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T-Mobile Go5G Next vs Magenta: Finally a plan worth switching to?

What does Go5G Next bring to the table and is it worth it?
By
August 24, 2023
T Mobile logo on sign
Kris Carlon / Android Authority

In April, T-Mobile introduced two new plans, dubbed Go5G and Go5G Plus. These plans weren’t dramatically different from the existing Magenta and Magenta Max offerings. The biggest changes were adding more hotspot data and access to killer deals previously reserved for new customers only. T-Mobile isn’t done yet, as it recently announced a third plan called Go5G Next. This new plan goes into affect today. 

This new plan is almost literally identical to Go5G Plus, but it has a secret weapon that helps it stand out: yearly upgrades. In this guide, we take a look at T-Mobile Go5G Next vs Magenta and the other pre-existing T-Mobile plans. Is this finally a plan worth switching to for Magenta subscribers?

T-Mobile Go5G Next vs Go 5G Plus: Are there any differences besides yearly upgrades?

Go5G NextGo5G PlusMagenta MaxGo5GMagenta
Cost
Go5G Next
Prices per line:

$100 for one line
$85 for two lines
$60 for three lines
$56.25 for four lines
Go5G Plus
Prices per line:

$90 for one line
$75 for two lines
$50 for three lines
$46 for four lines
Magenta Max
Prices per line:

$85 for one line
$70 for two lines
$57 for three lines
$50 for four lines
Go5G
Prices per line:

$75 for one line
$65 for two lines
$43 for three lines
$39 for four lines
Magenta
Prices per line:

$70 for one line
$60 for two lines
$47 for three lines
$40 for four lines
Unlimited Talk & Text
Go5G Next
Yes
Go5G Plus
Yes
Magenta Max
Yes
Go5G
Yes
Magenta
Yes
Unlimited 4G Data
Go5G Next
Unlimited 5G & 4G LTE with Unlimited Premium Data
Go5G Plus
Unlimited 5G & 4G LTE with Unlimited Premium Data
Magenta Max
Unlimited 5G & 4G LTE with Unlimited Premium Data
Go5G
Unlimited 5G & 4G LTE with 100GB of Premium Data
Magenta
Unlimited 5G & 4G LTE with 100GB of Premium Data
5G data included
Go5G Next
Yes
Go5G Plus
Yes
Magenta Max
Yes
Go5G
Yes
Magenta
Yes
Mobile Hotspot
Go5G Next
50GB hotspot data
Go5G Plus
50GB of hotspot data
Magenta Max
40GB of 4G, then unlimited 3G
Go5G
15GB of high-speed hotspot data, then unlimited 3G
Magenta
5GB of 4G LTE, then unlimited 3G
Netflix perk?
Go5G Next
Netflix Basic, one screen for one account, or Netflix Standard for those with 2+ lines
Go5G Plus
Netflix Basic, one SD screen for one accounts.
Netflix Standard, two HD screens for two or more acccounts
Magenta Max
Netflix Basic, one SD screen for one accounts.
Netflix Standard, two HD screens for two or more acccounts
Go5G
Netflix Basic, one SD screen
Magenta
Netflix Basic, one SD screen for two or more accounts
Apple TV perk?
Go5G Next
Included
Go5G Plus
Included
Magenta Max
Included
Go5G
Apple TV+ free for 6 months
Magenta
Apple TV+ free for 6 months
Unlimited video streaming
Go5G Next
Up to 4K UHD streaming
Go5G Plus
Up to 4K UHD streaming
Magenta Max
Up to 4K UHD streaming
Go5G
SD Streaming
Magenta
SD streaming
Extra perks
Go5G Next
- Phone upgrades in as little as 6 months
- Special deals normally reserved for new customers
Go5G Plus
Special deals normally reserved for new customers
Magenta Max
N/A
Go5G
Special deals normally reserved for new customers
Magenta
N/A

As you can see, Go5G Next has almost nothing different to offer from Go5G Plus. The only exception is the ability to upgrade your phone once a year. Premium data, hotspot data, and all other perks remain identical. Regardless of the number of lines, you’ll always pay around $10 more per line than you would for Go5G Plus.

