Before the advent of “Simply Everything” there was an even cheaper way to get Sprint service. All you needed was the email address of a Sprint employee, and you’d qualify for a special plan called “Sprint Employee Referral Offer” or SERO. Basically it was deeply discounted service, and the people lucky enough to sign up have enjoyed ridiculously cheap wireless for the last few years.
In an attempt to drive people off SERO and onto the more lucrative “Simply Everything” plans, Sprint stopped allowing SERO customers to upgrade to new phones. Basically, name a hot phone on Sprint, and SERO customers couldn’t have it. No Evo, no Palm Pre, no Epic 4G, etc. Unless you let them pry you off your SERO.
Sprint’s made a change to the SERO terms, though, that gives subscribers a chance to finally own an Android or Web OS device. According to Sprint:
I am a SERO customer considering an upgrade and understand SERO rate plans aren’t compatible with all devices. What devices aren’t compatible with these plans?
The Samsung Instinct, Samsung Instinct S30, Samsung Instinct HD, Samsung Moment, HTC Hero, Palm Pre, Palm Pixi, HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G are not compatible with current SERO rate plans. If you are considering an upgrade to one of these devices, you will need to also upgrade your rate plan to one of the Everything Plus Data (Individual or Family) rate plans. HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G also require the $10 Premium Data add-on. Effective 10/1/10, new SERO Premium rate plans will be available which will be compatible with the devices listed above. Only customers on a current SERO rate plan as of 10/1/10 will be eligible to swap to a SERO Premium plan.
What are the plan details of the new SERO Premium rate plans?
As of 10/1/10, there will be two SERO Premium plans available, SERO Premium 500 at $40/month and SERO Premium 1250 at $59.99/month. SERO Premium plans will match current SERO rate plans with two added features, Any Mobile Anytime and Unlimited GPS Navigation. SERO Premium rate plans will be compatible with all devices offered by Sprint. Only customers on a current SERO rate plan as of 10/1/10 will be able to swap to a SERO Premium rate plan. SERO Premium rate plans will not be discountable – customers on current SERO plans receiving discounts above and beyond the already discounted SERO rate will lose those discounts when moving to a SERO premium plan. 4G handsets such as HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G will also require the $10 Premium Data add-on.
Now, from what I’m reading it looks like if you don’t want to change your SERO, just don’t upgrade your phone. But if you’re still on an older smartphone, and dying for something newer but can’t let go of your SERO, this hits a middle ground between no new phone and a significantly higher Simply Everything plan.
Do you have a SERO? Have you hung onto an older phone in exchange for cheaper rates? Does a new phone offer enough of a carrot to upgrade to a more expensive monthly rate? Share your experiences and thoughts below!