Verizon's Annual Upgrade Program Now Includes Samsung Galaxy S7s

Customers will be able to trade in their Samsung smartphones for a new phone every year under Verizon's Annual Upgrade Program.

Verizon, smartphones, phone upgrades, T-Mobile JUMP! On Demand, Samsung Galaxy S7, AT&T

Verizon customers who crave having a new Samsung smartphone each year now get their wish through Verizon's Annual Upgrade Program, which will let users get a new Galaxy phone after they have paid for at least 50 percent of the cost of the phone they are presently using.

Under the program, customers will be able to turn in their old Samsung phone and get a new phone from Verizon's wide variety of handsets, according to a March 14 announcement by the company.

Customers who bought the latest Samsung Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge smartphones (pictured) from Verizon using the carrier's device payment plans are being automatically signed up for the upgrade program, according to the company. The Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge went on sale on March 11.

Under the Verizon Annual Upgrade Program, customers will be eligible to upgrade 30 days after activating any new phone after more than half of its purchase price has been paid.

Users don't have to participate and can still pay off their existing phones in 24 monthly payments.

New customers who switch to Verizon or who are activating a new Samsung Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge handset can receive $100 for a limited time, according to the company. Existing customers can receive up to $300 when they trade in their previous smartphone and upgrade or add a line for the Samsung Galaxy S7 or Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

T-Mobile has had a similar smartphone upgrade program with its almost 3-year-old JUMP On Demand program, which lets T-Mobile customers switch mobile phones as many as three times a year, according to an earlier eWEEK story. The JUMP On Demand program began in July 2013 and originally allowed customers to switch devices twice a year after a six-month waiting period. That means that T-Mobile customers can potentially get six new and different smartphones in two years.

More than 10 million customers signed up for T-Mobile's original JUMP plan in its first two years and upgraded their smartphones about 30 percent faster than other customers, usually about every 14 months compared with the industry-average of nearly 20 months, according to T-Mobile.

Earlier in March, AT&T and T-Mobile offered buy-one-get-one-free deals on the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge smartphones, according to an earlier eWEEK story. The deals are being offered to new customers or existing ones who add a new line of service.

AT&T will provide a free Galaxy S7 phone to customers who add a new S7 or S7 Edge handset and a new line of service through a 30-month AT&T Next 24 installment plan, while T-Mobile is offering customers a choice of a free S7 or S7 Edge handset with the purchase of a second device.

The AT&T offer applies to qualified AT&T mobile service plans, including its Mobile Share Value plans, which start at $70 a month for two lines. Customers will receive up to $695 in bill credits for the free phone spread out over 30 monthly bills for the second device, according to the company. Customers must pay the taxes on both phones at the time of the original sale.

Customers who preordered their S7 and S7 Edge phones are also eligible for the offer, as will be AT&T's business customers, according to the company. AT&T customers can also get up to $650 in credits per line to move their mobile phone accounts to AT&T from a competitor under the offer.

The latest Galaxy S7 Edge and S7 handsets are water-resistant and are powered by Qualcomm quad-core 2.15GHz/1.6GHz processors for U.S. users and include 4GB of LPDDR4 memory, 32GB of built-in storage, microSD expansion slots, a 12-megapixel dual-pixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. The Galaxy S7 Edge features a 5.5-inch quad-HD Super AMOLED display and a screen that wraps around both right and left edges of the device, while the Galaxy S7 has a 5.1-inch quad-HD Super AMOLED display.