T-Mobile, dubbing itself the 'un-carrier,' will offer a no-contract iPhone

T-Mobile will sell a range of smartphones, including the iPhone, without any contracts. 

A contract-less iPhone is coming to T-Mobile.

According to Fierce Wireless, the wireless carrier market in the US breaks down something like this: AT&T and Verizon leading the pack, with over a hundred million subscribers each, and Sprint and T-Mobile in a distant third and fourth, respectively. Which is why it makes sense that T-Mobile, with its roughly 33 million subscribers, would want to do something drastic to catch up to the market leaders. 

On Tuesday, T-Mobile – a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom – announced it would entirely do away with contracts, and allow consumers to get their hands on devices such as the iPhone without locking themselves into a two-year voice and data agreement. Of course, no contracts also means unsubsidized phones, which can be very expensive.

For instance, an unsubsidized iPhone (a device previously unavailable on T-Mobile) will set you back $650, as opposed to the subsidized price of $199.

But T-Mobile says it will offer what essentially amounts to a mortgage on your new iPhone: If you don't want to plunk down the full $650, you can choose to fork over a downpayment of $100, plus a set amount a month on top of your data and voice fees, until the device is fully paid off. (CNET has noted that you won't incur interest charges on those payments, so "[w]hen you add up the deposit, plus any installments, it equals the price of the phone if you were to pay full price at the time of purchase.") 

In a statement today, John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile USA, called the move "bold" – a direct attack on what he described as the "out-of-touch wireless club. This is an industry filled with ridiculously confusing contracts, limits on how much data you can use or when you can upgrade, and monthly bills that make little sense," he added. "As America’s Un-carrier, we are changing all of that and bringing common sense to wireless."

It's worth noting that it's not just the iPhone that's going contract-less – other devices, including the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One smartphones, will be sold under the same plan. 

The T-Mobile iPhone will be available on April 12. 

For more tech news, follow us on Twitter @venturenaut.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.