No, it’s not April Fool’s Day. I checked.
Ting is a prepaid MVNO operating on Sprint’s network, and while they’re in my queue of providers to provide an in-depth analysis on at a later date, this is too good not to report: if you break your current contract and switch to Ting, they will pay for your Early Termination Fee (ETF) up to $350 per line.
T-Mobile just won’t stop increasing their per-dollar value, and that’s okay with me. Set to launch on January 28th, T-Mobile’s $50 Monthly4G rate plan will increase its data allotment from a meager 100 MB to much more useful 500 MB. This change will happen automatically for anyone currently subscribing to that option, and there is no interaction required. Your first billing cycle after January 28th will allow you up to 500 MB of high-speed data before 2G throttling occurs.
[Editor's Note: This is a guest post brought to you by Cody Toombs. He commented on another blog with a shorter version of this post, and I reached out to him asking if he'd like to elaborate and appear as a guest poster on this blog. Thank you Cody for writing this beautiful post! -Aaron]
MetroPCS’s has launched a new “Simple plans for a simpler life” marketing campaign. Not to be confused with Simple Mobile, the fifth-largest U.S. cellular provider has simplified their offerings and generally increased the data allotment for each option.
T-Mobile has now successfully completed their refarming efforts in 46 total metro markets. Their last network modernization announcement was a massive year-end push and left 2012 with excellent progress. This year’s first announcement isn’t quite as expansive, but it still brings us one step closer to full network refarming and modernization. Customers in the Denver, Los Angeles, San Diego and Virginia Beach, Va. metro areas should now experience the benefits of T-Mobile’s enhancements.
The absence of device subsidies is typically the largest deterrent to switching to prepaid service, but it’s also why it’s a cheaper option. As I’ve explained before, device subsidies are bad. They cheapen the view of our expensive high-tech devices and give an illusion that regardless of the tech inside, anything more than $100 or $200 is “way too expensive” for a phone — except they’re not really phones, they’re pocket-sized computers (in many cases with better hardware than the average desktop or laptop computers) with a phone application.
This is an interesting metric noted by David Beren of TmoNews. During a telecommunications conference in Las Vegas yesterday, T-Mobile CEO John Legere mentioned the company currently serves 1.9 million iPhones, with an additional 100K devices added every month. That 100K devices may be a little conservative however, since in early December, that number was 1.7 million iPhones for a net gain of 200K in a month.
We get it, Sprint. You’re still relevant. You’ve never lost that truly unlimited philosophy. You’ve been around for a while, and lots of people use your network. But more and more people are discovering the benefits of prepaid service, and that rubs you the wrong way somehow. You have plenty of prepaid MVNOs on your network – Boost Mobile, Republic Wireless, Virgin Mobile, Ting – and they’re all popular in their own right. Of course it sounds like a great idea to launch your own no-contract offering. “Sprint As You Go” is a somewhat cutesy name, for better or worse. But uh… did you do any market research first? Here, I’ll help by telling you what you’ve already done wrong:
I’ll admit it: As a blogger, I’m tired of putting quotes around “unlimited” in many of my articles, combining it with an asterisk and a footnote, or a set of exclusions in parentheses. “Unlimited” is not the same as unlimited. “Unlimited” means unlimited, but only for a certain amount, after which it’s limited, so it isn’t really unlimited. It’s confusing. There was a time when unlimited really meant unlimited, and T-Mobile is looking to bring that back with their latest change to their Monthly4G plans.