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Tech Report: T-Mobile To Offer iPhone Without Contract

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A T-Mobile store sign. (Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

A T-Mobile store sign. (Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

LarryMagid01-228 Larry Magid
Larry Magid is a technology journalist and an Internet safe...
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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— T-Mobile held a press event in New York City on Tuesday where they announced they’ll start selling iPhones, but will also change the way they sell those phones.

CNET reports the T-Mobile iPhone will hit the shelves on April 12, but instead of the subsidized phone that has become standard with their mandatory two-year-contracts, you’ll essentially pay full price for the phone, but you can pay it all at once or in monthly installments. At the end of the day you’d own the phone without a contract.

To put it in layman’s terms, say you purchased a basic data plan of 2GB with unlimited talk and text. You’d pay about $50 a month for the service plus another $100 as a down payment on the phone and then $20 a month to pay off the phone because you owe them $480 (for an iPhone).

If you average it all out it will have cost you about $74 a month. So you’re still paying for it, but just in a different way. When I compared it to Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon plans, T-Mobile indeed turns out to be a very good deal.

It should be noted that just because the price may end up being less than other plans that doesn’t necessarily make it a better service. It should be noted that T-Mobile’s 4G LTE network hasn’t been completely rolled out, but the announcement came on the same day as their iPhone announcement that it would be.

Nonetheless I do think this is a game changer if you’re in the market for smartphones, dropping your contract and iPhone shoppers in particular.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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