T-Mobile Jump plans are a bad deal thanks to new rules

t mobile changes jump policy tmojump

T-Mobile’s Jump program was a major bragging right of the company as being an Uncarrier, offering you the choice on when to upgrade your phone after only six months, as long as you trade in your old phone. Now, after only seven months, things are changing. On February 23, Jump will, instead of offering an upgrade at the six month mark, let you upgrade anytime you want, as long as you pay off 50 percent of the balance of your phone. But hey, at least it also covers tablets now.

The policy change, after such a short time, suggests that among the many Uncarrier-like things T-Mobile has done since January 2013, Jump may have, well, jumped the gun. We haven’t heard how many of the first users of Jump decided to get new phones, but the numbers must have been high for T-Mobile to make such a dramatic change.

With this new policy, T-Mobile customers are no longer subject to the 6-month minimum wait to upgrade, but they can’t start until the phone is half-way paid off – which makes Jump more like a once-a-year upgrade policy now (And it wasn’t a great deal even as a 6-month policy). T-Mobile customers are also still subject to the $10 monthly fee, the down payment of the new device (if applicable), and the monthly installment fee. Jump customers will also be required to still trade in the old device and be subject to credit approval, just like the original Jump deal. This change does technically mean you can upgrade as often as you want, and it adds tablets to the list of qualified devices, but you still have to pay for half the device before upgrading, or pretty much wait a whole year.

With this all in mind, suddenly Jump doesn’t look very reasonable at all. If you were to buy a iPhone 5S today and pay the $27 installment plan plus $10 Jump fee per month, after a year the phone would cost you a whopping $444 (66 percent of the retail price) to upgrade – and you still have to trade it in. If the iPhone has any damage or other issues, then you’d also have to pay a $175 deductible, bringing the cost of your Jump upgrade just about the same as paying retail.

Since T-Mobile users are not under a contract,  Jump users are under no obligation to continue the service and can cancel anytime. We suggest that they do.

Product Review

Amazon's new Echo is smaller and cheaper; firmware upgrade improves sound

The all-new Echo is shorter, cuter, and comes with several different color and fabric choices. Our Amazon Echo review reveals that while the acoustics initially weren't great upon release, a firmware upgrade has improved the sound.
Mobile

Lyft’s new rewards program promises ride discounts and comfier cars

If you're always hopping in and out of a Lyft car, then you'll be pleased to hear that the ridesharing service is about to launch a rewards program. Perks include discounts on future trips and upgrades to comfier cars.
Deals

The best iPhone deals for November 2018

Apple devices can get expensive, but if you just can't live without iOS, don't despair: We've curated an up-to-date list of all of the absolute best iPhone deals available for November 2018.
Home Theater

Want to mirror your smartphone or tablet onto your TV? Here's how

A vast arsenal of devices exists to allow sending anything on your mobile device to your TV. Our in-depth guide shows you how to mirror content from your smartphone or tablet to the big screen from virtually any device available.
Mobile

The best iPhone XR cases to keep your phone shiny and new

Apple's new iPhone range is the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.
Computing

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement, or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.
Cars

Lime’s first carsharing service motors into Seattle this week

Lime may be better known for its app-based bike and scooter rental services, but in Seattle, Washington this week it's launching its very first carsharing service, similar to Car2go and Zipcar.
Mobile

The 100 best Android apps turn your phone into a jack-of-all-trades

Choosing which apps to download is tricky, especially given how enormous and cluttered the Google Play Store has become. We rounded up 100 of the best Android apps and divided them neatly, with each suited for a different occasion.
Photography

Golf ball-sized Lume Cube Air is a pocketable LED for photos and video

Off-camera lighting for smartphones and GoPros just got even smaller. Meet the Lume Cube Air, a smaller portable LED light designed for photos and videos that weighs only about two ounces.
Deals

Black Friday 2018: The best deals so far

Black Friday is the biggest shopping holiday of the year, and it will be here before you know it. If you can't wait until November 23 to start formulating a shopping plan, we've got you covered.
Mobile

Best Google Pixel 3 XL screen protectors

It's tough to find good screen protectors, but the 6.3-inch OLED screen in the Google Pixel 3 XL definitely demands to be protected from scratches and impact damage. We've picked out the best options and included insight into the downsides.
Mobile

Pocket Casts adds more cross-sync, curation, and Siri Shortcuts

Pocket Casts is a pocket staple for many podcast fanatics. But it's about to get even better with the introduction Pocket Casts 7.0 that adds intelligent curation, Siri Shortcuts support, and a streamlined UI.
Mobile

Taking shots in the dark with Night Sight, the Pixel’s newest photo feature

The Google Pixel range has always been the home of some of the mobile world's best phone cameras. That performance is now getting even better with the introduction of the low-light Night Sight mode.
Product Review

Mediocre battery and a big notch slight Google's otherwise perfect Pixel phone

Google’s Pixel 3 XL has two big flaws: The gigantic notch on the front, and mediocre battery life. That being said, this is the best Android experience you can find in a smartphone today.