How Go5G Next yearly upgrades work

T-Mobile Go5G Next allows you to upgrade your phone in as little as six months; the only catch is you have to pay for half of it first. Unlike AT&T and Verizon, T-Mobile phone terms only stretch for 24 months, meaning most folks can upgrade within 12 months of purchasing a device.

Still, there might be reasons why you’d want to upgrade earlier, like if a newer model adds some killer features you’ve always wanted. The good news is you can make additional payments if you want to get to that half-mark faster than twelve months.

Once you’ve paid at least half of your phone and have been an owner for at least six months, you can trade in your existing device and apply it toward purchasing a new one. There are no limits on what devices are eligible, and so this promotion can be used on any iPhone or Android phone.

Is the yearly upgrade perk worth the additional costs?

go5g next (1)
For most T-Mobile subscribers, it’s probably not worth paying $120 more a year over Go 5G Plus. According to T-Mobile’s own survey, about 10% of subscribers feel upgrading is a majority priority. So unless you’re part of that 10%, you’re paying extra for something you won’t use.

But if you DO like having the latest phone every 6-12 months? You’ll pay $120 more for the Next plan, but you’ll essentially be forgiven half of your phone’s payment. That said, you’ll also have to trade it in and have a new payment on your hands. So really, it depends on how much your phone cost in the first place and how much you’d get if you paid it off and sold it directly through something like eBay or Swappa.

For this thought experiment, let’s say you bought the 128GB iPhone 14 last year for $799. You’ve had it for a year now and, in that time, have paid for about half of it, leaving you with $399.50 left to pay off.

You have two options:

  1. Trade-in with T-Mobile and your Next plan, they’ll pay off the remaining balance, and then you’ll get a new phone with a new payment.
  2. Pay off your iPhone’s remaining $399.50 and sell it on eBay or Swappa yourself. Based on my research, you’ll get around $100 after you factor in what you still owe to T-Mobile. You can then use that $100 toward a new phone.

In a way, option 2 is cheaper. After all, you’re basically getting the same deal, but you’ll get $100 toward the new phone and skip paying the $120 premium the Next plan charges over the Plus plan. Of course, the second option ignores possible promotions and discounts that might only apply if you went through the Next plan, but I’d argue you’re still likely going to end up in the same spot at worst as far as an investment. 

Again, we’d advise really thinking about the new phone you’re getting and how much trade-in credit you’d get versus selling it yourself. Devices like iPhones retain value for longer, while many Android phones see resale values fall fast. In other words, it might be worth it for some phones but not for others.

Of course, you can’t compete with the convenience of T-Mobile 5G Go Next. Not everyone wants to jump through hoops to just barely make a savings. Ultimately, Go5G Next is a good plan for those who like to switch phones often, but we’d recommend doing your homework before jumping.

Do you have to upgrade from Magenta to a Go5G plan?

T Mobile logo at MWC 2022
Kris Carlon / Android Authority

Absolutely not! T-Mobile still offers its Magenta plans even to new subscribers, though it’s pretty clear the company’s main focus is Go5G. While it’s certainly possible the Magenta tier could be phased out in the future, the good news is that it wouldn’t matter if you’re already a subscriber. 

T-Mobile will grandfather in old plans and phase them out slowly over time, so even if Magenta goes away, you have no absolute need to switch. 

Okay, but should you upgrade from Magenta to a Go5G plan, including this new next offering? For now, we don’t think there is any reason to upgrade to Magenta. The plans are so similar you should only consider an upgrade unless you are really attracted to Go5G’s larger hotspot data pool, its special deals, or the ability to trade in a phone yearly. 

Is the new T-Mobile Go5G Next plan worth the upgrade?

1521 votes