05
Apr
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T-Mobile is starting to get aggressive with customer acquisition and retention, and in light of less than stellar fiscal performance and the news of the AT&T deal, it's not hard to see why.

On April 13, the carrier will begin offering a new off-contract smartphone plan, and it's a steal - for $59.99 a month (down from $79.99), you'll get unlimited talk, text and data*. But, there are some significant catches. The first is that you'll have to pay full retail for your phone of choice - the Even More Plus plan is a month-to-month affair.

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The second is arguably worse - your data usage is technically unlimited, but after the first 2GB (as opposed to the current 5GB) your data speeds will be throttled down until the next billing cycle. Ouch. And there's no way to increase your data cap, apparently (aside from switching to AT&T).

Additionally, T-Mobile will be launching new pricing for its on-contract Even More Unlimited plan, down to a Sprint-beating $79.99 a month. It's clear T-Mobile anticipated the AT&T deal giving it a stigma among new customers, warding off the unwary - but this kind of pricing may just prove too tempting to resist.

How long this deal will last is unknown - but AT&T has got to be loving it. Why? T-Mobile's gains in the marketplace may end up being AT&T's, if all goes to plan. AT&T and Verizon Wireless have both long been harangued with complaints that their plans are inherently designed to be unfriendly to or take advantage of penny-pinching consumers, making it difficult for either to capture the emerging budget-smartphone market.

Sprint and T-Mobile have generally become the antithesis to this perceived strategy, in the eyes of consumers at least, and many of their customers stay with them only because of their highly competitive pricing.

After the AT&T deal, it would seem logical that many T-Mobile users might defect to Sprint, who remain free of the AT&Taint. But, if T-Mobile snaps up a bunch of new customers before the merger deal goes through, AT&T gets more subscribers as part of its deal, and will probably heavily incentivize former T-Mobilers into coming along for the ride.

T-Mo News 1, 2

David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • Snafu77

    I'm with Tmo now and this doesn't change anything for me. I'm going to Sprint when my contract is up. Anything gained now will vanish when ATT gets the deal approved.

    • Tzar.V.O.R

      I'm with you. I really wanted that Pyramid too. But now I'm going to Sprint. Guess I'll just get the Evo 3D. Not giving AT&T a dime after they throttled my home net connection.

    • Hernandez

      Contact me when you are ready to switch!

  • Jon

    Yeah, this is a bad deal. One that phone you buy at full price will not work With att. Two, snice you are not on a contract when the meger goes through att can just raise the prices up to what they charge.

  • adidas101

    1st of all ur article is wrong. This 59.99 plan is 500 mins unlimited text n web. I just talked to them because I do have their even more plus unlimited everything. Its still 79.99 so fix that. Please. 2nd at&t is already racking up prices. Sprint might b the lesser of the evils but not any better. Atleast with GSM u can switch phones. Cdma can't.

    • Mike

      Lol maybe you should read. It says APRIL 13TH

    • JJ

      What are you talking about you can't switch phones with sprint? With sprint all you do is go online, put in your phones esn and switch. You might not be able to do it by just popping in a card but you can still switch. Also for what you get with sprint compared to att how is sprint not better? Yes, the data speeds might be faster but who cares about data speed when every couple of miles your data connection drops? At least with sprint its a consistent connection.

  • paul

    Comparable to simple mobiles 60 unlimited talk/text/web and they're a tmobile mvno. I was going to leave tmobile for simple mobile, get to keep the same phone and save monthly. But simple mobiles unlimited data technically is only 1gb transfer, then I think they throttle u. So this same 60 mo deal w tmobile prepaid and u get 2gb before throttling may be better, except u pay taxes/fcc/etc w/ tmobilw, its all included w/ simple.

    • GoPadge

      I'd consider Simple Mobile if they had better coverage. The East Coast is fairly good, but the Mid-West and North West coverage is pretty lousy. Sure, 95% of my phone usages is in covered territory, but that 5% is nowhere I'd want to be without service.

  • lincthra

    Actually, you can already get the 1500 for $59.99 Even More Plus Plan so long as you do it through the Tmo website instead of at a store. I went to a store, didn't like the prices/deposit/contract. I came home to double check prices on their site and was able to get the deal. I chatted with a rep with their site chat thing to figure out why. After a few minutes of them being silent when I asked if it was a web-only deal (trying to figure it out, I'm guessing), they came back and said yes.
    Not sure I would go for this deal without a phone, but I already have a phone (Nexus One) and have simply had no service for a few months due to being broke. So all I had to do was buy a sim activation pack on their site for $10 as the 'phone' to go with my plan. Grand total I spent $85 (I opted for adding $12 for overnight shipping. I'm not patient when it comes to electronics).
    Mind you, when AT&T takes over, I may have to drop 10 and punt, BUT I'm not on a contract, didn't have to pay a deposit, and didn't have to buy a new phone when I already had one I love using. If nothing else it buys me some time to save up to pay some other carrier's outlandish deposit fees.
    If you already have a phone, this seems a good way to go if you are strapped for cash.
    I don't use my phone as a phone; some carrier out there needs an unlimited text/web with ZERO (or under 100) minutes for cheaper for us heavy texters/web users!

  • lincthra

    EDIT: Just checked their site again. It may be that it's presence already was a mistake. My shipping info still says the 1500, but their site now says 500 again when trying to sign up for a new plan.

  • Andre

    A month ago, I would've jumped at this, even with throttling above 2GB and full retail pricing for phones. I'm not a heavy 3G data user and would rather pay full price for a phone than be on contract.

    Unfortunately this can now only be viewed as customer acquisition for AT&T, where exceeding 2GB means paying at least another $10, where sideloading is prohibited, where tethering requires an additional plan.

  • lilafc

    I must be tired, I thought part of that article read AT&Taint .... LOL !

  • pax

    All carriers suck.

  • TMOUSER

    SPRINT's EVDO network is way faster than AT&T come on now!

    SPRINT doesn't throttle and has the most experience... They were THE FIRST of all carriers