Did you all read the fine print? Yea, I’m talking to all you folks who switched network when T-Mobile came out with their new “un-carrier” plan. Did you read the fine print?
Well I didn’t. When they advertised the end of the “two-year contract,” I was one of many who left my carrier and switched to T-Mobile. My contract with my old carrier (Verizon), was already over and I was actively shopping around. T-Mobile’s new no contract program was all I needed to sign up. And I’m happy.
Verizon is known for its service. And for the most part, I was able to get that service whenever I travelled nationwide. But for that service, you’re going to dish out some cash. And I quite frankly got tired of all those years of dishing. The un-carrier, no contract plans offered by T-Mobile got me.
T-Mobile USA’s “radical” service plans promising no annual contracts aren’t quite as radical as consumers might think, and the mobile operator will change its advertising and offer refunds in a settlement with the state of Washington.
On March 26, the fourth-largest U.S. carrier introduced a series of new service offerings, including no-contract monthly plans and a program that let customers pay for a new phone over the course of 24 months. In unveiling the plans, T-Mobile thumbed its nose at rival mobile operators, calling the new offerings “uncarrier” plans that would free the company and its customers from the constraints of conventional service agreements.
Now the company has agreed to clarify a few things in that pitch after an investigation by the Washington Attorney General’s Office. Specifically, T-Mobile didn’t tell potential customers who bought phones on time that they would have to keep T-Mobile service for 24 months or pay off the rest of the phone’s full price when they canceled the service, said Paula Sellis, an attorney who handled the case in the Attorney General’s Office. The fine-print disclosures that T-Mobile did offer were hard to understand, she said.
“You had to dig very deeply to understand what the terms of the program were, and you had to put two and two together,” Sellis said on a conference call on Thursday.
T-Mobile ads that promised “no restrictions,” “no annual contract”, and no requirement to “serve a two-year sentence” actually only covered plans with no phone included, the Attorney General’s Office said. To get those plans, consumers would have to bring their own phone or pay full price at the time of purchase.
“In our view, those advertisements were quite deceptive,” Attorney General Bob Ferguson said.
In a statement on Thursday, T-Mobile stood by its ads.
“As America’s Un-carrier, our goal is to increase transparency with our customers, unleashing them from restrictive long-term service contracts — this kind of simple, straightforward approach is core to the new company we are building. While we believe our advertising was truthful and appropriate, we voluntarily agreed to this arrangement with the Washington AG in this spirit,” T-Mobile said.
It’s kool. I’m okay with this. My monthly bill is half of what I paid with Verizon and I have a great phone. I am not upset with the fine print. I will save some money each month and I will use it to pay off for my phone before the two years are up.
Yep! This is what I call Freedom. 🙂0