AT&T Open Letter: iPhone 3GS Upgrade Eligibility Update

AT&TAT&T has changed it pricing for the iPhone 3GS for some customers. Please read the following press release for more info. Also, call *639# on your iPhone and you will get a text message reply with eligibility info. This info may not be accurate until tomorrow or Friday. Here’s what mine said as of today, Wednesday:


An Update for our Customers
Some customers have had questions about our plans and policies for iPhone 3GS, and we’d like to provide you with answers. We’d also like to announce a change to the date when some iPhone customers are eligible for our best upgrade pricing to iPhone 3GS.

Importantly, we want our customers to better understand our wireless device upgrade program. Like most U.S. carriers, we offer 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.

We also currently offer early upgrade pricing only for iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.

All of that said, we’ve been listening to our customers. And since many of our iPhone 3G customers are early adopters and literally weeks shy of being upgrade eligible due to iPhone 3GS launching 11 months after iPhone 3G, we’re extending the window of upgrade eligibility for a limited time.

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 tools will reflect this change on Thursday, June 18.

We invite you to come to our stores beginning Friday during normal store hours, although please be aware that customer demand may exceed supply in some of our stores. You may also preorder online on June 18 at, and your iPhone 3GS will arrive in 7 — 14 days. Or you can purchase iPhone 3GS at Apple’s retail and online stores, as well as at other popular retailers.

If you’re one of the customers who benefits from this change, and you’ve already preordered from an AT&T store, we’ll adjust the price of the device when you pick it up. If you benefit from the change and you pre-ordered from AT&T online, we’ll send you an e-mail and issue you a credit.

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.

So, what if you still aren’t eligible for our best upgrade pricing and you still want iPhone 3GS now? You do have options:

* You may qualify for the iPhone 3GS early upgrade price of $399 (16GB) or $499 (32GB).
* You can pay full retail — and not have to sign a 2-year contract — at $599 (16GB) or $699 (32GB).
* You can wait until you’re eligible for our best upgrade pricing. We invite you to check your upgrade eligibility by visiting, calling *NEW# (*639#) on your AT&T device (we’ll send you a text with upgrade information), or visiting any of our over 2,200 stores.

If you want more details on our pricing and upgrade policy, check out our FAQs. And as always, you may visit one of our stores to talk with a representative.
In Summary

We’ve listened to our customers — and hope our response helps answer some of your questions and concerns.

We are incredibly proud to be the U.S. carrier for the new iPhone 3GS and will work around the clock to be ready on June 19 to serve customers who are interested in the fastest, most powerful iPhone yet.

Learn more about iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.

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  1. I really hope since I pre-ordered my 3gs last week I won’t be waiting 2 weeks for it to be delivered… I’m starting to have doubts and maybe should have just waited and showed up at the store down the street Friday morning.

  2. Thank god.

  3. bonedpoop69 says

    when does att exclusive contract with apple end?

  4. not nearly soon enough. The day Verizon gets the iphone is the day i pay AT&T an ETF (early termination fee).

  5. so, if i typed in that *NEW# number, and it said 3/12/10, that is locked in, or could change in the next few days? I quote you: “This info may not be accurate until tomorrow or Friday.” (FYI, I upgraded from the Edge iPhone to the 3G last year on release date, 7/11, yet still was given a 3/12 date).

    • That date is correct based off of when you last signed a 2yr contract. So that means you would not get the discounted price because your not able to upgrade in July or Aug. You usually have to fulfill 18-20 out of the 24 month contract b4 you can upgrade with a full discounted price.

  6. toNYc311 says

    I think AT&T could make exceptions for the iPhone if they really wanted to. I mean they are the first to say that they cannot service the device etc and to take it to Apple. If there is a problem with the phone itself I have taken it to an AT&T store and was redirected to an Apple store. It’s ridiculous. Apple makes the phone and the made the most unfortunate decision to allow AT&T to be exclusive carrier in the USA. I really don’t see why AT&T can’t give ALL current customers the new customer pricing.

    I happen to be unique though. I have an old Cingular grandfather plan and I always sell my old device to help pay for the new one. In this case I may eBay it jailbroken and unlocked with the 3.0 software to try and recoup the extra cost AT&T is charging. Not to mention other free benefits I get to utilize that I won’t mention here. I’m not all too annoyed with the 3G S pricing because I’m sure in the long run I’ll make out ok. But I still feel AT&T just burned (YET AGAIN) a lot of it’s “loyal” customer…

  7. So if i’m upgrading from the first iPhone, I only have to pay $200 if I upgrade from AT&T??

  8. This “new Policy” does not help the sorry sucker (me), that bought the iPhone 3g on May 8th, the cut off is May 9th. Att/Apple has not helped me one bit. They just say, the cut off is May 9th, no exceptions. Thank you for forking over your money for a 16g iPhone 3g.

    • why would you buy an iPhone in may when a new is announced every june? sorry but that’s dumb.

  9. Just love the new 32gb iPhone. Ultimate gadget for me. Nice post. Thanks.