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T-Mobile ends contracts, launches LTE and will sell iPhone 5 in April

March 26, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez
  • T-Mobile said it will start selling the iPhone on April 12.
T-Mobile said it will start selling the iPhone on April 12. (T-Mobile )

In an event kicked off by a goofy commercial about a cowboy who's tired of bossing people around, T-Mobile announced it is ending service contracts, launching its LTE network and will start selling the iPhone 5 next month.

T-Mobile said it will no longer offer annual contracts to consumers, and instead charge users month to month.

"They're dead. Gone. No more," said Chief Executive John Legere at the event Tuesday morning in New York City.

T-Mobile introduced the new Simple Choice Plan, which includes unlimited talk, text and data with up to 500 megabytes of high-speed data. The company will charge $50 a month for one line, $30 for a second line and $10 for additional lines after that.

Users can pay $10 more a month for an additional 2 gigabytes of high-speed data. That can then be increased by 12 GB, in increments of 2 GB for $10 per line. Users can also choose to pay $20 a month for unlimited high-speed data.

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After explaining the plan, Legere reiterated that because customers won't be tied to a service contract, "if we suck this month, drop us," the animated CEO said.

However, if users leave the plan, they'll still have to continue paying for their new phones if they were purchased on an installment plan or trade them back in for a credit based on "fair-market value."

The company also announced that consumers will finally be able to purchase the iPhone 5 from T-Mobile starting next month. Consumers will be able to pre-order the device April 5, and receive it or buy it in stores starting April 12. The Apple smartphone will be available for a $99.99 down payment with 24 monthly payments of $20 after that.

T-Mobile said it will also offer the iPhone 4S, for $69.99 with 24 monthly payments of $20, and the iPhone 4 for $14.99 with 24 monthly payments of $15.

At the event, the company also announced the launch of its new LTE network in seven markets. They are Baltimore, Houston, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Phoenix, San Jose, Calif., and Washington, D.C.

The new high-speed network will support the Samsung Galaxy S 4, the Samsung Galaxy Note II, the iPhone 5 as well as the HTC One and BlackBerry Z10.

The company said Blackberry's new touchscreen Z10 smartphone goes on sale today and will cost $99.99 up front with 24 monthly payments of $18.

The Seattle-based carrier also offered some details on two upcoming Android smartphones. T-Mobile said the HTC One will be available later this spring for $99.99 -- although there will probably be some monthly payments involved.

The company also said the Samsung Galaxy S 4 will launch from T-Mobile on May 1. No price was given, but $99 seems to be the price point at which T-Mobile is offering flagship smartphones. 

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