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T-Mobile says 2G speeds are enough for global travel
When T-Mobile began to launch their “Uncarrier” brand refresh, their third phase (after eliminating handset subsidies followed by their Jump upgrade program) involved offering free overseas data roaming in more than 100 countries for subscribers of T-Mobile’s Simple Choice plans. Those roaming in the countries would have the ability to use T-Mobile’s 2G EDGE network with speeds around 128 kbps.
Last month, T-Mobile released a survey that found customers abroad:
- Call three times as much
- Text seven times more often
- Use 28 times more data than they did previously
- 53% more now roam on cellular in supported countries than before the current plans.
T-Mobile’s executive vice president of B2B, Drew Kelton, admitted recently that even though T-Mobile has received some criticism for the 2G roaming speeds, fewer than 1% of T-Mobile’s business customers abroad are choosing to upgrade to higher speeds.
T-Mobile offers Speed Passes for their 3G HSPA+ network access. The plans range from 100 MB for one day at $15 to a two-week, 500 MB pass for $50.
Over the last few years, global roaming charges have been the source of many customer horror stories. Even though T-Mobile’s speeds may be slow overseas, it is better for consumers to be guaranteed of what they will be charged when they go to different countries.
Who could forget (didn’t mean to cite just AT&T stories):
- A customer receiving an $11,000 bill from AT&T because he browsed the web and checked his email while in Canada
- A family of three receiving a near $5,000 bill from AT&T because the family checked email on their three phones while on a cruise
- A customer receiving a $20,000 bill from AT&T for sending pictures and emails while in Canada
- A customer receiving a $28,000 bill from AT&T for watching a Chicago Bears game on his phone while on a cruise
- The list goes on and on