Recently Browsing 0 members
No registered users viewing this page.
By Jay Bonggolto
T-Mobile settles FCC's $200 million fine for Sprint's Lifeline program misuse
by Jay Bonggolto
T-Mobile has agreed to pay $200 million to the U.S. Treasury in settlement of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) investigation into Sprint's violation against a phone subsidy program. The FCC announced the settlement today and noted that it's the "largest fixed-amount penalty to be paid" in its history.
The issue involved Sprint's use of the Lifeline subsidy program for low-income consumers prior to its acquisition by T-Mobile. Lifeline provides a $9.25 subsidy per month for phone or internet service. To protect the program from abuse, the commission requires service providers to remove customers who don't use the service 15 days after giving them notice.
However, an Enforcement Bureau investigation found that Sprint collected subsidy payments from approximately 885,000 Lifeline subscribers even if the service wasn’t used. Under the FCC's rules, providers may claim reimbursement for a Lifeline subscriber only if the service has been used at least once in the past 30 days. Regarding these findings, Chairman Ajit Pai said:
On top of the settlement, Sprint will also follow a compliance plan meant to ensure obedience to the FCC's Lifeline program rules in the future.
T-Mobile extends its banking service benefits to Sprint customers
by João Carrasqueira
After completing its acquisition of Sprint earlier in the year, T-Mobile has kicked the transition to a single brand into high gear, replacing the Sprint branding in retail stores, and making more of its services available to legacy Sprint customers. Today, the Un-carrier announced that T-Mobile Money, the banking service it launched last year in partnership with BankMobile, is now bringing the benefits T-Mobile customers get to Sprint customers as well.
T-Mobile Money itself is available to anyone, regardless of whether they're a customer of T-Mobile or not, but there are a few benefits if you are. Regular customers get a 1% Annual Percentage Yield (APY) on their deposits, but T-Mobile postpaid customers - and now Sprint's, too - can get up to a 4% APY on deposits up to $3,000, and 1% on anything above that threshold - assuming they deposit $200 each month. These customers can also sign up for the Got Your Back overdraft protection, which lets them go up to $50 over their limit without having transactions rejected or paying overdraft fees.
Aside from those specific benefits, T-Mobile Money accounts include no fees, including a network of 55,000 ATMs without fees, plus no fees charged by T-Mobile for out-of-network ATM usage. It also lets customers make deposits from over 65,000 locations across the United States, and it's otherwise a mobile-first service, since accounts can be created using a smartphone. Additionally, T-Mobile says that if you set up a direct deposit in a T-Mobile Money account, you could get paid up to two days sooner than on traditional banks.
As T-Mobile continues its work to make Sprint customers a part of its network, more of these benefits should be available to them over time. If you're interested, you can get started with T-Mobile Money here.
By Rich Woods
T-Mobile and Sprint users are getting free subscriptions to MLB.TV and The Athletic
by Rich Woods
Today, T-Mobile announced that once again, its customers can get their hands on a free season of MLB.TV. It's the fifth year in a row that the carrier has offered the service as part of its T-Mobile Tuesday deals, offering access to in-market audio, better pitch-by-pitch tracking, and more.
Moreover, this year, customers can get a one-year subscription to The Athletic. According to the announcement, The Athletic offers access to content created by over 400 sports journalists and editors, and it has a network of almost 150 podcasts.
If you're a Sprint customer, this will be the first time that you get to be in on the fun, as T-Mobile announced last month that Sprint customers can get on-board with T-Mobile Tuesdays. This is, of course, because T-Mobile acquired Sprint back in April, and it's killing off the Sprint brand next month.
This offer will be available on Tuesday, July 21. The MLB.TV offer is only valid if you haven't signed up for this season yet, such as if you signed up when T-Mobile offered this earlier this year. That was, of course, back when we thought the baseball season would start at its normal time. For the subscription to The Athletic, the announcement notes that it will auto-renew after a year, at the price of $59.99, unless you cancel.
By Rich Woods
T-Mobile is shutting down Sprint's 5G network
by Rich Woods
On April 1 this year, T-Mobile finalized its acquisition of rival carrier Sprint. The Un-carrier called it a merger, but that's not quite the case, as the firm is shutting down Sprint's 5G network, for Sprint's phones at least.
Getting the axe is Sprint's 2.5GHz spectrum, and T-Mobile is shutting it down so it can light it up for T-Mobile customers. In fact, T-Mobile started lighting up 2.5GHz for its own customers the same day that the acquisition was completed, in Philadelphia. Since then, it's expanded to even more cities.
"We are working to quickly re-deploy, optimize and test the 2.5 GHz spectrum before lighting it up on the T-Mobile network. In the meantime, legacy Sprint customers with compatible devices can enjoy T-Mobile’s nationwide 5G network," a T-Mobile spokesperson said in a statement to Fierce Wireless.
And when T-Mobile says "compatible devices", there's only one. It's the Samsung Galaxy S20 5G that gets to enjoy the carrier's 600MHz spectrum. If you bought a Galaxy S10 5G, LG V50 ThinQ 5G, or OnePlus 7 Pro 5G, you'll be using those as 4G LTE devices from now on. According to the report citing BayStreet Research, that should affect about 75,000 users.
The good news is that T-Mobile has some upgrade deals in place for Sprint customers. If you lease or finance a OnePlus 7 Pro 5G, a Galaxy S10 5G, or V50 ThinQ 5G and you're paying more than $10 a month, you can get a Galaxy S20 5G for $10 a month with a $31.67 a month credit on an 18-month lease. If you're paying less than $10 a month, you can get the S20 5G for $0 a month for a $41.67 a month credit on an 18-month lease.
Sprint customers can access T-Mobile Tuesdays offers starting next week
by João Carrasqueira
T-Mobile is continuing to bring Sprint into the fold following the approval of its merger earlier this year. Today, the carrier announced that Sprint customers will be able to access T-Mobile Tuesdays offers starting next week, on June 23.
For those unfamiliar, T-Mobile Tuesdays is touted as a "thank you" to its customers, rewarding them with weekly offers on food and the occasional giveaway. The program has included partnerships with Burger King, Baskin-Robbins, and more. Now, those offers will also be available to Sprint customers in the T-Mobile Tuesdays app, which is available on Android and iOS.
Additionally, there will be some prizes available through T-Mobile Tuesdays during this summer. Next Tuesday, June 23, 20 customers will get a Samsung Galaxy A71 5G through a sweepstake, with similar offers coming throughout the summer. T-Mobile is even touting a Tesla Model 3 as one of the possible prizes. Other offers will include three months of Postmates Unlimited, a six-month MyTelemedicine membership that includes access to remote doctor appointments and discounts on certain services, bigger discounts on fuel from Shell, and T-Mobile swag.
Since the merger of the two carriers was approved, T-Mobile has already made a few strides towards completing the merger. It began deploying the 2.5GHz 5G network in Philadelphia on the same day as the merger was announced, based on Sprint's 5G spectrum, and it has already been announced that Sprint's Samsung Galaxy S20 phones will be able to connect to T-Mobile's low-band 5G. Some consequences of the merger aren't as positive, with some workers being laid off recently, but the companies did promise to create more jobs over the next five years, and that was one of the conditions for the merger to be approved.