After making lame excuses to the FCC for their suddenly doubled ETF, Verizon has now partially backtracked: The ETF is only doubled for phones people actually like! Cancel those dumb featurephones whenever you want! You're welcome, America.
Basically, the new $350 ETF applies only to smartphones, which they seem to have trouble defining but which is easy for you and I to understand. The Droid, Droid Eris, and all BlackBerry handsets are subject to the hiked fee, while dumbphones with dumb names like the EnV and Krave will stick with the old $175 fee.
It's still ridiculously high: As Adam wrote,
What they don't address is why they're justified in charging a fee that ends up being far higher than the difference between the actual cost of a phone and the subsidized price, especially if the contract is cancelled many months in. Isn't that all the ETF is supposed to cover?
So thanks but no thanks, Verizon. Charging less for phones we don't care about doesn't help your case. [Electronista]