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A popular perk available with most T-Mobile plans is now coming to Metro by T-Mobile. Starting next Tuesday, Metro by T-Mobile customers will be able to take advantage of T-Mobile Tuesdays offers. The first major offer that will be available to those customers is a free subscription to MLB.TV. The subscription gives baseball fans the ability to stream all out-of-market MLB games live or on-demand. In market audio streams are also included. Select Spring Training games are available live without blackouts. The subscription is valued at $129.99. This is the sixth year in a row that the free MLB.TV subscription has been offered to T-Mobile customers. The T-Mobile Tuesdays app is available to download on both Android and iOS devices.
The inclusion of T-Mobile Tuesdays for Metro customers is certainly a nice perk. I take advantage of it myself from time to time as a T-Mobile Prepaid customer. But this also raises another question for me. What is T-Mobile's end game with the Metro by T-Mobile brand?
Back in September of 2018, MetroPCS rebranded as Metro by T-Mobile. At the time, T-Mobile's then CEO John Legere stated the name branding change was done in part to try and improve the perception of the brand. He believed tacking the name T-Mobile onto it would elevate the brand's status. Legere proclaimed that there was a stigma associated with prepaid service among consumers who equated it to mean sub-par. Legere also exclaimed that perception is totally old and wrong and that "the differences between prepaid and postpaid have basically disappeared." While I believe there to be truth in his statements at least at that point in time, some have wondered if he also had a goal in mind of brand consolidation. Certainly, over the last couple of years, there have been moves made that some consider to be steps towards consolidating brands.
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T-Mobile Continues To Try And Poach Its Metro Customers
Back in September of 2020, NWIDA asked "is T-Mobile trying to get rid of Metro?" The association reported that select Metro customers were about to start receiving text messages from T-Mobile telling them that if they switch to T-Mobile they'll qualify for $0 down financing on a new device and gain more incredible benefits. The text messages didn't start and end there. Just a few weeks ago, a user on Reddit reported receiving a similar message. There's even a landing webpage setup by T-Mobile to try and attract customers from Metro. This is all very peculiar.
Meanwhile, persons on Reddit claiming to be Metro dealers have complained about the Metro by T-Mobile brand name. They say it's led to confusion with countless customers walking in thinking their stores are actual T-Mobile stores.
Store Closings, Store Openings
Last April, BestMVNO reported that T-Mobile laid off a number of employees within its Metro by T-Mobile prepaid business. That was followed up by T-Mobile later terminating its relationship with all non-exclusive Metro by T-Mobile dealership stores. That was said to have an impact on up to 750 stores. Then in October of 2020, NWIDA stated that T-Mobile may be getting ready to close up to 2,000 Metro stores. Earlier this month, the T-Mo Report noted that Metro by T-Mobile was going to be carried in some T-Mobile stores in rural areas. T-Mobile's Executive Vice President, Jon Freier, said the move is being done in order to expand the Metro brand by broadening its reach into more areas. Some new Metro stores are also said to be opening as part of the "expansion." The opening of some new Metro stores certainly doesn't scream consolidation, but selling Metro in T-Mobile stores sends mixed signals as does trying to encourage Metro customers to upgrade to T-Mobile.