T-Mobile USA’s New Plans Show You What The Handset Subsidy Costs
T-Mobile USA‘s new rate plans were announced today: Even More and Even More Plus. The Even More plans look like a rather traditional plan with a subsidized handset and 2-year contract with unlimited voice starting at $59.99/mo, unlimited text for $10/mo, and unlimited data for either $10 or $30/mo depending on whether or not you have a smartphone. That’s not an unreasonable deal.
What’s more interesting to me is the Even More Plus plan. The unlimited voice part of that plan is $49.99/mo. Unlimited text is another $10/mo and unlimited data is another $20/mo. The handsets on this plan can either be bought outright from T-Mobile at full price, bought elsewhere (so long as it’s an unlocked GSM handset), or “financed” over 4 or 20 months at zero percent interest. And, of course, there is no contract (unless, of course, you transfer to this rateplan from a plan that did have a contract).
For the first time, a US consumer can clearly see what the handset subsidy costs. A customer can run the numbers for themselves and decide which is cheaper: buying a handset outright or paying $10 extra per month as part of their rateplan. For those customers who don’t want a contract, but can’t afford the upfront cost of a handset, you can finance it and see just how much per month you’re paying for it. And if you buy the handset elsewhere (or have a rather sizable stash of them like I do), then you get a discount on service. Everyone wins.
As cool as I think these rateplans are, I’m pretty much stuck to AT&T because of the iPhone. I don’t expect AT&T and Verizon Wireless will follow suit on these rateplans, either. It’s a shame, because these new T-Mobile plans are some of the most consumer-friendly rateplans I’ve seen in a long time.