Best Deals on the iPhone 4S is what everyone was talking about this week. Here is the scoop! The iPhone 4S is being being released at a retail price of $199-$399, for 16GB-48GB, which is a price range you’re probably going to have to live with that is, if you want one right away. The cost of having the newest release is that you’re not going to be able to find great deals on refurbished models for some time. However, within weeks to months, if you’re willing to wait, you can probably pick one up on eBay for less. And if you already have a carrier, you may be eligible for an upgrade with a discount sometime soon.
But if none of the the above apply to you, the best thing you can do now is find your carrier. The ultimate cost of your iPhone depends upon the price and length of your contract. Currently, three carriers, AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon are all signed up to carry the iPhone 4S. Let’s take a look at their plans to see if we can get to a bottom line that will actually save you something.
Best Deals on the iPhone 4S – AT&T
No one is surprised that AT&T will be carrying the iPhone 4S. Their calling plans for 450 minutes, 900 minutes, and unlimited are $60, $80, and $90, respectively. These do not include texting or data.
If you want unlimited texting, it’s going to be another $20 a month. Anything less and you’re simply going to pay $0.20-0.30 per text. Data plans range from $15 for 200MB to $125 for 12GB, and unlimited is not available.
Best Deals on the iPhone 4S -Verizon
Verizon has the lowest calling plans at $40-$70. But once again, texting and data are not included.
The texting rates for pay-as-you-go and unlimited are about the same as AT&T, but Verizon also offers 250 and 500 texts for $5 and $10, respectively. Data is $30 for 2GB, all the way up to $100 for 12GB. No unlimited data is available.
Best Deals on the iPhone 4S – Sprint
Sprint’s plans for calling are each significantly more than the equivalent plans at AT&T and Verizon, ranging $80-$110. However, all plans includes unlimited texting and data.
The Bottom Line on Best Deals on the iPhone 4S
Cheapest Monthly Plan: Verizon’s calling plan at $40 ? you get 450 minutes, with no data included, and each text is $.20-$.25 each. But if you’re getting a smartphone, let’s face it – you’re going to want data. You can add 2GB and pay $70 total. You can also get 250 texts for $5 if you are so inclined. Your monthly bill is $75 before fees.
Most Expensive: Generally, AT&T. Even without a texting package you’re going to pay $85 for calling and 2GB of data. If you can get by on the piddly 200MB, however, you can get your plan down to $75. But why would you do it, when you can get the Verizon plan for the same price, with more data, and a 250 texting plan?
Best Deal: Sprint’s 450 and 900 minute plans are $80 and $100 respectively. The total plan is only $5 more than Verizon, and you get unlimited text and data. If you go over on your either data or text for your Verizon or AT&T plans, you will be charged more.
Unlimited Everything – Best deal, Sprint at $110. Verizon and AT&T don’t even offer unlimited data.
Cheapest Unlimited Calling – Verizon at $70. With 250 texts/2GB of data you’ve got $105. But for another $5, you can get unlimited texts and data with Sprint. See a trend here?
Need Mobile Hotspot – Verizon and AT&T offer mobile hotspot free of charge with data plans over 4GB. Sprint charges $30 regardless. Here, Verizon wins again with the 450 minute/250 text/4GB plan for $95. The Sprint 450 plan with the mobile hotspot option is $110, and in return, for your $15 you get unlimited data and text.
Ultimately, AT&T is the big loser. So far, there doesn’t seem to be a viable package that can beat either Verizon or Sprint. For peace of mind, choose Sprint, and if you insist on saving a few dollars, go with Verizon. Remember that the final price you pay for your iPhone 4S includes any fees you receive in excess of your plans. If you are even the slightest bit afraid that you consistently go over your texting or data plans with Verizon, there’s no question that Sprint is the best deal in town.