& cplSiteName &

T-Mobile Zeros In on Tablets

Dan Jones
10/24/2013
50%
50%

For its next trick, T-Mobile is offering 200MB of LTE data a month at no extra charge for new tablets connected to its network.

T-Mobile US Inc. CEO John Legere held a Twitter "press conference" Wednesday to reveal its latest "uncarrier" move, offering tablets to new and existing customers for no upfront payment from November 1 onwards (for an unspecified period) and a monthly payment that ranges from $16 to $26, depending on the device.

Initial tablets available will include the Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) Nexus 7 and the latest Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPad Mini and Air. (See Google's Nexus 7 to Traverse US LTE Networks and Apple's iPad Air Adds More LTE, But at a Price.)

What does 200MB of 4G LTE data get you? T-Mobile says that means about 800 Instagram photos, more than 2,500 emails, or 200 minutes of streaming music.

Users will be able to get $5 daily passes to top up wireless data with an extra 500MB. Weekly passes start at $10 for 1GB of data.

For T-Mobile voice customers, tablet plans start at $10 a month for unlimited data, including 500MB of 4G LTE data each month. After the LTE cap is hit, users go on the 3G HSPA+ network.

Legere was questioned on the conference if the new iPads will work across all of T-Mobile's networks. "If there's something that says that the new iPads don't work with our network we'll get it corrected -- these devices were built with our networks in mind," he said.

Legere also insisted that the free data provision will be "good for the life of the device."

The data doesn't appear to be entirely free for the Nexus 7. The Google tablet with WiFi and LTE onboard retails for $349, while the payments of $16 per month for 2 years add up to $384 overall.

The 16GB iPad Mini with Retina display, however, retails at $529. So the overall payment of $528 to T-Mobile at $22 a month over 24 months doesn't appear to take any premium.

Finally, T-Mobile is offering a trade-in program for new and existing customer's current tablets. the operator will take in WiFi-only tablets as well as cellular models.

Why this matters
T-Mobile CEO Legere loves to take a poke at rival AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) when he can. T-Mobile launched an ad with the tablet campaign contrasting its "free data" with the "un-free data" offered with AT&T tablets. Tablets were one of the sources of subscriber additions for AT&T in the previous quarter. (See AT&T's Device Mix Shifts Away From Postpaid.)

Indeed, Wednesday evening, AT&T emailed Light Reading with its latest offer in tablet-dom. "Anyone wanting a 2-year commitment on a tablet data plan can take $100 off the purchase of a tablet from us," a spokesman for the company wrote. Users can add a tablet to an AT&T Mobile Share plan from $10 a month.

Related posts:

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

(23)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 3   >   >>
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/24/2013 | 4:09:54 PM
Re: AT&T tablet plans
I think Verizon's marketing message has been pretty consistent and will remain so. They've gone from saying they have the nation's largest and most reliable 3G network to the largest and most reliable 4G network.

 
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/24/2013 | 3:44:42 PM
Re: AT&T tablet plans
It is a required dynamic...the big boys need to be competitive with each other to retain customers and to grow. It will be interesting now to see if Verizon jumps in as well. I have searched to see if they have a day pass and it doesn't seem like it.  This could be a lot of fun in the future.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/24/2013 | 3:18:25 PM
AT&T tablet plans
They started the day passes a week ago and they tweaked the plans again and offered a $100 off again last night. Tablets are becoming much more important to AT&T and they can't afford to lose "value-conscious" customers to T-Mobile. In a way that's the real dynamic that is at  play here. 
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/24/2013 | 3:11:37 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
Dan...I actually didn't know that AT&T even offered this on the fly!  Very cool!  Now I know for the future.  I have avoided buying a 4G enabled tablet because I don't want to pay for services every month.  But now I know I can do it on the fly.  Nice.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/24/2013 | 3:00:41 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
Oh, I'm sure that's coming. Remember AT&T actually beat them out of the gate with the $5 passes as well

 

Here's how that works:

 

(NEW) SESSION-BASED PLANS ($5 and up)


·         For $5, AT&T customers have access to 250MB for one day (no auto renew)

·         For $25, AT&T customers have access to 1GB for three months (no auto renew).

 

SESSION BASED ($14.99 and up)

These two session-based plans are in addition to the ability to add a tablet to an AT&T Mobile Share plan for just $10:

·         250 MB for 30 days for $14.99

·         3 GB for 30 days for $30

·         5 GB for 30 days for $50
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/24/2013 | 2:55:09 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
I think that their pricing is reasonable.  I am really hoping that AT&T, Verizon and others feel the heat and follow suit!  It would be nice for TMo to offer even bigger bundle passes just in case somebody REALLY has a large video story to file at the last minute!
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/24/2013 | 2:50:28 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
Well the way this works is 200MB "free" data, then you can re-up with $5 500MB and $10 1GB passes, I could see that being lower but that seems about as low as tablet data pricing goes right now, unless you know different. Seems like T-Mobile might have been watching some of that FreedomPop pricing tatics.
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/24/2013 | 2:45:08 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
I agree Dan but I want to be able to buy it on the fly at reasonable pricing not at some gouge because I didn't pay for it every month for years...oh wait that is what they typically do to us anyway.  But seriously, if the carriers adopt methodologies to let you buy on the fly, folks will do it. It works for travelers worldwide all the time ( prices may be high in airports but at least usually close to reasonable).
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/24/2013 | 2:30:10 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
I actually think daily or weekly passes are a pretty sensible additions. I guess it might be what I do but being able to buy connectivity when you need it seems useful to me.
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/24/2013 | 2:16:28 PM
Re: Oh yeah, Legere said this too:
Sarah...thanks for the clarification because I was thinking rarely and reading really!  But really, good deals, growing revenues and growing/retaining customers are not mutually exclusive as Dan said. The key is actually listening to your customers.  In the case of TMo they are sort of doing it but not really.  Customers usually choose the least obnoxious plan which is not necessarily what they want but the least evil to them.  I know that is how it works for me. I don't have a single plan that I like except for my internet plan which is NOT with any major carrier.  I always choose the plan that gives me closest to what I want without killing me!
Page 1 / 3   >   >>
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading founder Steve Saunders grills Cisco's Roland Acra on how he's bringing automation to life inside the data center.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
February 26-28, 2018, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA
March 20-22, 2018, Denver Marriott Tech Center
April 4, 2018, The Westin Dallas Downtown, Dallas
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
SmartNICs aren't just about achieving scale. They also have a major impact in reducing CAPEX and OPEX requirements.
Hot Topics
Project AirGig Goes Down to Georgia
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/13/2017
Here's Pai in Your Eye
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 12/11/2017
Verizon's New Fios TV Is No More
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 12/12/2017
Ericsson & Samsung to Supply Verizon With Fixed 5G Gear
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/11/2017
Juniper Turns Contrail Into a Platform for Multicloud
Craig Matsumoto, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading, 12/12/2017
Animals with Phones
Don't Fall Asleep on the Job! Click Here
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed