updated 12:00 pm EST, Fri January 21, 2011
ATT phone trade-in program due Sunday
New details of AT&T's service plan revamp have leaked on Friday and now point to a trade-in program. Under the terms, customers could turn in a phone from any carrier either for direct credit on a new phone or else get a check, donate the credit to charity or recycle the device. The only condition spotted by BGR was that the phone had to be in working order to qualify for some deals.
The new option would take effect the same day as the messaging change, January 23.
While both plans were likely in development for some time, they both come timed less than two weeks before Verizon iPhone users can start pre-orders. Verizon itself has a credit program for recent buyers that will help offset the price of a contract-free iPhone. The new AT&T trade-ins aren't likely to draw many customers away but could lead existing subscribers to get a new phone on the existing network rather than look at switching over to get the best price.
AT&T declined to comment on the recent batch of leaks.