... so I ordered the HP Mini 1151r netbook from Verizon on 09/03. It was offered for $199 with a 24 month contract. I received the netbook on or about 09/07, and paid my first month's bill 0n 10/03. On 10/15, I login to see what my next bill is going to be, and am shocked to see that Verizon is now offering the Gateway LT netbook for $149 with contract.
The HP Mini comes with a small 80gb hard drive and a 3 cell battery. The Gateway comes with 160gb hard drive and a 6 cell battery!!! The small hard drive doesn't bother me so much, as I store most of my files on my desktop computer anyway. But the 3-cell battery is a joke, rarely even approaching the "projected" charge life of 3 hours.
So I guess I'm stuck with paying 22 months for exactly HALF the computer anyone else can purchase now. What a crock.
I doubt I'm the only one in this situation. At the very least, Verizon should offer some discounted upgrade plan for recent purchasers. Not doing so seems a little unammurican to me.
I have owned the 1151, 2140 and the 5101. If you are a serious user, I recommend selling your 1151 on eBay and picking up a 5101 with a 6 cell battery. You can get a used Miff and have an outstanding setup, I love mine. I am not a fan of the Gateway. I can tell you that Verizon has already subsidized a piece of equipement in exchange for your service agreement. They are not obligated to subsidize every new thing that comes out for you. I hope you find something that works.