American consumers may soon be able to buy Google-branded wireless data service, but unlike its Google Fiber broadband business, it won’t be building out a new network for this product. Instead, according to one new report, Google has made deals with T-Mobile and Sprint to resell access to their wireless networks. [More]
It’s been a little more than three years since AT&T dumped T-Mobile at the altar when it became clear that the FCC and Justice Dept. wouldn’t sign off on the marriage. And while the little magenta wireless company has done okay for itself since — building out a decent LTE network, shaking up the subsidized device/contract model, and helping to preserve what little competition remains in the market — its parent company still wants to see T-Mobile USA married off to a wealthy American suitor. [More]
Ever since the (current) net neutrality fight got started a year ago, the battle lines have been pretty predictable: the companies that sell you access to data don’t really want stronger regulations, and groups that sell things that need you to have access to someone else’s data plan do. But in a surprise move this week, Sprint just broke ranks with the AT&Ts and Verizons of the mobile world to tell the FCC that actually, they’re cool with Title II regulation.
In recent months, Sprint has been trying to lure customers away from AT&T and Verizon by offering to cut their bills in half (or really only about 20%), along with introducing smartphone data plans that give away tons of data that most people will never get around to using. And today, the company announced that it added nearly 1 million net accounts during the most recent quarter, but the fine print shows that these subscribers weren’t the ones targeted by Sprint’s marketing. [More]
Earlier this year, AT&T and T-Mobile both reached major settlements with federal regulators over the illegal practice of cramming: third-party charges snuck onto wireless customers’ bills without their authorization. Combined, the two settlements will put about $170 million back in consumers’ pockets. But in order to get money back, consumers first have to ask for it.
Just a day after rumors surfaced that Sprint could be facing a $105 million from the Federal Communications Commission for allegedly overcharging customers using a practice known as “bill-cramming,” the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has filed a lawsuit against the carrier for the bogus charges placed on customer’s phone bills. [More]
Just two months after the Federal Communications Commission imposed its largest fine on AT&T for overcharging consumers using a practice known as “bill-cramming,” the regulator is reportedly poised to saddle Sprint with the same $105 million fine for similar practices. [More]
Earlier this week, Sprint introduced a new offer for current Verizon and AT&T customers looking to switch service — same amount of data at half the price. We noted at the time that the major catch to this deal is that you have to pay full price for your new phone when you switch (or pay $200), but how much would that cut into your savings? According to one top Sprint exec, quite a lot. [More]
Smartphones are amazingly convenient: tiny little hand-sized computers that make it easy to organize our lives on the go. They’re also amazingly good targets for theft: tiny, portable, expensive, and full of personal information. Mobile device theft is on the rise, just as mobile devices are, and the FCC has been trying to find ways to protect consumers when their devices get yanked from their hands.
Sprint really wants your business. First it tried throwing free data (that you’ll never use and which can be painfully slow) at new customers, but now it’s targeting your wallet, offering to slash the monthly rates of AT&T and Verizon Wireless customers willing to jump ship. [More]
Is your phone getting old? Has it met with the unfortunate confluence of liquids, young children, and boisterous pets lately? If you’re in the market for a replacement or upgrade, it looks like Black Friday might be your day… as long as you’re willing to sign a contract.
Anyone who champions an ad campaign that features: a talking hamster voiced by Andrew Dice Clay; a French-speaking Girl Scout; a jerky, lanky goth named Gord-on; and the sadly wasted comedic talents of Judy Greer — and then tries to introduce the term “framily” into the lexicon — does not deserve to be a top executive at a major wireless provider. Which is why Sprint is already planning to say goodbye to its Chief Marketing Officer after less than one year on the job. [More]
While other carriers are looking to eliminate phone subsidies, Sprint has an interesting plan for people who like to upgrade their handsets annually: the “iPhone for Life” program lets you lease a phone instead of purchasing or financing one. Now, the carrier is rewarding loyal customers who have stuck with the carrier through its years of spotty coverage and slow data speeds. [More]
T-Mobile has long been considered a juicy, low-hanging magenta fruit that some bigger company could pick off and devour. But after years of being wooed by suitors from the Death Star, Japan, and France, T-Mobile CEO John Legere says it’s time to stop talking about his company being acquired by someone else. [More]
Over the weekend, AT&T announced a promotion on its biggest and priciest family plans for data: during October, they will double the amount of data that users on most expensive plans, starting at the 15 GB tier, get with their monthly plan. “Oh, yeah?” said competitor Sprint. “We’ll DOUBLE their double data!” [More]