T-Mobile is known to make drastic progressions within its Uncarrier movement. And just when you think Magenta and its leader, John Legere, have run out of ways to shake up the wireless industry, here we are once again for the 12th assault. The Uncarrier 12 announcement kicked off with a bold claim from Legere, “The era of the data plan is over.” Yes, T-Mobile is specifically targeting the ‘pain point’ and inefficiencies of data buckets and shared data that the rest of the industry thrives on.
The Uncarrier’s answer to this is a new unlimited offering dubbed T-Mobile ONE.
Your first thought may be like ours: Didn’t T-Mobile already have an unlimited plan? Rightly so. However, T-Mobile ONE does make going unlimited a more viable option, by lowering the monthly cost from $95 in the Simple Choice unlimited plan to $70 (or $75 without AutoPay). Not only that, but you can add more unlimited lines at lower costs. The 2nd line would be $50 and any additional up to 8 lines would only be $20/line. Or another way to look at it is, a family of four can get T-Mobile ONE for only $40/line. Not too shabby compared to other carrier unlimited plans (if they do offer it at all).
That said, not everything about T-Mobile ONE is rainbows and unicorns. One of the most curious caveats is that HD video is not included with the shiny new unlimited plan. T-Mobile is taking a page from its controversial Binge On strategy and forcing the 480p (DVD quality) video cap even further. And this time, you can’t turn it off. Well, that is, unless you cough up an extra $25 per month per line. Ouch.
And forget full tethering (mobile hotspot) support as well. Unless you pay an extra $15 for 5GB of high-speed data, you’ll only be able to tether with 2G speeds. To put things into perspective, adding HD video and 5GB of mobile hotspot data would increase the cost of an individual T-Mobile ONE line to $110/month.
Therefore, the benefit of T-Mobile ONE really depends on how you use your data. If you don’t care about HD video or tethering, then it can be a good deal, especially if you tack on more data-hogging members. But if those features do matter, then the current $95/month Simple Choice unlimited plan is a better value.
T-Mobile ONE of course includes unlimited talk, unlimited text, 4G LTE data speeds, and all the perks that come with the current Simple Choice plans (Simple Global, Mobile Without Borders, T-Mobile Tuesdays, etc.). Tablets and wearables are also supported, at $20/month per tablet or $5/month per wearable (at 2G speeds). The new unlimited plan will launch on Sept. 6th.
We’d like to hear your thoughts on T-Mobile ONE. Do you feel like this approach to unlimited is a hit, or did the Uncarrier miss the mark this time?