they tell me about this whatsoever.  $50 per month over 24 months comes to a whopping $1,200.  I guess they just wanted to extract the same blood as before.  I have never had but ONE cell phone.  I refuse to cough up that amount.  I also refuse to spend inordinate amounts of time each month on my ONE AND ONLY phone arguing with Sprint, negotiating with some so-called Supervisor over costs.  This is totally absurd.  I will be 80 years old this year.  I have been with Sprint since 2001 (going into my 17th year) when I moved back to Pittsburgh.  Consumer Cellular waves its ads in front of me on a daily basis. I live on a fixed income.  I can't wait to tell Sprint what they can do with their $50/month. This is the most incredible SCAM I've ever seen and it's supposed to be legal.  Well, call me crazy, but there is something terribly wrong with things if this sort of stuff is OK.

Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

Good luck with exploring options. Sprint has a way of finding "fine" print you never knew was there and keeping their greedy paws in you. Be wary of their hooks.
Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

Do the math on what is $25. per month for 24 months.  $600.  See!  They wanted you to spend that in the first place -- but over time so they also get interest.  Sprint is so clever and so greedy they need to be called out on this nonsense.

Journeyman

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

Believe it or not, Sprint representatives I spoke with regarding this charge many times over a 3 month period confirmed what you said. The problem is that this unannounced and unexpected fee that Sprint is charging only serves to alienate and upset long time customers. Customers like me who now have to deal with higher monthly fee for being on a mediocre network and have to deal with substandard service to boot. I'm sure that Sprint spends more than $25 per customer per month on new customer acquisition, but they have no clue how to keep their existing (a.k.a. loyal) customers satisfied. As I said before, this Subsidized Phone Charge is like adding insult to injury. So how long would an existing customer put up with this situation and remain a “loyal” Sprint customer?

GrandMaster

Re: How do I avoid Subsidized Phone Charges when upgrading

you can always pay the "Line access fee" of $40 while in a lease with Verizon? their subsidized fee is called a line access charge by the way.
*********************************************************
I like many others come onto this site for assistance and to help others. Marking a reply as helpful or correct helps others with like issues when they try to search the site for assistance. I do not work for Sprint and my suggestions and or opinions are my own. *************************************************************************************************************
Community News

This is a PUBLIC ARCHIVE board, all artciles are read only.

Please click here to search the Active Community.