1. Computing

How Much Does an iPhone Cost to Buy and Use?

By

iPhone 3G

iPhone 3G

Apple
Question: How Much Does an iPhone Cost to Buy and Use?
Answer:

Looking for information about the new iPhone 4S, instead? Read How Much Does the iPhone 4S Cost?.

Wondering how much you'll pay to get a shiny new iPhone 3G? The price of the iPhone really depends on two factors: The price of the phone itself, plus the service fee you pay every month to AT&T. Here's a complete list of all the costs associated with buying and owning an iPhone 3G.

THE PHONE ITSELF

The iPhone 3G is available from four authorized retailers: Apple, AT&T, Best Buy, and Walmart. All of them, except Walmart, charge the same price for the various iPhone models. (Walmart's prices are $2 cheaper.) All of these prices require that you sign a new two-year service contract with AT&T; existing AT&T customers who are eligible for an upgrade will get these prices, too.

  • 8GB iPhone 3G (Black): $199
  • 16GB iPhone 3G (Black): $299
  • 16GB iPhone 3G (White): $299
  • AT&T subscribers who are not yet eligible for a handset upgrade will be charged the following prices:

  • 8GB iPhone 3G (Black): $399
  • 16GB iPhone 3G (Black): $499
  • 16GB iPhone 3G (White): $499
  • All existing AT&T customers will be charged an upgrade fee of $18, whether or not they are eligible for the discounted prices.

    MONTHLY SERVICE

    When purchasing an iPhone 3G, you'll need a voice plan, a data plan, and a text messaging plan in order to use the phone. Here's how much you can expect to pay for your monthly service:

    Data

    Unlimited Data Plan: $30 per month

    This is a requirement; AT&T does not offer another data plan for the iPhone 3G.

    Voice Plans

    AT&T offers a choice of voice plans for the iPhone 3G. All offer a certain number of nationwide calling minutes, and all offer free calling to other AT&T mobile phones.

  • $99.99 per month: Unlimited voice minutes
  • $79.99 per month: 1350 voice minutes
  • $59.99 per month: 900 voice minutes
  • $39.99 per month: 450 voice minutes
  • All of the plans (except the unlimited plan) include rollover minutes, which allow you to save unused voice minutes and apply them to your next bill should you go over your allotment. Additional minutes cost between 35 cents and 45 cents per minute, depending on your plan.

    Most of the plans offer unlimited free night (9pm to 6am) and weekend calling; the only one that doesn't is the plan with 450 minutes, which limits you to 5000 night and weekend minutes.

    All of the plans also require that you pay a one-time activation fee of $36 to set up the line.

    Text Plans

    The first-generation iPhone did not require you to pay for a text plans; all text messages sent and received were included as part of the unlimited data plan. That's no longer the case. If you plan on using your iPhone 3G to send text messages, you'll want a text plan. Here are the options.

  • $20 per month: Unlimited Texting
  • $15 per month: 1500 text messages (sent or received); 5 cents for each additional message
  • $5 per month: 200 text messages (sent or received); 10 cents for each additional message
  • Without a plan, you'll be charged 20 cents for each text message you send or receive.

    Related Video
    Beginner iPhone Tips and Tricks
    1. About.com
    2. Computing
    3. Cell Phones
    4. Cell Phones - The Basics
    5. Shopping Tips
    6. How Much Does an iPhone Cost - The Price of the iPhone 3G

    ©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.