Sep 132012

AT&T announced earlier that it would allow customers on a grandfathered unlimited data plan to keep their plan even when paying a subsidized price for the iPhone 5. The nation’s largest carrier looks to take things a different way, however. A Verizon representative confirmed with 9to5mac this evening that customers will only be able to keep their unlimited data plan if they pay full price for the iPhone 5 ($649 for 16GB). Furthermore, existing Verizon customers can keep their old Nationwide Usage Based plan. They will not be forced to switch to one of Verizon’s new Share Everything Plans when buying the iPhone 5 on a two-year contract.

New customers will be forced to go the shared data plan route, though.

If you are an existing customer and want to keep your Nationwide Usage Based plan, you can keep your plan, purchase the iPhone at the discounted price with a 2 yr customer agreement. If you have a Verizon Wireless unlimited data plan, you can pay full price for your iPhone 5 and keep your unlimited data plan.

Only customers who are new to Verizon Wireless will select from Share Everything Plans.

The nation’s third-largest carrier, Sprint, also detailed its iPhone 5 launch this evening. In a press release, seen below the fold, Sprint said it would begin pre-orders at 12:01 a.m. PST on Sept. 14. We assume this is the same time for all parties making the iPhone 5 available. A 12:01 a.m. pre-order time took place for the iPhone 4S last year. In addition, in its press release, Sprint touted its unlimited data plan, which may be a serious draw to some customers. Pricing for the iPhone 5 remains the same across all carriers: $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB, and $399 for 64GB  (on a two-year contract) There is also T-Mobile…it launched a serious “save $1,200″ advertising campaign in the hopes of attracting customers with unlocked iPhones.

For those who want to pick up the device in-store, Apple will open its retail stores at 8 a.m. on Sept. 21. All online orders will also be shipped that day. With pre-orders close to two days away and the recently released information from every carrier, now comes the serious question: which carrier will you go with? 

According to the Wall Street Journal, Verizon will make FaceTime calls over 3G available on all data plans (that you can get your hands on).

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