T-Mobile may have killed contracts, at least in the traditional sense, but that hasn’t absolved them from all misgivings.
Today, T-Mob bumped the introductory price of the iPhone 5 from $99.99 to $149.99. At this price point the upfront savings have largely been negated. However, I should note that T-Mobile’s monthly plans are still cheaper than Verizon and AT&T’s. And while I can’t confirm this, T-Mobile may still be offering a $120 credit to qualifying customers as well as a solid trade in value for their old Apple handset.
Nevertheless, I can’t help but feel as though T-Mobile has pulled a bit of bait and switch. Sure, they never said that pricing was for an unlimited time, but nor did they say it was for a finite period of time. But, and this goes without saying, they have every right to increase pricing as they see fit. That said, from a marketing standpoint it was a smart move, as a “$99 iPhone 5” sounds a hell of a lot better than $150 or $200.
But will the price increase, which goes against traditional carrier pricing – they usually lower handset prices after their release – cause more fall out than it was worth? That remains to be seen.