Upgrading to a 3G iPhone Is Easy; Getting a New One, Not So Much

iPhone 3G_618.jpgWith all the anticipation built up around the July 11 availability of the 3G iPhone, InformationWeek took some time to find out what types of hoops AT&T customers will have to jump through in order to get one of the sleek and shiny handsets at the new subsidized rates.

AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel told the publication that folks who already have an iPhone can upgrade to the 3G model at the low, subsidized price of $199 for the 8GB handset and $299 for the 16GB one. Of course, taking advantage of the offer requires signing a new two-year contract. AT&T customers who bought their iPhone after May 26 who choose to go 3G will be refunded the difference between what they paid and the subsidized price of the new version, but they will have to pay a 10% restocking fee.

According to the article, qualifying for the subsidized price on a 3G iPhone if you’re not upgrading from the prior model is a whole lot more complicated. Siegel declined to tell the magazine the specifics of how AT&T plans to qualify new iPhone purchasers. “There’s a whole lot of variables, and I would hate to give specific criteria,” he said. “It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach.”