As always, T-Mobile is listening to customers, and T-Mobile Essentials is designed for those who say they just want the basics: unlimited talk, text and smartphone data in the USA - all at the industry's best price, only $30 per line for a family of four with autopay.
The carrier noted it will throttle customers with Essential service in places and during times with heavy network demand, and users can expect further speed reduction if they use more than 50 GB per month. If you don't have auto payments enabled, you'd need to pay $5 extra per line per month. For $60 per month or $30 per line for four lines each month, Essentials gives customers unlimited talk, text, and data on the company's network.
What's not included in T-Mobile Essentials are features like free Netflix for family plans. In addition to the unlimited talk, text, and data, you get 3G hotspot capabilities and some basic global features (unlimited talk, text, and 2G data in Mexico and Canada, plus unlimited text and flat rate calling at $0.25/minute in over 210 destinations).
The cheaper plan limits video to 480p and hotspot connections are always 3G. And Verizon charges $80 for the first line of service on its cheapest "gounlimited" plan.
"The other guys have got Above Unlimited, Unlimited Plus, Beyond Unlimited, Unlimited and More ..." T-Mobile said that its One Plus plan includes HD streaming, twice the data speed overseas, and other perks, like in-flight texting and unlimited music streaming.
Mobile back to price competition in 'unlimited'
The savings get a little better when you add two lines of Essentials, which costs $90 ($106 with the nationwide average tax). Now customers need to add taxes and fees to an advertised price we thought T-Mobile was past this. That means lots of new people in new parts of the country, many of whom just want the freedom to use their smartphone without worrying about overage penalties.
"The Un-carrier wants to make it easy", CEO John Legere said in a press release.
T-Mobile's move to a tiered pricing structure for its unlimited options follows similar moves by the rest of the nation's wireless operators.
So how much is this all going to cost customers? Taxes and fees are also not included in that rate.
T-Mobile One Plus International, finally, is also an upgrade over ONE.
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