Verizon ditches annual contracts; see how to save money on your smartphone bill

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DENVER -- Verizon Wireless is ditching annual contracts, and switching to no-contract smartphone plans on Thursday.

“I just like the idea of the flexibility that offers, so I’m very interested in looking into that,” customer David Zwart said.

There are four new plans to choose from:

  • Small (1GB)
  • Medium (3GB)
  • Large (6GB)
  • Extra-large (12GB)

There are no more down payments, activation fees, or annual contracts.

If you want to get a new phone, you can pay for it up front, or pay it off every month over two years.

Experts say the best savings scenario is to keep your existing phone and buy a big data package.

As a base example, say you switch from your Verizon annual contract to the new no-contract plan. For one device and 1GB, you’ll save 20 dollars a month. For 3GB, it’s a savings of $25, 6GB is a $30 a month saving, and for 12GB you’ll save $40 per month.

We asked a local consumer protection attorney what he thinks of the new plan.

“Any plan that allows a consumer to go without a term contract I think is a good competitive move,” Rick Bailey of the Burg Simpson Law Firm said.

He also said it may even drive future prices down.

“A competitive market like this ought to provide the consumer with some real options and some benefits.”

Verizon customers on an annual contract can stay on their current plan, or switch for no extra fee. The company told us the main reason for the change was from the feedback of their customers.