Starting April 22, Verizon will add a $30 upgrade fee when customers upgrade to a new device. The fee will could add up to $1 billion in revenue because it sells 33 million phones to existing customers.
The fee follows other carriers. Sprint and AT&T charge $36 for upgrades and T-Mobile charges $18 for upgrades.
By adding on a fee it makes the price of the phone look lower than it is. The sum pales in comparison to what the latest model unsubsidized smartphone costs for example the full retail price for a Samsung Galaxy Nexus is $649.99 as opposed to the $299.99 contract price not to mention the monthly fees.
Many current Verizon smartphone owners have unlimited data grandfathered, to give up the contract and start all over again would not make sense to save $35. Verizon Wireless will be launching many new 4G LTE markets in the next few weeks including a major expansion in Florida.
The fee will go into effect before the two-year anniversary of the launch of the first Droid Incredible and the suspected launch date of the new Droid Incredible 4G.
Many leaked photos are showing the new Droid Incredible 4G to look much like the HTC One S/X with HTC Sense 4.0. Many are saying that it has a 4" touchscreen which seems small to us because the HTC One S has a 4.3" touchscreen and the HTC One X has a 4.7" touchscreen. Verizon is highly competitive. The first Droid Incredible has a 3.7" touchscreen and the Droid Incredible 2 has a 4" touchscreen, just adding 4G LTE access doesn't seem to big reason to upgrade, especially if you have to pay a $36 upgrade fee along with other fees.
We can be pretty sure that the next Droid will be the Droid Incredible 4G, launched at the two-year anniversary of the first Droid Incredible. After that the Droid Fighter is expected with little know about the release date.
If you want to know the top best Android an' Droid smartphones now and later, read our a review of the best Verizon smartphones available today and in the future. You may be able to get one before the upgrade fee is instituted.