In 2013, Verizon joined AT&T in offering an early upgrade program, called Edge. Verizon did this because of the growing movement by carriers to move away from smartphone subsidies and toward device payment plans and their desire to get as many unlimited data customers off their plans and onto data plans with caps.

The problem with both upgrade programs was, and for the most part still is, that while carriers were eliminating phone subsidies, they were also continuing to force the majority of customers to pay near the same amount for services, ie paying twice for the phone. To be fair, they have both made changes to their upgrade programs both helping and hurting the consumer. For example, Verizon has made multiple changes to how long a customer has to wait between upgrades. This means that customers have to wait longer to be eligible to upgrade. On the other hand, Verizon has increased data for most plans.

Now, as Gotta Be Mobile reports, Verizon is killing off their Edge plan as they begin moving towards another device payment method, one which removes two-year contracts. On Verizon’s web-site, the Edge program is not available to those wanting to buy a new iPhone/Android smartphone.

Instead of Verizon Edge, customers can buy a new phone on a Verizon Device Payment Plan. This is already live on the Verizon website, and it is rolling out to retail stores who will update signage in the coming days. One source speaking to Gotta Be Mobile shares that this change is likely in preparation for killing off two-year contracts in the very near future. – Gotta Be Mobile

Under this new Device Payment plan, Verizon will allow buyers to swap upgrades to get a phone on a payment plan (meaning, you can borrow an upgrade from another line on your plan). This was not allowed under the Verizon Edge plan. Verizon will also allow an assumption of liability on the new Device Payment plan (meaning, you can give a phone’s remaining payments to another person).