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BUSINESS
October 5, 2012 | By Barbara Ortutay and Juergen Baetz, Associated Press
NEW YORK - T-Mobile and MetroPCS have agreed to combine their struggling cellphone businesses in a deal aimed at letting them compete better with their three larger rivals. The combined company will use the T-Mobile brand and have about 42.5 million subscribers. Although T-Mobile will stay No. 4 among U.S. wireless companies, it will get access to more space on the airwaves, a critical factor as cellphone carriers try to expand their capacity for wireless broadband. That could ultimately mean more choices and better services for customers, though Forrester Research analyst Charles Golvin doesn't believe the deal will make a "revolutionary difference" for U.S. cellphone customers.
BUSINESS
November 13, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
For the last year, T-Mobile has earned a reputation as the scrappy upstart of the wireless industry. CEO John Legere has taken on the big boys in deeds and words - some of them unprintable, burnishing his Mad John persona - while targeting very real customer "pain points": overage charges, exorbitant overseas data costs, early-termination fees, and the like. Now the "Un-carrier" has another unexpected move up its sleeve: competing with the big boys on network quality - and outpacing them, in some key cities, on speed.
BUSINESS
November 21, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Can T-Mobile truly compete on service quality with America's two dominant wireless networks - not just by trash-talking AT&T and Verizon's frustrating willingness to inflict financial pain on customers, but by providing comparable or even better service? I raised that question last week when I reported surprising findings from RootMetrics, which publicizes network tests that carriers might rather deep-six. Twice this year, T-Mobile has tied Verizon for best overall quality in the Philadelphia area, where it also scores high for network speed, texts, and data handling.
BUSINESS
June 20, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
T-Mobile has trumpeted itself since last year as "the uncarrier" - fourth place in customers, but first among anyone who hates the big guys' "gotcha" practices, such as long-term contracts or tricky data-roaming charges that can cost people thousands of dollars when they venture overseas. Now, T-Mobile is challenging Verizon and AT&T on two more counts. It is eliminating data charges for music streamed via services such as Pandora, Spotify, and Rhapsody. And, starting Monday, in league with Apple, it will offer anyone who wants to test its network a seven-day free trial on a loaner iPhone 5S. All you need is a credit card.
BUSINESS
February 3, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Could T-Mobile, the nation's fourth-largest wireless carrier, prove to be the most effective consumer advocate ever for America's cellphone users? That may have seemed like hype a year ago, when T-Mobile's colorful CEO, John Legere, first promised to ease customers' "pain points. " But true to his word, T-Mobile went on to target a set of chronic and costly irritants faced by wireless users - irritants its rivals had let fester, probably because customer pain equaled carrier gain.
BUSINESS
December 19, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Bacall needed Bogart. Holmes needed Watson. Cheech needed Chong. Does the wireless industry need its gotchas? Thanks to T-Mobile and its bold and blunt CEO, John Legere, we may soon find out. Legere announced T-Mobile's eighth "un-carrier" policy change this week - aiming again at a particular pain wireless carriers inflict on customers. This time, his target was use-it-or-lose-it data plans, which T-Mobile says cost wireless customers billions of dollars a year - not just in actual overages but in fear of them, which spurs people to spend needlessly on large data packages.
BUSINESS
March 22, 2011 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
A T&T's proposed $39 billion purchase of Deutsche Telecom's T-Mobile would give mobile-phone users fewer choices. So AT&T will try to dress it up and make it look like it helps consumers, somehow. Among the political arguments AT&T is making to appeal to Obama's Democrats: that the deal will expand smartphone service to rural areas; that the combined workforce is likely to be represented by labor unions, and that merger cost-cutting could allow the companies to drop smartphone rates, "something that they would likely be willing to promise as a regulatory condition," Craig Moffett , telecom analyst at Bernstein Research , writes in a note to clients.
NEWS
September 2, 2011
Should federal regulators get out of the way and allow AT&T's cellular services to merge with T-Mobile?
NEWS
July 12, 2013
Like to change your phone often? Come Sunday, T-Mobile launches "phase II" of its "un-carrier" strategy with a new handset-upgrade program, Jump. Customers may upgrade their wireless device up to twice a year, after six months. You'll pay big bucks for the phones, plus an extra $10 a month for Jump, which is mostly a policy insuring against phone failure. T-Mobile also is touting expanded, high-speed LTE coverage (now in parts of Philadelphia) and introducing three new LTE devices: Sony Xperia Z, Nokia Lumia 925 and Samsung Galaxy Tab 2.
NEWS
September 2, 2011
Remember Ma Bell? Well, the Justice Department would be doing consumers a favor if it managed to prevent the creation of what could be called Ma Wireless - by opposing AT&T's big deal to take over spunky rival T-Mobile. As the breakup of the once-ubiquitous phone company demonstrated, consumers benefit when different firms are competing for their business. With less competition, wireless customers likely would face higher prices and even less choice in service. The AT&T proposal to gobble up the nation's fourth-place competitor would end their head-to-head battle for subscribers in nearly every market that AT&T serves.
