“This is how competition works: last night AT&T unveiled ‘AT&T Next,’ a new subscription plan that lets AT&T customers trade in and upgrade their phones or tablets every 12 months with no up-front down payment on each phone,” Sascha Segan reports for PC Magazine.

“AT&T Next comes on the heels of T-Mobile’s ‘Jump’ plan, which lets subscribers upgrade twice a year,” Segan reports. “Verizon is reportedly working on a similar annual upgrade plan… ‘VZ Edge.'”

Segan reports, “To use AT&T Next, AT&T subscribers agree to pay a monthly fee for their device on top of their regular AT&T service plan. Monthly fees range from $15-$50… You’re on the hook for 20 payments. After 12 payments, you can trade in your device and get a new one, and the clock starts again. There are no activation or upgrade fees. After 20 payments, the device is paid off. There doesn’t appear to be a contract for service, only for the device itself. If you want out, you can pay off the device price early.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]