Woe are those who were excited about Sprint’s One-Up program. The program was an answer to T-Mobile JUMP, the early upgrade solution that offered users the ability to upgrade their phone after 6 months to a year of use. I say “was” because Sprint is no longer offering it, with the company announcing that One-Up has been retired as of January 9th.
The program consisted of customers who purchased an eligible smartphone with no down payment, depending on device, and agreed to 24 monthly installment payments for the device. After 12 consecutive installment payments, those customers are eligible to give back their current smartphone and upgrade to a new smartphone by entering into a new Installment Agreement.
The program also gave Sprint customers a $15 discount on their monthly service plan. Folks who were able to get in on the fun will be able to keep their discounted price for the time being, though Sprint will snatch it away with your next phone upgrade or if you decide to switch plans. So why are they doing this?
Because they believe the Framily plan is a better value for you and yours. The Framily program allows customers to get discounts on their phone service for each line of service on their account. Framily (friends and family) accounts with 7 or more members can get up to $35 off their monthly service, for example.
Framilies can consist of multiple accounts, meaning your 4-line account could potentially combine with your brother’s 3-line account to get to that fruitful 7-line discount, and every line still gets their own bill and services.
It’s worth noting that Sprint still does support annual upgrades with these new plans, though it doesn’t come with the benefit of discounted service. Here’s a line from their official FAQ about it:
I am a current Sprint customer and want to change my current plan to Sprint Framily Plan. I am upgrade eligible or am in an active Sprint One Up installment billing agreement.
The One Up customer will maintain the annual upgrade benefit afforded to them under the program (at no additional charge per month) until the end of their current installment billing agreement provided they make their 12 consecutive Installment Agreement payments on time.
When the customer elects to take advantage of the annual upgrade, the customer must enter into a new Installment Agreement and giveback current phone under an Installment Agreement.
If they would like to keep the annual upgrade option, the customer will need to purchase the $20/month per line unlimited data with annual upgrades buy-up and make 12 consecutive payments to qualify for the next annual upgrade benefit.
It’s an unfortunate caveat of Sprint’s new vision for family plans. While Framily seems to be a great value for certain people, it isn’t quite as good as One-Up was for many more. Framily doesn’t seem to be quite as beneficial as One-Up until you hit that 5-7 line mark, which is a difficult mark to reach for many folks.
Unfortunately this is what Sprint feels is the best way to go moving forward, and we’ll likely see this plan stick around much longer than One-Up did. If you’re still not turned off by all this, be sure to stop into your local Sprint store or call and see about all the different options you have (though you could get a lot of the information you need by perusing Sprint’s official FAQ document).