T-Mobile launched (opens in new tab) a new marketing scheme on Thursday to reel in new customers by dangling free data in front of their faces. The catch is that these potential customers need a friend already signed up for T-Mobile's Simple Choice plan.
Here's the deal: a Simple Choice customer will get either a full year of unlimited data, or they will get a $10 credit each month for a whole year if they already have unlimited data. However, to get the free data or cash, they must convince a friend to sign up for a T-Mobile Simple Choice plan. Once signed on, that friend will also get free unlimited data for a whole year.
So how can T-Mobile afford to give both customers free unlimited data for a whole year?
"How can we afford not to save these customers?" a T-Mobile representative told Tom's Hardware. "Framily, the nation's slowest LTE network, and now Sprint's 'best deals' don't even apply to them? It's hard to watch. And the other guys aren't much better."
T-Mobile further stated that it can offer more network spectrum per customer than anyone else in the industry and has "the only network built Data Strong. So our network can handle it."
The new plan seems to be in retaliation to Sprint's Family Share Pack, which was announced earlier this week. Starting August 22, Sprint data will cost a flat fee of $100 for 20 GB in addition to the 2 GB of data already provided for each line. For example, an account with 10 lines would see 40 GB for $100, the 20 GB base plus 2 GB for each line. This promotion is for a limited time only.
According to Sprint, T-Mobile charges $100 for four lines that includes 10 GB of data (2.5 GB per line). AT&T charges $160 for four phones with a 10 GB limit, and Verizon Wireless charges $160 for four lines with 10 GB to share and 1 GB per line with a smartphone.
However, T-Mobile points out that its Simple Choice plan includes unlimited talk, text and data. There are no annual service contracts and no overage fees. On Sprint, the data is capped and customers must shell out $15 per gigabyte when they go over their monthly limit. (Ouch.)
"It continues to amaze me to see the old carriers failing to listen to their customers−or reward them for their loyalty," said John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile. "That arrogance and indifference has defined the U.S. wireless industry for too long. We're changing all that. In fact, this entire Un-carrier consumer movement is built on the simple act of listening to customers."
T-Mobile's new scheme starts next Friday, August 29. Customers wanting to get their friends onto the T-Mobile network can head here (opens in new tab).