How To Upgrade Your Sprint PCS Phone In Nine Easy Steps

by john on September 9, 2006

Having upgraded my phone today I consider myself a newly minted expert in the art of cell phone upgrading – especially a Sprint upgrade. Here is my easy nine step plan for performing a Sprint phone upgrade:

  1. Be a long standing customer (over 5 years is preferred) and be sure that you always pay your bills on time and have too many minutes in your plan, to be sure they are making a good margin on you.
  2. First go to their website, because of course that would be a good place to start for something as simple as a phone upgrade, particularly when you have had the same phone for 5 years (see step 1). Here you will click on the very convenient option for checking whether your phone is eligible for a discounted upgrade and you will find your are in fact eligible, hurrah. It suggests you visit your friendly local Sprint store to get said upgrade, but you want to take care of it this morning and you are stuck at home so you go back to the web store.
  3. After seeing the web store you will note that new customers can get the same phone you wanted to upgrade to for free, after instant savings and web savings. Plus no shipping. Cool. But after looking around you’ll realize you can only buy new phones on the website, you can’t upgrade, so you go to the next step.
  4. Being a progressive technology professional you use Skype (free Skypeout until the end of the year!) to call the Sprint customer service line. After spending 2 minutes completing various prompts you will get hung up on. Try it again to verify the same thing happens. Then try again on a landline to once again verify the calls are just dumping out the backend.
  5. Being a progressive technology professional you notice they have online chat so you will try that. Nobody will answer. Ah, you notice that their hours of operation are posted and they aren’t open until 9:00 CST. Well that explains the calls just being hung up – nobody there to answer them. Very nice.
  6. So now you webchat again during working hours and you learn that while you are in fact chatting with a customer service rep they can only help you with tasks that you can accomplish on the web, and upgrading a phone isn’t one of those tasks, so they can’t help.  You need to call customer service.
  7. So you call customer service, and you are pleased to see that now that they are open the calls don’t just hang up they actually get answered. By someone who tells you she can absolutely help you upgrade your phone. Here is what we need to do – I will sell you a phone at full price, including tax, and then you call another person to extend the contract and they will give you your money back. Isn’t that convenient?
  8. At this point you ask whether it makes sense that as a long standing customer (see step 1) it is very difficult for you to do a simple task like upgrade your phone, whereas if you were a new customer you could get it all taken care of by now. You will receive no apology and when you complain about this again you will be told goodbye.
  9. So here is how you get your phone upgraded at Sprint. You call customer service again but this time you tell them to cancel your service as you are moving to Verizon. At this point you will get a very helpful person (Thanks Beth!) who will not only give you the phone upgrade for free, no shipping, no tax, she’ll help you optimize your minute plan, she’ll make sure the phone gets there in 2 days, she’ll clean up your account record of all the old bad data they have in there and she will be a very friendly and empowered customer service professional who will really make you feel good about doing business with Sprint.

Or, you could just skip to step nine. That’s what I’ll do next time.


jonathan March 3, 2007 at 10:35 pm

Really, this is about what happened for me.
Though several people assured me they would take care of me, even after I suggested I’d:

“been with Spring for nearly 10 years and that could change tomorrow morning.”

Over 2.5 hours on the phone with these clowns, about 8 calls, perhaps 6.

During which I learned that the phone they shipped, wrong model by the way, was hot because it was on a “new” second phone number they set up for me without permission.


Makes me feel better about myself when I have a tiny bit of trouble handling an ebay transaction.

Lee August 1, 2007 at 5:43 pm

I was pulling hair out of my head trying to speak to the CSRs, all of whom had hung up on me. I have been a Sprint customer for years, and I wanted to upgrade to a new phone but only pay the new member price. I had upgraded previously 18 months ago but did not get any discounts (just bought the phone at retail price). The Sprint store, and then nearly all CSRs I spoke to informed me that I was only eligible for $75 off the full price of the new phone (even though I hadn’t had a rebate in 5 years) because I had purchased my new phone only 18 months ago (without a rebate). I told them how moronic it was, but all I got was the runaround. Well, I was searching the web for a customer service number that might be more useful, and I saw this website. I immediately followed “step 9,” and everything was solved. The amount of time and aggravation needed to get something so simple and logical done is astounding.

Hasan June 29, 2008 at 1:16 pm

it was awesome what you said. Sprint is doing the same thing to EVERYBODY. I got in so much trouble while trying to upgrade my dads phone. it is horrible.

tiffany July 24, 2008 at 12:51 pm

funny that your google adds up top are both for Sprint service and products.

Phone Prank October 1, 2008 at 2:22 pm

Check out Spoofcard – then you don’t even need a cell phone!

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