T-Mobile USA said it will continue to support its GoSmart Mobile prepaid brand after it closes its merger with MetroPCS (NYSE:PCS). The news is notable considering T-Mobile plans to take MetroPCS' prepaid brand nationwide after it closes its merger with the flat-rate, no-contract carrier.
"GoSmart Mobile is still going strong," said spokeswoman Kari Ramsey, pointing to a recent video created to promote GoSmart. "We see it as a complementary offering to both T-Mobile and MetroPCS offerings."
T-Mobile took GoSmart nationwide in February. T-Mobile's GoSmart is available at three price points: $30 per month for unlimited voice and texting, $35 for unlimited voice, texting and 2G Web service, and $45 for unlimited voice, texting and "high-speed" Web service. The $45 plan includes 5 GB of data per month, after which users' connections are slowed from "3G" speeds (presumably HSPA) to 2G speeds.
The service launched with two phones--The ZTE V768 and the Alcatel OT 838--and a mobile SIM kit. GoSmart so far has not added any additional devices.
GoSmart is owned and operated by T-Mobile but is sold as a separate and unrelated brand. It is similar to Sprint Nextel's (NYSE:S) prepaid strategy, which stretches across the Virgin Mobile, Boost Mobile and Assurance Wireless brands. The strategy allows T-Mobile to tap into the low-cost prepaid space without using its primary brand.
In October, T-Mobile announced plans to acquire MetroPCS. In December, T-Mobile confirmed that it had begun testing GoSmart Mobile in "select markets." Earlier this week, MetroPCS investors approved the combination of T-Mobile and MetroPCS. Under the terms of the transaction, MetroPCS will engage in a reverse-merger with T-Mobile and Deutsche Telekom will own 74 percent the combined company, which will be public. MetroPCS will also declare a 1-for-2 reverse stock split and pay $1.5 billion in cash to its shareholders. MetroPCS shareholders will retain 26 percent of the company.
T-Mobile and MetroPCS have said the merger will allow the combined company to offer a broader and faster LTE network.
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