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Apple's iPhone 5 debuts on T-Mobile April 12 with $99 upfront payment plan

post #1 of 95
Thread Starter 
Customers of T-Mobile, the fourth-largest carrier in the U.S., will get long awaited access to Apple's iPhone when the iPhone 5 launches on the carrier's network April 12.

The announcement was made Tuesday by T-Mobile as part of the company's "Uncarrier" branding, which seeks to differentiate the carrier from competing providers like AT&T, Verizon and Sprint ? all of which already carry the iPhone.

T-Mobile


In standing out from the others, T-Mobile is offering a 16-gigabyte iPhone 5 for $99 up front, with 20 additional monthly payments of $20. With an April 12 sale date in T-Mobile's retail stores, preorders will begin April 5.

Joining the iPhone 5 will be the remainder of Apple's current smartphone lineup: the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 4. As with other carriers, only the iPhone 5 will be compatible with T-Mobile's new 4G LTE high-speed data network.

T-Mobile officially announced its new LTE network at Tuesday's event as well, available in a total of seven U.S. markets: Kansas City, Kan., Houston, Tex., Las Vegas, Nev., Phoenix, Ariz., San Jose, Calif., and Washington D.C.

T-Mobile


T-Mobile's new data plans include 500 megabytes of high-speed online data and unlimited calls and texts for $50. For an extra $10 per month, users get 2.5 gigabytes of high-speed data, while unlimited 4G access runs $70 per month. In addition, users are simply throttled, not penalized, when they go over their data cap.

Bringing Apple's iPhone to T-Mobile with full support has been no small task. While the carrier counts some two million iPhone customers among its base ? with about 100,000 added per month ? T-Mobile's reliance on the 1700MHz frequency for its 3G HSPA+ network proved an obstacle for T-Mobile with regard to Apple's bestselling smartphone.

T-Mobile


The 1700MHz frequency, branded as 4G but not LTE, is unique to T-Mobile among carriers, and allows iPhone users only very slow 2G connectivity. Given T-Mobile's relatively small customer base, Apple never moved to support T-Mobile's standard. Instead, T-Mobile has been working to switch much of its network to 1900MHz in order to allow iPhone connectivity. The company will be repurposing its 1700MHz band for 4G LTE.

T-Mobile last year announced a deal with Apple to begin selling Apple products in 2013. Executives from the carrier said in January of this year that customers could expect Apple products on T-Mobile sooner rather than later, floating the possibility of "three to four months" rather than "six to nine."
post #2 of 95
Yikes... a $500 subsidized phone.

Although their rates are likely less than others, so the $20 might be a wash.

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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
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post #3 of 95
It's $650 retail so $500 is a discount. At least when the phone is paid off you get the lower rare.
post #4 of 95
*rate
post #5 of 95
This means the iPhone 5 on T-Mobile is only $499! WOW! That's a $150 discount!!!
post #6 of 95
Finally a affordable Choice for an iPhone Rateplan with unlimited data
post #7 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by alphafox View Post

It's $650 retail so $500 is a discount. At least when the phone is paid off you get the lower rare.

Yup. You keep your phone longer you save $20/month.
post #8 of 95
Just a thought.....could this also indicate a possible April/June release of the 5s? Wishful thinking!
post #9 of 95
Originally Posted by Ampsurge View Post
Just a thought.....could this also indicate a possible April/June release of the 5s? Wishful thinking!

 

Why would it?

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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post #10 of 95

Wow! if someone did the same here in Portugal, this means:

 

Paying 100 euros for the iPhone, +20 each month 20 months. And since I am a student: unlimited voice and sms for vodafone (almost everyone), plus 350mb data each month, 7.5 euros.

 

So I could have an iPhone and pay 27.5 euros each month. I pay 10 and own a crappy Android device.

This is amazing, I wish vodafone does something similar!

 

You Americans have no idea about how much you guys are raped.

post #11 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ampsurge View Post

Just a thought.....could this also indicate a possible April/June release of the 5s? Wishful thinking!

 

No...why would you think that? What does the iPhone 5s have to do this with announcement?

