It’s a new day, which means that T-Mobile probably has a new way to disrupt the mobile industry. As part of the Un-carrier Amped announcements, “Mobile without Borders,” offers coverage and calling across the U.S., Mexico, and Canada for all Simple Choice customers at no extra charge starting July 15.
T-Mobile has been known for its cutting edge plans and this one is no exception. It not only covers an entire continent at no extra charge, but works with both land lines and mobile phones, including the 4G LTE data that’s already part of existing Simple Choice plans. Everyone with a Simple Choice plan is eligible, including both postpaid and prepaid customers.
If you have ever traveled to Mexico or Canada, you know about the roaming charges that you can incur. In 2014, 35 percent of all international calls and 55 percent of all international travel from the U.S. were to Mexico and Canada. And 70 percent of international trips taken by small and mid-sized businesses were to Mexico and Canada. The U.S. carriers grabbed nearly $10 million in global roaming charges, and 90 percent of that amount went in their pockets.
Of course a new T-Mobile promotion wouldn’t be complete without a dig at the other carriers, and T-Mobile CEO John Legere was happy to oblige, “After spending billions buying up Mexican telecoms, AT&T’s CEO is promising ‘the first seamless network covering Mexico and the U.S.,’ something ‘unique’ that ‘nobody else will be able to do for the consumer.’ So much for that. They won’t be the first. And they won’t offer Canada for free. We’ve done this the Un-carrier way — reaching across borders, partnering with leading providers offering the best LTE networks, creating a simple solution right now — then not charging a penny more for it.”
Cell phone rates can go up 120x or more just by stepping foot in either Mexico or Canada. According to Legere, AT&T’s Passport plan could result in additional fees of $285 per week if, while in Canada, you were to use your phone as you normally do at home.
Not everyone travels, but T-Mobile customers can still make use of the new deal since calling to Mexico and Canada from the U.S. can also be quite costly. Last year, U.S. customers spent 25 million minutes calling Mexico and Canada, at a potential pay-per-use cost of $7.5 billion. T-Mobile won’t be charging an extra penny for any of these calls.
Mobile without Borders does indeed erase the border in terms of usage charges, because no matter where you are (U.S., Mexico, or Canada), it will be like you’re at home with no extra costs.
T-Mobile’s aggressive promotions continue to help drive growth, and the company also announced today that 2.1 million new customers were added during the second quarter of 2015. That’s a 41 percent year-over-year increase and the ninth straight quarter in which the company gained more than 1 million new customers.