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T-Mobile prepaid options still not as good as Metro

By Jules Wang December 23, 2018, 5:30 pm
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With T-Mobile’s announcement of its new eSIM app for the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR, it had also rejiggered all of its prepaid plans as well. The Un-carrier pulled a few sly moves in doing so, though given how nonsensically odd the original T-Mobile ONE Prepaid plan was, T-Mobile ONE Prepaid Domestic Only may, perhaps, be a step up.

It might be a longer name, but it still offers unlimited talk, text and high-speed data — speeds for streaming media, such as videos, music and games, are throttled to moderate quality while general traffic can be slowed down after more than 50GB of use in a cycle — as well as hotspot tethering at 3G speeds.

Whereas the plan formerly wrapped up international calls from the US plus Mexico and Canada coverage, this plan separates them as add-ons for $15 and $5 per month, respectively. That said, the base rate for one line is just $50, so customers would pay less than the $75 with the old plan even with both add-ons. But there is a catch we’ll have to explain ahead.

The lower-tier Simply Prepaid plan makes a few changes: high-speed data is capped at 10GB, though streaming media — except for music, which does not count against the data cap — and hotspot throttling can be toggled on or off. The same international add-ons are available here. It’s all for $40 per month.

Unlike the postpaid family of T-Mobile ONE plans, the advertised cost of these plans do not include taxes and fees — so $40 per month or $70 per month isn’t actually $40 or $70 per month. Both plans offer up to four additional lines at $30 per month apiece.

For frame of reference, subsidiary Metro by T-Mobile (though still stuck on its old MetroPCS web domain) also offers a $50 unlimited high-speed data plan, but offers 5GB of LTE-speed hotspot data, 100GB of Google One cloud storage and offers international calling for up to 50 countries at $10 per month plus Canada and Mexico roaming coverage for $5 per month each. To top it off, taxes and fees ARE included in the price.

As we’ve said before, if you can’t access postpaid plans for a lack of credit and are looking for a better deal here, we’d recommend going with Metro by T-Mobile over T-Mobile. However, if you’re looking for a way to use that eSIM in your iPhone, it seems that this is what you’ve got to work with.

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