Major US wireless carrier Sprint has decided to decrease its activation fees for new handsets to $30, and from now on will charge its subscribers at the point of sale. As reported by Fierce Wireless, Sprint has made the fees reduction within the last couple of weeks. Previously, the mobile service network provider priced its activation fees at $36.
Sprint will apply the $30 activation fee to all smartphones it is offering, including units that are purchased at full price, via an installment option, or subsidized on a two year agreement. As for those subscribers who are choosing to purchase or upgrade in a Sprint retail outlet, or via any one of the major wireless carrier’s authorized dealers, they will now need to pay the activation fee at the point of sale, instead of having the $30 applied to their next smartphone bill.
On top of this, Sprint has also decided from now on to cap activation fees to only a couple of handsets each day, which means that subscribers will pay an on the spot $60 at the most if they are purchasing two or more handsets in-store. Subscribers who are buying or upgrading more than a couple handsets can expect to deal with the extra activation fees applied to their next smartphone bill.
Some subscribers often are shocked to find unexpected activation fees on their smartphone bill, in addition to the usual plan and device fees. With the latest changes that Sprint are adopting, the wireless carrier may be aiming to lessen that shock. Apart from the $30 activation fees, Sprint will also require subscribers who are handing back unwanted (but already activated) devices within the 14 day refund period to pay a $35 restocking fee. As for tablet devices and notebooks, the restocking fee is $75.
It should be noted that all of the major wireless carriers in the United States charge some sort of activation fee, together with other charges such as restocking fees and reconnection fees. But typically, activation fees are one time charges only, usually incurred by subscribers whenever they decide to add a new or upgraded handset to their existing smartphone plan. Verizon Wireless, for instance, charges a $20 activation fee to purchase or upgrade handsets acquired via installments, with a $40 activation fee for subsidized devices on two year agreements. AT&T, on the other hand, charges $15 (previously $45) to activate or upgrade handsets purchased via Next. As for T-Mobile, even though it is not charging activation fees, it does request its subscribers to pay for a SIM starter kit (recently increased to $20 from $15) when purchasing a new device.
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