Big changes at Verizon – they stopped paying up to $650 in early termination fees (ETF) if you switch carriers and come over to Verizon and they ended the buy-one-get-one (BOGO) promo they had going on the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge. Verizon’s promo with the Droid devices ended as well – if you bought two Droids, the second one was half-price. Wave7 wrote in a note to subscribers that, “Verizon launched its $650 ETF buyout on December 28 and AT&T launched its $650 ETF buyout in February. T-Mobile and Sprint have had comparable $650 offers in the market for a long time. Verizon’s Galaxy S7/Galaxy S7 Edge BOGO was slated to expire at the beginning of April, but was extended.” T-Mobile still offers its $650 ETF buyout for switching to them as your carrier. BOGO offers for the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are still a go at Sprint and AT&T’s BOGO only applies to iPhones.
Verizon has been advertising heavily on TV using Ricky Gervais as the spokesperson – one ad touts the way other carriers misrepresent how good their network is, in an effort to discredit Verizon, but not to believe them. The latest plug is that Verizon will pay you as much as $300 to trade-in your smartphone and activate a new line of service – not much of a bargain compared to the former promos. According to a Wells Fargo analyst, Verizon will be showing a loss of 120,000 postpaid customers during the first quarter, which will most likely encourage Verizon to offer new promotions during this second quarter.
Verizon has also turned its interests towards mobile payments – specifically, mobile payments using Android Pay. Yesterday they started a promotion with Google and Android Pay to allow their users to pick up some additional monthly data just for using your device to make an Android Pay purchase. The first purchase will net you 1GB of data and the third time you use Android Pay you will get another 1GB of data. Once Google acquired Verizon’s carrier-back system, Softcard (originally named ISIS), Verizon has jumped on the Android Pay bandwagon.
On the same note, Verizon has done its best to discourage Samsung Pay with its users and does not even allow Samsung to pre-install the app on its devices. Apparently, with Verizon’s strong backing of Android Pay, they must be getting some compensation from Google for this blatant favoritism. Verizon owners of Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S7 devices are now able to download the Samsung Pay app from the Play Store and Samsung Pay away.