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post #12 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by oberpongo View Post

Finally a affordable Choice for an iPhone Rateplan with unlimited data

 

Straight Talk uses ATT towers and iPhone 5 can be purchased then just monthly unlimited, cancel anytime.  In my area ATT provides great service.

post #13 of 95
Apple is also bringing out an update to have the iPhone 5 support HSDPA on AWS. That means that the iPhone 5 will work on the current 4G network as well
post #14 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by icoco3 View Post

 

Straight Talk uses ATT towers and iPhone 5 can be purchased then just monthly unlimited, cancel anytime.  In my area ATT provides great service.

I was on Straight Talk but I personally had numerous issues. Again, milage may vary but I'm on Tmobile month 4g now and couldn't be happier. Other nice thing is that T-Mobile will soon have "official" iphone support, mean visual voicemail and facetime over data unlike straight talk.

post #15 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewyboy View Post

I was on Straight Talk but I personally had numerous issues. Again, milage may vary but I'm on Tmobile month 4g now and couldn't be happier. Other nice thing is that T-Mobile will soon have "official" iphone support, mean visual voicemail and facetime over data unlike straight talk.

 

True...everyone needs to compare and get the best solution for their needs.  What works in my area might not work for others.

post #16 of 95
This is exactly the type of transaction stream that could be handled by the iTunes Platform Store:
  1. $100 (or similar) initial Purchase
  2. twenty monthly payments of $20 (or similar)
  3. monthly fixed cellphone services fees at various tiers
  4. modify any of the above at any point in time (new iPhone, new services plan)
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post #17 of 95
Total rip off. So I am supposed to pay for the phone separately and they are still going to charge me almost exactly as much as AT&T does for unlimited data? Now I do know that AT&T 'unlimited' data isn't really unlimited any more, but I expect that T-Mobile's definition of 'unlimited' is a lot closer to AT&T's definition of 'unlimited' than everyone else's definition of unlimited. For this to be a good deal the unlimited plan needs to be about $50 per month and the 500GB plan about $30 a month.
post #18 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by oberpongo View Post

Apple is also bringing out an update to have the iPhone 5 support HSDPA on AWS. That means that the iPhone 5 will work on the current 4G network as well

 

Please provide a link to backup your claim.  

post #19 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by pedromartins View Post

Wow! if someone did the same here in Portugal, this means:

Paying 100 euros for the iPhone, +20 each month 20 months. And since I am a student: unlimited voice and sms for vodafone (almost everyone), plus 350mb data each month, 7.5 euros.

So I could have an iPhone and pay 27.5 euros each month. I pay 10 and own a crappy Android device.
This is amazing, I wish vodafone does something similar!

You Americans have no idea about how much you guys are raped.

Where in Portugal can you travel about 5000 kilometer in one general direction and still be on the same plan? Lets remember that America is not only huge buy populated throughout most of it. I read that the farthest distance between any two McDonald's in America is 107 miles, which is really just pointing to the deadest areas in one of the Dakotas. Among the many reasons why Portugal and the US are not the same and how it affects the cellular carriers geographic borders are a big one. There are still carriers that are regional or offer regional plans but the major ones dropped them a long time ago because 1) they weren't really competitive since they had invested in networks across the US so they may as well offer it as a value added service, and 2) most Americans travel across areas much bigger than Portugal frequently so a regional or state plan simply would be too constricting for many users.

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post #20 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

 

Please provide a link to backup your claim.  

 

Link??  We don't need no stinkin' link to backup claims !!!!  /s

post #21 of 95

There are still some questions.  Are all iPhone 5 models (16, 32, 64) going to be subject to the 20 bucks a month?  What happens if you want to cancel your service after 3 months......would there be an ETF (which means there is a contract of sorts)?  Would T-Mobile just eat the cost of the iPhone you just bought?  

post #22 of 95

Nobody's excited about HD Voice? :D

post #23 of 95
The iPhone 5s might be relevant because you are getting the phone at a present value that is lower than current market value, which might indicate that a new iPhone is coming sooner rather than later. That's why he asked.

