February 8, 2010 | by Andrew Kameka
Early-termination fees are standard practice in the mobile phone contract world, but the Nexus One’s “equipment recovery fee” was a new and arguably exorbiant fee. Google required that anyone buying a subsidized Nexus One pay $350 if the contract was canceled within the first 120 days, and that was on top of the $200 fee charged by T-Mobile. Though it was understandable that the unique nature of the N1′s sale required Google to recover some of its losses in the event of a broken contract, a $550 total ETF on a $529 phone just didn’t sit well with customers.
Google has moved to ease that burden by lowering its ERF to only $150. Nexus One owners who walk away from their contract will get a $200 break on the total fee paid thanks to Google’s recent terms of service changes. The Wall Street Journal points out that the change was made in January, arguably as a result of the FCC’s prodding into the practice of charging customers ETF’s. Whatever the reason, the Nexus One has become slightly more appealing.