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BUSINESS
November 13, 2015 | By Jonathan Takiff, Inquirer Staff Writer
Do you like to consume mass quantities of video on your smartphone or "phablet" (oversized phone)? Starting Sunday, the sky's the limit if you sign up for T-Mobile's qualifying Simple Choice plan with data and activate its new Binge-On feature. Out of the gate, it will offer unbridled access, not counting against your data cap, to two dozen leading streaming video providers, including Netflix, Hulu, Vevo, Vudu, HBO Now, HBO Go, Showtime, Starz, Univision Deportes and a big bunch of sports providers, such as ESPN, Major League Baseball, Fox Sports' Fox Sports Go, and NBC Sports.
BUSINESS
December 21, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Staff Writer
Wireless carrier T-Mobile has agreed to pay $90 million to settle charges that it profited by allowing third-party billers to bilk its customers by "cramming" unwanted charges onto their phone bills, the Federal Communications Commission said Friday. Several recent moves by government regulators have tried to curtail similar practices by mobile phone carriers. On Wednesday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sued Sprint, the third-leading carrier, accusing it of profiting from "tens of millions of dollars" in unauthorized third-party charges on its bills, and ignoring red flags that should have made the trickery clear.
BUSINESS
December 19, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Bacall needed Bogart. Holmes needed Watson. Cheech needed Chong. Does the wireless industry need its gotchas? Thanks to T-Mobile and its bold and blunt CEO, John Legere, we may soon find out. Legere announced T-Mobile's eighth "un-carrier" policy change this week - aiming again at a particular pain wireless carriers inflict on customers. This time, his target was use-it-or-lose-it data plans, which T-Mobile says cost wireless customers billions of dollars a year - not just in actual overages but in fear of them, which spurs people to spend needlessly on large data packages.
BUSINESS
November 21, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Can T-Mobile truly compete on service quality with America's two dominant wireless networks - not just by trash-talking AT&T and Verizon's frustrating willingness to inflict financial pain on customers, but by providing comparable or even better service? I raised that question last week when I reported surprising findings from RootMetrics, which publicizes network tests that carriers might rather deep-six. Twice this year, T-Mobile has tied Verizon for best overall quality in the Philadelphia area, where it also scores high for network speed, texts, and data handling.
BUSINESS
November 13, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
For the last year, T-Mobile has earned a reputation as the scrappy upstart of the wireless industry. CEO John Legere has taken on the big boys in deeds and words - some of them unprintable, burnishing his Mad John persona - while targeting very real customer "pain points": overage charges, exorbitant overseas data costs, early-termination fees, and the like. Now the "Un-carrier" has another unexpected move up its sleeve: competing with the big boys on network quality - and outpacing them, in some key cities, on speed.
BUSINESS
July 3, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Staff Writer
The charges were for services such as flirting tips, horoscopes, and antivirus scans. They typically cost T-Mobile subscribers $9.99 a month, including prepaid customers who never received bills showing them. And the Federal Trade Commission says they were often bogus, bringing hundreds of millions of dollars in ill-gotten gains to the nation's No. 4 carrier. On Tuesday, the FTC filed suit against T-Mobile USA, seeking refunds for consumers it says were hit with unauthorized third-party charges on bills from 2009 until November - a practice known as "cramming.
BUSINESS
June 20, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
T-Mobile has trumpeted itself since last year as "the uncarrier" - fourth place in customers, but first among anyone who hates the big guys' "gotcha" practices, such as long-term contracts or tricky data-roaming charges that can cost people thousands of dollars when they venture overseas. Now, T-Mobile is challenging Verizon and AT&T on two more counts. It is eliminating data charges for music streamed via services such as Pandora, Spotify, and Rhapsody. And, starting Monday, in league with Apple, it will offer anyone who wants to test its network a seven-day free trial on a loaner iPhone 5S. All you need is a credit card.
BUSINESS
June 7, 2014 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
NEW YORK - Time Warner Cable Inc. shareholders met on a soggy Thursday morning here, a couple blocks off Columbus Circle, to hear chief executive Robert D. Marcus say he considers that the company's dismal 2013 performance is "old news," and that its proposed $45.2 billion acquisition by Comcast Corp. in an all-stock transaction is a "dream combination. " The sedate affair contained none of the drama that marked the Comcast shareholders' May gathering in Philadelphia, which was disrupted by about 50 protesters opposing the merger of the nation's two largest cable companies because of anti-competitive concerns and media concentration.
BUSINESS
February 3, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
Could T-Mobile, the nation's fourth-largest wireless carrier, prove to be the most effective consumer advocate ever for America's cellphone users? That may have seemed like hype a year ago, when T-Mobile's colorful CEO, John Legere, first promised to ease customers' "pain points. " But true to his word, T-Mobile went on to target a set of chronic and costly irritants faced by wireless users - irritants its rivals had let fester, probably because customer pain equaled carrier gain.
BUSINESS
October 28, 2013 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Columnist
If you didn't see any reason for high-fives two years ago when the Justice Department and Federal Communications Commission blocked AT&T's $39 billion plan to acquire T-Mobile USA, chances are you had plenty of company. The agencies warned that the merger would weaken competition and hurt consumers - arguments that can seem abstract to people outside the antitrust realm. Sure, T-Mobile was a price leader among the four national carriers that survive earlier consolidation. But, as merger partners always do, the companies claimed their marriage would help consumers, too. Who's to say who's right?
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