I'm not so sure of that, because if you look at the math on the unlimited plan the price versus value isn't so clear anymore. I'll comment more on that later.
post #24 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

There are still some questions.  Are all iPhone 5 models (16, 32, 64) going to be subject to the 20 bucks a month?  What happens if you want to cancel your service after 3 months......would there be an ETF (which means there is a contract of sorts)?  Would T-Mobile just eat the cost of the iPhone you just bought?  

Nope, you'd just be billed for remainder of the 0% "loan" for the phone. No ETF. This was stated last fall with the announcement.

 

Edit: As to the first part, they said today that for the most expensive phones would be $20 a month, if you head to their site now you can see that most phones are like $12-$18 a month... depending on cost of phone. So it could look like for the 3 models $14,$17,$20.

post #25 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Collins View Post

Total rip off. So I am supposed to pay for the phone separately and they are still going to charge me almost exactly as much as AT&T does for unlimited data? Now I do know that AT&T 'unlimited' data isn't really unlimited any more, but I expect that T-Mobile's definition of 'unlimited' is a lot closer to AT&T's definition of 'unlimited' than everyone else's definition of unlimited. For this to be a good deal the unlimited plan needs to be about $50 per month and the 500GB plan about $30 a month.

 

Come here often??  Oh, this was your first post and you went stright into the ______ !!!!

 

Sit back and relax awhile then try again.

post #26 of 95
LTE in only 7 cities! Feels like 2010 all over again.

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post #27 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewyboy View Post

Nope, you'd just be billed for remainder of the 0% "loan" for the phone. No ETF. This was stated last fall with the announcement.

 

Edit: As to the first part, they said today that for the most expensive phones would be $20 a month, if you head to their site now you can see that most phones are like $12-$18 a month... depending on cost of phone. So it could look like for the 3 models $14,$17,$20.

So you're being billed for the remainder of the balance of the phone.  So there is a fee to leave their service.    

post #28 of 95
Originally Posted by drewyboy View Post
TROLL TROLL TROLL. 

 

Well, no. I certainly wouldn't say so just yet.


Absolute BS you're spewing!

 

But there's a great deal of FUD there, borne of not understanding how this whole thing works; you're right.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
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post #29 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Collins View Post

Total rip off. So I am supposed to pay for the phone separately and they are still going to charge me almost exactly as much as AT&T does for unlimited data? Now I do know that AT&T 'unlimited' data isn't really unlimited any more, but I expect that T-Mobile's definition of 'unlimited' is a lot closer to AT&T's definition of 'unlimited' than everyone else's definition of unlimited. For this to be a good deal the unlimited plan needs to be about $50 per month and the 500GB plan about $30 a month.

 

T-Mobile is massively cheaper. They do not offer any phone subsidies. It's all no-contract pay as you go plans. You pay for the phone separate from the plan. This way just makes the $499 price of the iPhone seem more reasonable. Just went online and set up a T-Mobile individual plan and an ATT individual plan.

 

T-Mobile: Unlimited minutes, texting, data for $70 a month + $20 for the phone = $90 a month for the first 20 months. 2 Year cost with iPhone 5 16GB = $2179 

 

ATT: Unlimited minutes and texting, 5GB of data for $139.99 per month. 2 Year total cost with iPhone 5 16GB = $3558.76

 

You can't compare your old unavailable plan with current offerings. T-Mobile wins for price by a lot.

post #30 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Collins View Post

Total rip off. So I am supposed to pay for the phone separately and they are still going to charge me almost exactly as much as AT&T does for unlimited data? Now I do know that AT&T 'unlimited' data isn't really unlimited any more, but I expect that T-Mobile's definition of 'unlimited' is a lot closer to AT&T's definition of 'unlimited' than everyone else's definition of unlimited. For this to be a good deal the unlimited plan needs to be about $50 per month and the 500GB plan about $30 a month.

You might be nuts. For $60 a month you get unlimited everything on T-Mobile including the ability to use the phone as a hotspot. The data slows from 4G to 2G after 2GBs.

