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Verizon gives early upgrades ahead of iPhone 5, Droid Bionic

updated 04:25 pm EDT, Mon August 29, 2011

Verizon moves upgrade schedules for Apple, Moto

Verizon subscribers saw the possible effect of a follow-up iPhone release for the first time Monday with word that customers were having their upgrade schedules moved up. Similar to what has been orchestrated by AT&T in the past, Verizon owners are seeing their upgrade timeframes moved up to make them immediately eligible. In some cases, the upgrades have been moved up even for those who wouldn't have been eligible until May 2012.

A possibility exists that Verizon may be catering to Android buyers. Motorola's Droid Bionic ships next week, based on most leaks, and is considered the highest-profile Verizon Android phone of the year. A month later, the HTC Vigor and Samsung Droid Prime are candidates.

Despite some hopes from Android supporters making mention of the eligibility, however, the upgrade change stands a greater possibility of being for the iPhone 5 in October. Although Android still defines a significant part of Verizon's smartphone sales, the iPhone is now its most important product and has typically had much larger launches than any Android phone. Verizon activated 2.3 million iPhones in the spring, almost twice the 1.2 million, primarily Android-based 4G devices that moved in the same period.

Early upgrade offers have so far generally only been given out during iPhone launches in North America and are usually meant to catch customers who might be tempted to switch when their contract normally expires if they can't get the iPhone as soon as it's available. [via Droid-Life]

by MacNN Staff



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