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iPhone 3G is Cheaper… if You Qualify

iPhone 3G

AT&T has announced iPhone pricing details and the the good news is that you can buy one without a contract.  The bad news is that if you don’t sign a contract it will cost you $400 more.

On Tuesday of last week, AT&T announced the various voice and data plans available for the iPhone, and gave tips on how to be “iReady” when iPhone 3G goes on sale at AT&T retail stores this coming Friday, July 11.  All AT&T stores are opening early at 8 a.m. to accommodate the demand, but with each iPhone requiring an in-store activation, many are in doubt that they’ll be iReady when the clock strikes eight.

Regardless of that, I’ll be in line on Friday morning (unless the line is insanely long), and here is what AT&T is telling me to expect:

Pricing and Eligibility

iPhone 3G will be available for $199 for the 8GB model and $299 for the 16GB model. These prices require two-year contracts and are available to you if you fit in one of these three catagories:

  • iPhone customers who purchased before July 11
  • Customers activating a new line with AT&T
  • Current AT&T customers who are eligible, at the time of purchase, for an upgrade discount

If you are an existing AT&T customer, but you are in the middle of a contract, you can purchase the iPhone 3G for $399 for the 8GB model or $499 for the 16GB model (both options require a new two-year service agreement).  AT&T has said that a no-contract-required option will soon be available ($599 for the 8GB or $699 for the 16GB).

Remember that you will have to pay the ridiculous $18 “upgrade fee” if you are a current AT&T customer.

Voice, Data and Text Messaging Plans

iPhone 3G users can choose from four individual AT&T voice/data plans, each one including unlimited data (e-mail and Web browsing).

  • AT&T Nation Unlimited: Includes unlimited Anytime Minutes for $129.99 a month.
  • AT&T Nation 1350: Includes 1350 Anytime Minutes and unlimited Night & Weekend Minutes for $109.99 a month.
  • AT&T Nation 900: Includes 900 Anytime Minutes and unlimited Night & Weekend Minutes for $89.99 a month.
  • AT&T Nation 450: Includes 450 Anytime Minutes and 5,000 Night & Weekend Minutes for $69.99 a month.

Unlimited text messaging can be added for an additional $20; $15 (1,500 messages), or $5 (200 messages).

When you finally reach the counter on Friday morning, tell AT&T that 98 Pound Geekling sent you.  I promise that you’ll at least be rewarded with a strange look.

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