T-Mobile adds new tethering, domestic data roaming services to Simple Choice plans

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T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) is offering new domestic data roaming and mobile hotspot services to customers who sign up for its prepaid Simple Choice plans without a credit check, the company confirmed to FierceWireless.

The carrier said it is making the changes to increase the value of its plans. "We are excited to confirm T-Mobile is enhancing our Simple Choice Plan for pay-in-advance customers to provide even more value and a similar level of plan features as our customers that run credit," the carrier said in a statement.

The services, which became available Oct. 20, give pay-in-advance customers (i.e. prepaid customers who do not submit to a credit check) access to domestic data roaming across the United States. Additionally, prepaid customers who sign up for the company's $70 Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plan will also have access to 2.5 GB of mobile hotspot data. The changes were first spotted by the blog Android Central.

T-Mobile's new prepaid plans now break down as follows:

  • $50 per month per line: Offers unlimited voice, texting and 500 MB of high-speed data before throttling, as well as the new offer of 10 MB of domestic data roaming and 500 MB of mobile hotspot service. Previously, the plan offered no domestic data roaming, but it did previously offer 500 MB of mobile hotspot service.
  • $60 per month per line: Offers unlimited voice, texting and 2.5 GB of high-speed data before throttling, as well as the new offer of 50 MB of domestic data roaming and 2.5 GB of mobile hotspot service. Previously, the plan offered no domestic data roaming, but it did previously offer 2.5 GB of mobile hotspot service.
  • $70 per month per line: Offers unlimited voice, texting and data, as well as the new offer of 50 MB of domestic data roaming and 2.5 GB of mobile hotspot service. Previously, the plan offered no domestic data roaming and also previously did not offer mobile hotspot service.

The change is one of several recent pricing tweaks from T-Mobile. The carrier introduced its "Uncarrier" strategy last year that centered on removing two-year contract requirements and allowing customers to pay for their phones in installments. More recently, T-Mobile has announced plans to eliminate international data roaming fees in more than 100 countries. The carrier also announced it will offer up to 200 MB of data for free each month to tablet customers who connect its network.

However, T-Mobile has also indicated it will move customers off of grandfathered legacy rate plans to new rate plans starting next month--that move stands in contrast to the carrier's "Uncarrier" marketing of being different than its larger competitors. T-Mobile has positioned the change as one that will allow it to simplify its offerings: "Maintaining thousands of rate plans is the norm in the industry, but we think it creates unnecessary complexity," the carrier said in a statement earlier this month. "Simple is better, which is why we're reducing the number of older plans in our systems. We're giving customers on these plans the opportunity to choose a plan that best meets their needs. For the vast majority, their plan will provide similar or better features at a comparable price."

For more:
- see this Android Central post

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