In a press release issued today, T-Mobile outlined its plans for Android for the latter portion of this year. And those plans pretty much begin and end with the word "Google." The biggest of the deals is that Google's Messages app will now be the standard, default SMS and RCS platform for all T-Mobile Android phones. But there are plenty of other nuggets in the press release, too.
T-Mobile outlined a multi-tier approach to more visibly feature Google services across its lineup, including:
- Google Messages will be the default SMS program on all new T-Mo Android phones
- More Pixels: "T-Mobile plans to expand the array of Pixel and other Android devices the company will carry."
- A greater reliance on Google One/Google Drive. Reading between the lines: this could mean Drive is the default backup solution, and that T-Mobile may offer discounted subscriptions to extra storage via Google One.
- Heavy promotion of YouTube TV: according to two different press releases, YouTube TV will now become T-Mobile's "premium TV solution." TVision is on its way out.
T-Mobile customers will be eligible for $10 off on YouTube TV every month. That appears to be the case for any T-Mobile customer, whether you pay for T-Mobile wireless, home internet, or the TVision cable-cutting service.
Oh, and about that: since TVision is ostensibly a competitor to YouTube TV, TVision will be shutting down on April 29th. If you currently use the TVision HUB set-top box, it'll be updated with software to function as a YouTube TV player. If you don't want to pay for YouTube TV, T-Mobile is offering Philo as a cheaper alternative. The same discount will apply, bringing the service down to $10 a month. The YouTube TV $10 discount is available to current TVision subscribers early—check your T-Mobile account on the web for instructions.
That $10 discount seems to be indefinite: as long as you're a customer of both T-Mobile and YouTube TV, you get it cheaper than everyone else. That could be a crucial advantage for YouTube TV in the brutally competitive streaming TV market, especially as its customers get frustrated with higher and higher prices.
The more esoteric portions of T-Mobile's announcement, particularly the bit about greater support for Pixel devices, will have to wait until later this year.