Sprint's CEO, Marcello Claure, responded to T-mobile's CEO, John Legere, on Twitter by calling him out on the "misleading" lease plans for high-end smartphones, which T-mobile announced recently.
T-mobile said that you can now upgrade your phone anytime you want, up to three times a year, with the new JUMP! On Demand program. According to Sprint's CEO, what T-mobile didn't say is that each time customers would upgrade their devices, their monthly fees would go up. T-mobile announced that their customers can get the iPhone on a $15 a month lease, but Sprint's CEO claimed that price can rise up to $27.
Claure's whole comment below was made out of four tweets he posted last night:
"@JohnLegere I am so tired of your Uncarrier bull[****] when you are worse than the other two carriers together. Your cheap misleading lease imitation is a joke.You trick people to believe that they have a 15 dollar iphone lease payment when it's not true. You tell them they can upgrade up to 3x but you don't tell them the price goes up to 27 dollars when they do.You say one thing but behave completely different. It's all a fake show. So its really #Tmobilelikehell."
T-mobile's CEO hasn't denied or confirmed the accusations so far.
Sprint has had some PR problems in the past few days as well, so it may use this new "scandal" as a cover for its own. The company announced a new $80 plan that included a smartphone and "unlimited everything" (SMS, Voice, Data) plan, except it wasn't quite true. Any video streaming would be limited to 600 Kbps, something that caused an uproar online, and the company quickly retracted its limitation.
"At Sprint, we strive to provide customers a great experience when using our network. We heard you loud and clear, and we are removing the 600 kbps limitation on streaming video," Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said. "During certain times, like other wireless carriers, we might have to manage the network in order to reduce congestion and provide a better customer experience for the majority of our customers."
As the two smaller U.S. carriers out of the big four, Sprint and T-mobile have been battling it out to become the larger third carrier in the U.S. Sprint tried to achieve that last year by merging with T-mobile into a carrier that would pose a bigger threat to Verizon and AT&T. However, that deal faced major opposition from the public, as well as the government, which feared that the merger would actually lead to weaker, not stronger, competition.
Dish and T-mobile seem to be in talks for a merger now. The two companies united could pose a bigger threat to AT&T and Verizon than T-mobile alone. At the same time, there would still be four major carriers in the U.S., instead of only three.
Sprint also merged with the Japanese carrier Softbank two years ago, but so far T-mobile has been the one to make the bigger waves in the wireless market. If T-mobile will become an even more aggressive player in the wireless market, it could force Verizon, AT&T and Sprint to respond in kind, which could be great news for their customers.