Not all in-store Verizon folks are idiots, and why an Edge plan saves money
Yes some are bone heads but some aren't. Here's my recent experience.
I have 4 phones on my account with a 10 gig shared data plan. My daughter wanted to move from Sprint to Verizon so my wife and I went to a Verizon store to help her through the transaction. One of the first things I do when I talk to one of the CS reps is state my position and what I want from this conversation with him/her. I like to see what they know or don't know. My rep, John, saw that I wasn't an average clueless customer and he immediately shifted into a smarter mode. Kudos for that.
So, my daughter decides on a Moto X. He runs the numbers and quickly figures out that it's much cheaper for her to join our family plan. No problem, we'll do that. She now pays us monthly for 1/5 of the total bill.
Then he pulls this one: "I'd like for you to look at the Edge plan for that Moto X." Ok, I'm not dumb, I've read all about the Edge plan. Yes it's no contract and yes you can switch to a new phone after a year but you pay for the phone as you go. I've looked at the numbers and it never makes sense to get Edge unless you just can't wait to upgrade phones. But boy do you pay for it.
Right now my opinion of John is changing. He's trying to pull a fast one. So I object saying, "I'm not interested in Edge." He comes back with, "What if I can prove it saves you money?" "OK, wise guy," I'm thinking, "do you take me for an idiot? Show me how smart you are, bonehead." Instead, I say, "Really? How?"
And he shows me. The way the Edge program works is that the monthly cost of the phone on an Edge plan is retail cost divided into 20 months. In the case of the Moto X it's $400 retail or $20 per month. Turns out if you have a 10 gig, or higher, data plan they discount the Edge program by $25 for EACH phone on the Edge plan. So, in her case the $20 plan minus the $25 discount reduced the plan by $5 compared to a 2 year subsidized contract. "So," I thought, "this guy really knew what he was doing."
Other advantages to Edge: The phone can be upgraded after 60% of the retail price is paid off. That's 12 months. If you want to trade it in sooner than 12 months then pay the difference to get up to 60%. This is a trade-in, you don't keep the phone. However, if you do keep the phone for 20 months it's yours to keep, no trade in necessary.
The break even point is phone that retails for $500. At that point the monthly payment is $25 and the discount is $25.
An HTC One and LG G2 are break even on Edge. A Note 3, S5 and LG G3 are only $5 more on Edge. All in all, it turns out, Edge is a pretty good deal if you have the 10 Gig plan.
In the end, my daughter was happy, I'm happy and it was a great experience. So, not all CS reps are idiots.