Rumor Mill: T-Mobile reps told to 'sell against' the iPhone starting Sept. 21

An internal T-Mobile USA document advising retail sales representatives about "selling against the iPhone" could point to Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) once again passing on the nation's No. 4 carrier for iPhone support, according to the blog TmoNews.

The document, which notes a date of Sept. 21 for the new "selling against the iPhone" training, talks about a "Grab & Go suite" for sales reps in the carrier's electronic learning system as well as ways for employees to practice their sales skills.

Apple will reportedly unveil the next iPhone Sept. 12 and start selling it Sept. 21. T-Mobile representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Though T-Mobile does not sell the iPhone, there was speculation that the carrier would become an iPhone carrier when Apple introduced its next iPhone iteration. As part of T-Mobile's $4 billion network modernization effort, T-Mobile plans to refarm its 1700 MHz AWS spectrum for LTE services and launch HSPA+ service in its 1900 MHz  PCS band "in a large number of markets by the end of the year." The move will make its network compatible with a broader range of devices, including the iPhone. T-Mobile even turned on HSPA+ services in its 1900 MHz spectrum at the Moscone Center in San Francisco during Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference in June.

TmoNews also cited another internal document discussing the introduction of new Monthly4G microSIM kits supporting unlocked iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S models. That could be a prelude to a new announcement from T-Mobile on the progress of the company's spectrum refarming.

Separately, T-Mobile plans to begin offering unlimited, unthrottled smartphone data services in early September, and the carrier said the offering would be available to unlocked iPhones. T-Mobile estimates it currently has around 1 million unlocked iPhones on its network.

According to a July Bloomberg report, which cited a research note from analyst Craig Moffett of Sanford Bernstein, Apple and T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom are likely to reach an agreement to have T-Mobile sell the iPhone next year. T-Mobile is the only Tier 1 U.S. operator that does not sell the iPhone, and has repeatedly noted that a significant number of its customers are churning to other carriers in order to obtain the gadget. Overall, T-Mobile lost a net 205,000 subscribers in the second quarter.

For more:
- see this TmoNews article
- see this CNET article

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