AT&T joins Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint in offering up to $650 in ETF payoffs

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AT&T (NYSE: T) has joined the rest of the nation's largest carriers in offering to pay off the early termination fees of customers who decide to switch to AT&T. The operator said customers who choose the offer can also combine it with AT&T's buy-one, get-one free promotion that applies to most popular smartphones like the latest high-end Apple and Samsung phones.

"These offers are some of our best to date," said Glenn Lurie, president and CEO of AT&T Mobility in a release. "Our $650 credit is a great reward for new customers who switch to AT&T and our buy-one, get-one free is another great reward for our valued customers in the market for new smartphones.  There has never been a better time for new and existing AT&T customers to rack up the savings."

AT&T announced the new offer in a press release, and it was also noted by Wave7 Research.

Just like the similar ETF offers from Verizon (NYSE: VZ), T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) and Sprint (NYSE: S), customers who switch to AT&T must submit their final statement from their existing carrier and then request from AT&T credit of up to $650 to pay off any remaining charges from their former carrier. And to take advantage of AT&T's BOGO offer, users must purchase the first phone for a new line or an upgrade, and then they can receive a second phone for a new line using AT&T's Next 24 equipment installation plan.

AT&T added that the offers can be applied to its new unlimited data plan, which provides limitless talking, texting and data to DirecTV customers.

T-Mobile started the ETF-payoff trend in early 2014, when its aggressive campaign helped it add 1.3 million postpaid subscribers but also cost roughly $100 million. Nonetheless, Sprint followed T-Mobile's lead earlier this year with a similar campaign. And in December Verizon threw its hat into the ring with its own $650 ETF payoff promotion.

AT&T is likely launching the ETF payoff promotion to goose first quarter subscriber figures. In the fourth quarter, AT&T posted mixed quarterly results, adding 2.8 million new connections but seeing a drop in wireless revenue year-over-year. The operator reported a net loss of 256,000 postpaid phone customers but posted 696,000 net adds in tablets and computing devices and 469,000 net prepaid adds. AT&T also added a net of 1.2 million connected devices during the quarter.

For more:
- see this release

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