T-Mobile makes a big deal of its “price lock” guarantee, but that apparently only applies to its newer, more expensive plans. The wireless carrier plans to move subscribers who have cheaper grandfathered plans onto one its newer, more expensive offering.
That’s according to a series of leaked documents that popped up on Reddit, and were confirmed by The Mobile Report. Update: a T-Mobile spokeswoman confirmed that “a small number of customers” will be begin to get notifications on October 17, but didn’t specify how many are affected.
The documents show that the carrier will begin to migrate customers on older Magenta, One, Magenta 55+, Simple Choice/Select Choice and Simple Choice Business plans onto Magenta, Essentials Select, Go5G, Go5G 55 and Business Unlimited Advanced. Where customers will move to will vary on factors like the amount of lines. The rate increases amount to around an extra $10 a month per line.
The report notes that customers do have a chance to opt out, but will have to contact customer service and state their intention to stay with their plan. They’ll have a chance to do so after they get notified. The report notes that customer service will be instructed to offer one-time credits ranging from $10 to $25 in a bid to get you to move to the newer plans.
The move runs counter to T-Mobile’s reputation of the straight-shooting “un-carrier,” which vowed to dispel the over-complicated practices of the wireless industry. The carrier was operating under a promise made to regulators that it wouldn’t raise prices for three years after completing the acquisition of Sprint, which manifested itself to the public as its widely touted “price lock.” But that three-year period ended in April, giving customers more flexibility on pricing.
The carrier hasn’t made a move until now, even as Verizon and AT&T raised their own prices over the last year.
But the company has a large bulk of customers on older, much cheaper plans introduced when John Legere was CEO and had just kicked off the “un-carrier” campaign. Back then, T-Mobile was a scrappier fourth-place carrier, and needed aggressive offers to win back customers. Past offers included two free lines, or multiple lines at a deeply discounted price.
While T-Mobile has done a lot to try to get sway those subscribers to new plans, such as restricting its best iPhone trade-in offers to people willing to pay for its pricier plans, many have stubbornly stuck to their plans because of the significant savings.
T-Mobile executives, past and present, have privately said they would prefer to move those customers on to its newer plans.