On T-Mobile you are getting a $650 iPhone for $500 payable at $99 down and $20 a month until paid off. So the total bill runs $80 a month at least until the phone is paid off.

A comparable plan on AT&T costs $130 a month, lacks unlimited data, lacks the hotspot, requires a $199 down payment on the same phone, and the price never adjusts when phone is paid off.

This is a very good deal. I am cheap and have compared everything. Although I have used AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon I have been with T-Mobile two years. In Michigan coverage is great except up north where T-Mobile rides on AT&T.
post #31 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Collins View Post

Total rip off. So I am supposed to pay for the phone separately and they are still going to charge me almost exactly as much as AT&T does for unlimited data? Now I do know that AT&T 'unlimited' data isn't really unlimited any more, but I expect that T-Mobile's definition of 'unlimited' is a lot closer to AT&T's definition of 'unlimited' than everyone else's definition of unlimited. For this to be a good deal the unlimited plan needs to be about $50 per month and the 500GB plan about $30 a month.

AT&T doesn't offer unlimited data anymore.
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post #32 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

So you're being billed for the remainder of the balance of the phone.  So there is a fee to leave their service.    

Well yeah, you bought a phone. You have to remember, most things you know about how cell contracts work are being thrown out. YOU bought the phone full price. TMo lent you the money at 0% and all they're asking for is to pay it off over 24 months (more than likely $10-20) extra depending on price. When you want to leave they say, "Hey Ghost, thanks for being with us and sad to see you go, but remember the money we spotted you to buy the full priced phone?? Since we won't see you again, we'd like that money back now." That's not a fee, that's simply paying your friend back who spotted you the money.

post #33 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

LTE in only 7 cities! Feels like 2010 all over again.

They have HSPA+ in a lot more areas.
post #34 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewyboy View Post

Well yeah, you bought a phone. You have to remember, most things you know about how cell contracts work are being thrown out. YOU bought the phone full price. TMo lent you the money at 0% and all they're asking for is to pay it off over 24 months (more than likely $10-20) extra depending on price. When you want to leave they say, "Hey Ghost, thanks for being with us and sad to see you go, but remember the money we spotted you to buy the full priced phone?? Since we won't see you again, we'd like that money back now." That's not a fee, that's simply paying your friend back who spotted you the money.

Exactly. I think the interesting thing is that T-Mobile is giving you the phone at close to wholesale price. In other words, T-Mobile is seemingly passing it's purchasing rates on to you.
post #35 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

So you're being billed for the remainder of the balance of the phone.  So there is a fee to leave their service.    

No. You must simply finish paying for the smartphone you purchased.
post #36 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by starbird73 View Post

Yup. You keep your phone longer you save $20/month.

But after 20 months one is going to want to upgrade their iPhone so onto another payment plan they'll go.
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post #37 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBell View Post


They have HSPA+ in a lot more areas.

 

Yup. And I've found it has always exceeded my Verizon LTE speeds in NYC. It's great. I can't wait to jump ship on Verizon. I would guess that because few people use T-Mobile and so many use Verizon that the congestion of NYC towers favor T-Mobile.

post #38 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

Nobody's excited about HD Voice? 1biggrin.gif

LTE
HSPA+ failback
Visual Voicemail
VoLTE


I am. Bye, AT&T (as soon as my contract is finished).
post #39 of 95
Quote:
SolipsismX View Post

LTE in only 7 cities! Feels like 2010 all over again.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TBell View Post


They have HSPA+ in a lot more areas.

 

Solip, they said they're are only claiming LTE coverage in a city if the WHOLE city is covered so there isn't any false advertisement unlike other carriers. So when they say it, they mean it. And as TBell has pointed out, the HSPA+ is all over the place with pretty stink'n fast speed.

post #40 of 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


But after 20 months one is going to want to upgrade their iPhone so onto another payment plan they'll go.

 

And it's still cheaper than ATT but you don't have to be on a locked in contract and pay an activation fee for your new phone.

Buy your phone on Amazon and you can have a new one every year and actually be saving money.

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