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The fees usually drop based on how far along you are in the contract, and they supposedly help keep the carriers from losing money on the fancy phones you purchase at less than retail price. (That’s how they justify the fees to the Federal Communications Commission.) Of course, many consumers want to upgrade to newer technology within a couple of years, and the carriers encourage it with more discounts that lock in new contracts.
It’s a vicious cycle, but one The Wall Street Journal says you might be able to break — without breaking the bank in the process. Avoiding contracts in the first place is one cheaper option, but here’s what you can do if you’re already stuck in one:
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