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AT&T Wants Device Subsidies to Be As Low As Possible

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May 17, 2012, 12:07 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega told investors at the JPMorgan Global Technology, Media and Telecom Conference today that the company is doing what it can to offer devices with low subsidies. "We have to watch subsidies and make sure that we bring devices to market that customers love and will keep and have low subsidies," he said. In the U.S., wireless network operators often subsidize the cost of handsets for customers who sign new contracts. Customers are then able to afford a decent device, and the carrier recoups the subsidy over the life of the contract. de la Vega cited the Nokia Lumia 900 and HTC One X as good examples of devices with low subsidy points. "These are great devices that I think customers will like," de la Vega said. The full retail price of the Lumia 900, for example, is $449. AT&T sells it for $99, meaning it subsidizes $350 of the device cost. The iPhone 4S, however, costs $649 at full retail (16GB version). AT&T sells it for $199, meaning it subsidizes $450 of the device cost. Keeping device subsidies low will help AT&T reduce its margins and other costs. de la Vega also reiterated that the company is working to offer shared data plans later this year, which he believes will help increase sales of tablets.

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May 17, 2012, 3:06 PM

Why not end subsidies?

I know the consumers would revolt but just offering unlocked, unsubsidized devices would allow the carriers to focus on their networks. I don't have to buy a different TV if i want to switch between cable or satellite or fios.Let device manufactures make devices and allow the customer to choose the device and the network.
That will never happen. It makes too much sence, and it would be the right thing to do - which means it will never happen. 😡
I read on Android Central that paying
full-retail will be the only way to keep
unlimited LTE data on Vzn going
forward after this family share data plan
is announced.

So better set a certain amount aside each month
for that Jelleybean Nexus s...
Elimination of subsidies would keep cell phones out of the lower income peoples hands I gues.
Was that the intent?

If you don't want a subsidy, pay full retail.
At that point you have no cotract and as far as I know, most carriers will unlock a c...
Many people today don't remember it but for many, many years there was a landline phone subsidy. When you set up phone service in your home or office, you got the phone directly from the phone company, and the phone was owned by the phone company and...

May 17, 2012, 1:32 PM

In Other News...

...McDonald's wants to put as little meat as possible on the Big Mac and still be able to call it a burger.
Where's the beef?
I don't know where you live, but if there is a "5 Guys" near you, check it out. You'll never go to McDogfood again.
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