The rumor mill indicates Apple is working on an iPhone subscription plan that would allow you to ‘lease’ your phone rather than buy.
If you’re a longtime reader, you already know I’m a Mac. I like Apple’s operating system and their devices. I’ve had an iPhone now for years. So you might assume I’d jump at the chance for an iPhone subscription plan.
You’d be wrong.
I briefly tried a Droid device years ago. I used an iPhone with AT&T but their service was so bad, I was losing calls. I switched to Verizon, which did not yet offer the iPhone. So I found myself stuck with a Droid until Verizon finally got the iPhone. I switched back to that device and have never looked back.
My biggest problem with the iPhone — and all of Apple’s other devices — is the price. Yes, they charge too much for their tech. But I acknowledge what others won’t admit when they complain about cost: Apple products do seem to last longer. They are more reliable.
You get what you pay for. Yes, it’s an annoying fact of life, because you shouldn’t have to pay a higher price for quality. Quality should always be there.
But for me, Apple has offered the better quality product. That includes the iPhone.
I’m considering an iPhone upgrade this year because I’m considering a switch in mobile carriers. Supposedly, I might have the option for an iPhone subscription plan when I’m ready to upgrade.
I took advantage of an upgrade plan
When I purchased my current iPhone, an iPhone XS Max, I took advantage of Apple’s iPhone Upgrade Program. That option allowed me to buy the phone and AppleCare (their warranty program) over two years’ worth of payments at zero percent interest.
You can also upgrade after the first year. Yes, you’ve only paid half the price of the old phone and then you start over with payments on a new phone.
But I paid off my phone in January of 2021. So I haven’t had any payment at all since then.
If the next iPhone, expected to be released this fall, is the iPhone 14, you can see there are several updates to hit iPhones since my last purchase. Depending on what the iPhone 14 might offer, I’ll probably either upgrade to a 13 or 14.
How an iPhone subscription might work
MacWorld has the speculation on what subscribers might expect. Since Apple has apparently not confirmed anything, speculation is all we seem to have.
Under the subscription plan, presumably, I’d have what MacWorld refers to as “payments forever.”
Presumably, an iPhone subscription would require an iPhone user to pay a fixed monthly fee to carry the phone. Presumably, you never “pay off” the lease. So there’s always going to be a payment. Even if you don’t upgrade your phone for a few years, you never stop paying.
Granted, a subscription would at least encourage you to take advantage of getting the newer model phones sooner. If you’re paying every month, you might as well have the newest, greatest model.
But does anyone in this economy really want to sign up for another monthly expense?
That’s a hard pass for me.
I’d rather pay a little more a month and pay off the phone. I don’t necessarily need a new phone every time one comes out. (You can tell that from the fact that I still have an X model.) I think I’ll stick with the old way.