On its way to the altar with MetroPCS, T-Mobile is perhaps trying to add a last-minute touch of glamour, something that's been a bit lacking the last few years. At long last, it's getting the iPhone -- and offering it without a contract, no less.
Not only will T-Mobile be offering the iPhone without a contract, it's also selling it more cheaply than its rivals -- just $100 upfront, plus $20 a month for two years. Not having a contract means customers can dump T-Mobile before the two years is up, but they'll still have to make the $20 payments until the loan is paid off.
Consumers can also use unlocked phones on the T-Mobile network, something most carriers don't allow.
T-Mobile says it will also be offering other high-end smartphones, like the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and the BlackBerry Z10 with similar payment planes.
T-Mobile says this is all part of its new "Un-carrier" attitude. It's trying to act less like a wireless carrier and more like a customer-focused retailer, saying it wants to "address consumer frustration with the unnecessary cost and complexity of wireless."
“These bold moves serve notice that T-Mobile is canceling its membership in the out-of-touch wireless club,” said John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile USA, Inc. “This is an industry filled with ridiculously confusing contracts, limits on how much data you can use or when you can upgrade, and monthly bills that make little sense. As America’s Un-carrier, we are changing all of that and bringing common sense to wireless.”
Legere said the Un-carrier campaign includes:
- simplifying its lineup of consumer rate plans to one "incredibly affordable plan" for unlimited talk, text and Web;
- ensuring that customers never have to sign another annual service contract through T-Mobile retail outlets; and
- enabling customers to get the most popular smartphones whenever they want for the lowest upfront cost.
Federal regulators earlier this month gave their blessing to the merger of MetroPCS and T-Mobile USA, potentially creating a bigger and more powerful player in the wireless arena that's now dominated by Verizon and AT&T Wireless.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said the deal would boost competition by creating the fourth-largest competitor, after Sprint. The Justice Department has also signed off on the transaction.
T-Mobile USA's parent company, Deutsche Telekom, will own 74% of the combined company.