AT&T Next: A guide to its early upgrade plan

14 September 2017

AT&T NEXT early upgrade plan for iPhone and more

AT&T Next is an upgrade program for your smartphone. In this guide, we're going to break it down so you're well aware of what you can do in order to get your hands on the latest version of your favorite smartphone like the latest iPhone 8 or most recent from the Samsung series.

Now that the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and the iPhone X are here, most of us are interested in finding cheapest way to get their hands on it. However, you don't have to be an Apple fan to take advantage of this program. Read on to learn about AT&T Next.

AT&T Next

Monthly fee 5% of the purchase price to upgrade at 12 months, or 3.3% for a 24 month upgrade.
Repayment period AT&T Next Every Year: 24 months (for a 12 month upgrade)
AT&T Next: 30 months (for a 24 month upgrade)
Upgrades AT&T Next Every Year: Every 12 months, or when 50% of the device price is repaid
AT&T Next: Every 24 months, or when 80% of the device cost is repaid 
Subsidy still included in service plan? No: Mobile Share Value Plans offer a $15 or $25 monthly discount for each phone bought under the Next scheme; $15 for plans of 10GB of less, and $25 for plans over 10GB
Device downpayment required? For customers with good credit, no, but you can make an optional payment upfront to reduce monthly costs.
Customers with poorer credit may need to make a 30% down payment. 
Insurance included? No
Available for all plans? Yes
Available from Now

How it works

Customers can choose a smartphone with no down payment or upfront fee. You can always make optional payments if you want to lower your monthly charges. 

The price of the phone is then spread across equally in 30 monthly installments. After 80% of full retail price is paid off, or 24 months, your new phone is eligible for an upgrade. 

For example, the iPhone 8 64 GB is going for $699

  • $0 to sign up, then -
  • 30 monthly repayments of around $23.30 – equalling a total of $699

The 'catch' is that if you upgrade early (i.e. before you've paid off your old phone in full), you need to hand in your old device when you sign up for your new phone. So you can't, for example, get a new phone and then sell your old one on eBay for a profit.

Although you don’t need to move to a new cell service plan to be eligible for the program (unless you are a new AT&T customer), or sign a service contract, you will need to sign an installment agreement for the repayment period. If you cancel your AT&T service before your device is paid off in full, you will be required to pay the outstanding balance.

What it looks like

Below is a quick comparison between the costs of buying a Samsung Galaxy S8 through Next with a 30-month upgrade option and buying the same device on the same plan, but at full price upfront (spoiler: you're actually paying about the same in total with each option).

Samsung Galaxy S8 

$0 down 30% down
Retail price $594.99 $594.99
Down payment $0 $594.99
Financed price $594.99 $416.49
Next (on 30/mo) $19.84 $13.89
AT&T Next Every Year (on 24/mo) $24.80 $17.36

We also need to stress that you can only upgrade your device if it is fully functional and in good physical condition. If your phone is damaged or not working right, you’ll still be required to pay it off in full before you can upgrade - and Next doesn't cover cell phone or tablet insurance in the event of loss, theft or accidents.

Check out some of the deals on the AT&T network now: 

Samsung Galaxy S8 Plans

With unlimited data | Filters
Samsung Galaxy S8
Carrier Inclusions  
  • Unlimited Plan with Auto Pay
  • Unlimited Data
  • Outright
  • $55/mo + $699.99 Upfront

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