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AT&T's early upgrade smartphone program detailed. Spoiler: they made it $125 more expensive

Here is what we have just found out… AT&T recently modified their early upgrade program for smartphones, and due to smartphones becoming “increasingly more sophisticated” — and the cost of the devices increasing — AT&T has increased their $75 early upgrade fee to $200. That means a BlackBerry Bold 9700 that would have cost you $275 will now cost you $399. Quick messaging and basic phones are not subjected to the new change. AT&T told employees that, “This change to our exception pricing is necessary to maintain our ability to provide customers with the best selection of devices and maintain our leadership in the Smartphone category.” And hey, with Verizon charging a $350 ETF for advanced devices, it was only a matter of time before AT&T started exploring their options.

Jonathan Geller founded Boy Genius Report, now known as BGR, in 2006. It became the biggest mobile news destination in the world by the end of 2009, and BGR was acquired by leading digital media company PMC in April 2010.

Jonathan is President of the newly formed BGR Media, LLC., and Editor-in-chief of the BGR website.

What started as a side project at the age of 16, quickly transpired into 24-hour days and nights of sharing exclusive and breaking news about the mobile communications industry. BGR now reaches up to 100 million readers a month through the website, syndication partners, and additional channels.