Google hits Nexus One with its own $350 early termination fee, on top of T-Mobile’s

Looks like the Unhappy Nexus One owners club is about to expand.  Turns out that Google is applying its own $350 early termination fee to its latest Android-powered phone, in addition to T-Mobile’s own ETF (which can be up to $200).  Worse yet, since Google collects your credit card information upon purchase, the ETF is automatically charged to your card.

So if you decide to cancel after the two-week trial period but before 120 days have passed, you could be hit with a $550 bill.  T-Mobile’s ETF makes sense, as it subsidizes the phone’s up-front cost when you buy it on contract, but why does Google have its own “Equipment Recovery Fee”?  So much for making smartphone purchases simpler, Google.  More details below.

From the Nexus One’s user agreement:

You agree to pay Google an equipment subsidy recovery fee (the “Equipment Recovery Fee”) equal to the difference between the full price of the Nexus handheld device without service plan and the price you paid for the Nexus handheld device if you cancel your wireless plan prior to 120 days of continuous wireless service. For example, if the full price of the Nexus handheld device without service plan was $529 USD and the price you paid for the Nexus handheld device was $179 USD with a service plan, the Equipment Recovery Fee you pay will be $350 USD in the event you cancel within the first 120 days of carrier service. The Equipment Recovery Fee is equal to the line item in your confirmation email setting forth the discount on the full priced Nexus handheld device related to your carrier service plan activiation. You authorize Google to charge the Equipment Recovery Fee directly to your credit card, or other payment method used to purchase the Nexus handheld device, upon cancellation of your wireless plan. You will not be charged the Equipment Recovery Fee if you return your Nexus handheld device to Google within the 14 day Return Policy period as set forth below.

You agree that the Equipment Recovery Fee is not a penalty but is for liquidated damages Google will incur as a result of such cancellation. These damages may include, but are not limited to, loss of compensation and administrative costs associated with such cancellation or changing of wireless service provider(s), market changes, and changes in ownership. Please note that the Equipment Recovery Fee is imposed by Google and not your chosen carrier and is in addition to any early termination fees that may be charged by your chosen carrier in connection with termination of your wireless plan prior to fulfillment of your chosen carrier’s service agreement term.

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