Find When You Are Eligible for a New iPhone Upgrade Subsidy & Get a Reminder

Mar 22, 2013 - 10 Comments

iPhone upgrade

Itching to upgrade to a new iPhone but don’t want to pay full price? You can easily find out when you are eligible for the subsidized upgrade rate, plus set an automatic reminder for when the new upgrade rate is available for your current plan. This is great if you want to upgrade your iPhone only when you are eligible for the discounted carrier subsidized rate, which is fairly common considering it’s quite a bit cheaper than paying the early-upgrade rates.

This is all quite easy to setup, and if you want it’ll add the date to your iCloud-synced Calendar and then alert you when the time has come. In most cases this will be anywhere from months away if not a year plus, but you won’t have to wonder anymore, as it shows you exactly when your upgrade eligibility date is. This works for all subsidized carriers in the USA, including AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, and presumably the same in other countries too.

Find Upgrade Eligibility & Set a Reminder

  • Download the free Apple Store app if you don’t have it already
  • Launch Apple Store app and log in to your account
  • Tap on “Upgrade your iPhone”
  • Enter some basic identifying info, like the last four of your social and the billing zipcode for your iPhone contract
  • Look at the pricing info for current rates, and look below for the full subsidized rates
  • Tap on “Add reminder to Calendar” to bring an upgrade reminder into the Calendar app

Check iphone upgrade eligibility and get a reminder

The reminder will be in your calendar like anything else, but keep in mind it’s (usually) a ways in the future so you won’t necessarily see it without flipping ahead months or years.

As you can see in the screenshot, the early upgrade rate is considerably more expensive than the subsidized rate, at $449 vs $199… for that kind of savings it’s almost always worth waiting.

Forget the Reminder, Just See the Upgrade Prices & Dates

Don’t want to get a reminder? Just want to see how much it costs? No sweat, you can also use this same feature to just see when your upgrade eligibility is and exactly how much it will cost. Look for the date and prices to see the full subsidy rate for each accompanying iPhone model:

Find out when iPhone is eligible for upgrade

Sure, the current iPhone model will be shown, but in a lot of cases by the time you are eligible for the update, the next-gen iPhone will already be out and thus your eligibility will apply to that new iPhone instead.

Thanks to @AppleSpotlight for the tip idea, don’t forget to follow us on Twitter too!


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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPhone, Tips & Tricks


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  1. Doc Rock says:

    Sorry, I mean same info

  2. Doc Rock says:

    On AT&T you can just dial *639# and press call. A few seconds later you’ll get a text with your eligibility information. Verizon can call “#UPG” or “#874” to get the saem info.

  3. Brent says:

    You can just go to and under the tools tab click Check Upgrade Availability, then your phone number, billing address and your cell phone provider. Takes less than 30 seconds then you can choose the option to receive an email reminder when you’re eligible. A lot faster/easier.

  4. Brian S says:

    This didn’t work for me either and I am in US on AT&T.

  5. Shirley Allan says:

    Have tried everything to find what you describe. No results.

    • Amy Soldier says:

      Howdy Shirley Allan, … uh, I had to double check, too. Check to see you are using the Apple Store app and not the App Store app. Tick the link for the Apple Store app in the first paragraph of this article to confirm that you are firing up the correct app.

  6. Nabil says:

    That’s a great feature unfortunately it doesn’t exist at least in my AppStore App (France) .. I don’t know but sometimes I feel like I should move to USA to get things done or maybe by changing my ITunes ID to the American Store then it will appears and I could benefit from all the recent features and gadgets …the same thing with the 2 Step verification security authentication I am still waiting … and waiting as I am still desperatly waiting for the second season of Shameless to appears in iTunes Store I can get it ….

  7. Nevin says:

    Wish it worked for macs… From a corporate purchasing standpoint, it’d be compelling info to have, not unlike say, ciscos or higher-end servers/workstations. I would think Apple would be in as good of a position as any to leverage such an End of Life incentive across its entire line.

  8. Justin says:

    This does not work in Australia :S

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