iPhone 3GS Frequently Asked Questions
Pricing and Upgrading
AT&T, like most U.S. carriers, offers a variety of phones that we sell below our actual cost when customers agree to sign service agreements. In general, the more a customer spends with us, the quicker they become eligible for a price break on a new device. For example, iPhone customers who spend more than $99 a month per line with us generally are eligible for an upgrade between 12 and 18 months into their contract.
New and Qualified Customers
“New and qualified” iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G pricing is available to all new AT&T customers and existing AT&T customers who have fulfilled their previous agreement and sign a new two-year service agreement.
We’re now pleased to offer our iPhone 3G customers who are upgrade eligible in July, August or September 2009 our best upgrade pricing, beginning Thursday, June 18.
If you’re one of the many customers who will benefit from this change, please note that our upgrade eligibility Web site will reflect this change on Thursday, June 18. You may pre-order online at www.att.com/iPhone, and your iPhone 3GS will arrive in 7 – 14 days from the time you place your order. Or we invite you to come to our stores beginning Friday, June 19, during normal store hours, although please be aware that customer demand may exceed supply in some of our stores.
For existing AT&T customers who have not yet fulfilled their existing agreement, AT&T offers a special program exclusively for iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G: early upgrade pricing. This gives customers who do not yet qualify for a upgrade-likely because they received a subsidized device within the last year or two-the opportunity to upgrade at a special price that's still well below AT&T's actual cost.
Customers who wish to purchase an iPhone 3GS or iPhone 3G without signing a new two-year agreement may do so at the no-commitment price.
|iPhone 3GS||iPhone 3G|
|New and Qualified Customers||$199 (16 GB)
$299 (32 GB)
|$99 (8 GB)
$149 (16 GB)
|Early Upgrade||$399 (16 GB)
$499 (32 GB)
|$299 (8 GB)
$349 (16 GB)
|No Commitment||$599 (16 GB)
$699 (32 GB)
|$499 (8 GB)
$549 (16 GB)
Q. How do I know if I'm eligible for an upgrade?
A. Customers can check their eligibility at www.att.com/iPhone or by visiting any of our company-owned retail stores. If you're not currently eligible, we'll provide you with the date when you may become eligible. You also can call *NEW# (*639#) from your AT&T handset and receive a text with information about your upgrade eligibility.
Even if you're not yet eligible, you still have a number of choices:
- Wait until you are eligible
- Pay the early-upgrade price for iPhone 3GS
- Purchase iPhone 3GS at the no-commitment price
- Continue to use your current iPhone 3G and take advantage of the free upgrade to the new 3.0 software. Learn more by visiting http://www.apple.com/hotnews/
Q. What if I benefit from this change - but have already pre-ordered?
A. If you've pre-ordered from one of our stores, when you pick up your device on or after June 19, we will be able to adjust your account, if you qualify. If you pre-ordered online, once you receive your device at home (or other designated address), AT&T will send you an email and issue you a credit, if you qualify.
If you pre-ordered an iPhone 3GS through Apple's online store, your upgrade eligibility will be reassessed based on AT&T's new upgrade policy for iPhone 3G owners. If you are eligible for the lower price, Apple will issue you a credit for the difference as applicable.
Q. If I qualify for this change, can I come on Friday at 7 a.m. when your stores open early for customers who pre-ordered?
A. No. You can come during regular store hours on June 19, though we will have limited supplies on-hand. We encourage all customers to pre-order online at www.att.com/iPhone for the most certainty and convenience.
Q. Does this change only apply to iPhone 3G customers who spend $99 or more per month?
A. In most cases, yes. iPhone customers who spend more than $99 a month per line with us generally are eligible for an upgrade between 12 and 18 months. In general, the more a customer spends with us, the less time they have to wait to get another new device.
Q. What about customers who bought in July, August, or September 2008 but don't spend over $99 a month?
A. We value the business of all our customers. Getting a new subsidized device is based on several factors including monthly recurring charges and having an account in good financial standing. In general, the more you spend with us, the less time you have to wait to get another device. This is a very fair system. That said, we do offer early upgrade pricing only for iPhone for those customers who don't want to wait.
Q. Why don't current iPhone and iPhone 3G customers qualify for "new and qualified customer" pricing for iPhone 3GS?
A. When the original iPhone was introduced, no discounts were available. Customers paid full price-up to $599 for the 8GB model. Those customers did not receive a subsidy, so they were eligible for the discounted pricing a year later for iPhone 3G.
Many iPhone 3G customers will soon be eligible for new and qualified customer pricing. You can check your status at www.att.com/iPhone and we'll give you the date you may qualify.
Q. How can I purchase an early upgrade?
A. You can do this online at www.att.com/iPhone, or you can visit a local company-owned AT&T store and one of our representatives can help you.
Pre-ordering and Inventory
Q. Will all iPhone 3GS models be equally available or will some models be hard to come by?
A. It's hard to predict. However, customers can avoid lines on June 19 by pre-ordering iPhone 3GS at www.att.com/iPhone or at one of our company-owned AT&T stores.
Q. Will AT&T have more inventory of the iPhone 3GS than other non-AT&T stores?
A. We can't speak for inventory at other stores. If you are interested in iPhone 3GS, we highly encourage you to pre-order at www.att.com/iPhone or visit one of our AT&T stores.
Q. Why should I pre-order?
A. For customers who pre-order at www.att.com/iPhone, their device will be shipped to their home (or designated address) to arrive on or after June 19. They can then synch it to iTunes to activate.
For customers who pre-order through a store, we'll notify them via e-mail when their device is ready to pickup. On June 19, we'll open our stores early, at 7:00 a.m. local time, for those who pre-ordered through an AT&T store and received a notification that their device is ready.
For customers who visit a store on the 19th to place their order, they'll be admitted to the store beginning at normal opening time. We'll work on a first-come, first-served basis.
Q. Can I pre-order iPhone 3GS on an individual plan, pick it up on June 19 then buy a second iPhone 3GS on June 19 and move to a FamilyTalk plan?
A. Yes, you can, as long as we have stock available.
Q. My kids and I are on a FamilyTalk plan. I'm not eligible for an upgrade for iPhone 3GS but one of my kids is upgrade ready. Can I swap lines and take his upgrade eligibility on the 19th? Will I need to start a new two-year service agreement?
A. Yes, you can rearrange your account to take advantage of your child's upgrade eligibility - and yes, you will need to sign a new two-year service agreement.
Q. If I'm switching from a competitor, what do I need to do?
A. Check out our iReady fact sheet for specifics on pre-ordering as a new AT&T customer.
Q. Will AT&T offer MMS and tethering?
A. Later this summer, as part of the 3.0 software, AT&T will make multimedia messaging (MMS) available at no extra cost to customers with a text messaging bundle. And, in the future, AT&T will offer tethering capability for iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.
Q. What are the new features of iPhone 3GS?
A. Read about iPhone 3GS in Apple's announcement here: http://www.apple.com/hotnews/
Q. It sounds like I don't need a contract to buy iPhone 3GS. Can I buy it and use it on another carrier?
A. We do offer no-commitment pricing, however, iPhones sold in the United States are configured to work only with the wireless services provided by AT&T. Here's the no-commitment pricing for both devices:
- iPhone 3GS (16 GB): $599
- iPhone 3GS (32 GB): $699
- iPhone 3G (8 GB): $499
- iPhone 3G (16 GB): $549 (while supplies last)