All cell phones come with rechargeable batteries, but these batteries can only go through so many cycles before they fail to hold a charge any longer. If you’re a heavy user, you’ll find that your battery is starting to fail on you well before you’re due for a handset upgrade. It seems that at least one carrier is feeling your pain.
US Cellular is planning to launch what it calls the Battery Swap Program in which customers can come into any store and get a brand new cell phone battery for free. This will only be for US Cellular subscribers, naturally, but you can waltz in with your dead or dying battery and they’ll hand you a new fully-charged one. And it won’t cost you a penny.
Executive vice president and COO Jay Ellison says that they are “offering this service to help our customers stay connected.” A cell phone with a dead battery doesn’t do you very much good. You could go and buy a new battery on your own, but this can prove to be a somewhat pricey proposition depending on your handset.
There are restrictions to this Battery Swap Program, of course. You’ll need to have purchased that phone within the last 18 months. That’s just fine, because anything beyond that, you’d be due for a hardware upgrade anyhow. Since this is a “free” service, though, I imagine the costs will essentially be passed onto the subscriber base at large.