Sprint Offering A Free Year Of Cell Service To DirecTV Subscribers

We’ve got a possible love triangle on our hands, friends: Sprint is taking aim at new couple AT&T and its $49 billion beloved, DirecTV, dangling a free year of cell service for satellite subscribers who switch their service.

Sprint is clearly trying to disrupt some of the loving feelings over at the AT&T/DirecTV homestead, where the newly joined couple have already unveiled fairly underwhelming “all in one” wireless/TV service plans to customers. AT&T has been working hard to bring DirecTV subscribers into its fold, offering up to $500 a line if they make the switch.

But Sprint wants a piece of the action, putting an offer on the table that’s only available from Aug. 28 through Sept. 30.

“I think the position to celebrate the merger by offering one of their subscriber bases an attractive offer is just fun,” Kevin Crull, Sprint’s chief marketing officer, told the Wall Street Journal.

But AT&T is not impressed, calling Sprint’s promotion the act of a weakened competitor.

“This ranks right up there with a desperate Hail Mary pass to a petite defensive lineman,” Brad Burns, an AT&T spokesman told the WSJ. “With Sprint’s network and the many asterisks on this deal, we’re feeling good about our offers.”

Sprint says it’d give DirecTV customers who switch a plan with unlimited talk, text and up to 2 gigabytes of data a month, plus a one-time $36 activation fee. The price doesn’t include a smartphone. That’s in comparison to a normal paid plan of $60 a month plus the cost of a smartphone.

Once the year is up, Sprint says bills return to an equivalent plan that starts at $50 per month.

Though some analysts see this move as a head-scratcher, Sprint says the promotion won’t cost it any more than others it’s run, and besides, customers who go over their 2 gigabyte data limit will pay a $15 fee so the company will get money from them that way.

“Once people are now trying our product and trying our network that they’re finding a dramatically different experience from even a year, or especially two years ago,” Crull said.

Sprint, Taking Aim at AT&T, Offers DirecTV Subscribers Free Year of Cell Service [Wall Street Journal]

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