Verizon’s $350 ETF Fee – FCC Wants to Know Why & Senator Wants Them Gone!

98798.doc Verizon has really been hammered on their new $350 Early Termination Fee for “Advanced Devices” the last few days. The FCC has sent Verizon a 4 page letter asking Verizon:

  • How customers are notified of the new ETF?
  • How the ETF is calculated especially with you still paying $120 in the last month?
  • What exactly defines a “Advanced Device”?

They have also thrown in a few extra questions about customers getting charged for inadvertently using data on their phones but most of you wont care about that. According to Engadget Verizon has until Dec 17th to answer.

While I kind of understand why Verizon is raising the ETF I never really understood the ETF in the first place. Carriers claim the ETF is to prevent customers from getting a discount on the phone and then bolting with the carriers discounted phone. It would make sense if you just had to pay a prorated portion of the discount the carrier gave you on the phone. The problem is that carriers would base it on their “retail” price that is in the $400+ range even for 2 year old devices.

Even crazier news is Amy Klobuchar, a Senator of Minnesota, introduced a bill in Congress trying to limit ETF fees in response to Verizon raising them. [via Gizmodo]

What do you think about ETF fees? Personally I wish carriers would just charge fair prices for devices and lower their monthly fees so they don’t need to recoup a device discount over the life of a contract… Its not like they are paying you when your 2 year contract is over…

2 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. See. What is even more annoying is the fact that these ETF’s are based on “retail” prices but we all know that the price a carrier pays the manufacturer is much less due to the quantities they buy(bulk). So please don’t tell me that the new ETF is to recoup the cost of the phone when we know that the previous ETF of 175 was more than enough to cover the cost. That is why I am flabergasted when people not only passionately agree with these new fess but also defend them!

  2. Rogers is even worst. If I were to cancel my plan right now, I would have to pay 350+ another 300$ or more for opting out of my obligatory 3 year data plan. I got the 6gb/m special plan when the iphone was released for 30$ plus my voice plan. Made sense to sign up for it as it would end up being 10$ more a month then the wonderful 4mb plan I had before.

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