T-Mobile lowered its home internet price from $60 to $50 per month all inclusive as it pushes a new initiative against cable internet providers that it calls the “big fee deal.”
To some extent, this is trying to revive the sassiness of the John Legere era (the deal has the initials “BFD”), but it also shows that T-Mobile is going after existing cable and landline customers, not the rural unconnected targeted by Starlink and other next-gen satellite services.
The focus here is on how T-Mobile’s all-inclusive rate beats the complex construction of setup fees, modem rental fees, and ballooning monthly payments that make up the typical cable bill. T-Mobile isn’t wrong.
“It was super shocking just to hear and see how big that fee problem was,” says Kaley Gagnon, VP of marketing at T-Mobile. “There isn’t predictability to consumers.”
When I asked Gagnon if T-Mobile’s $50 rate was guaranteed for life, though, she dodged on making a hard commitment. “Part of our value proposition is no price hikes,” she says.
The T-Mobile home modems aren’t supposed to be moved from their registered address, but the new deal also comes with half off T-Mobile’s hotspot plans. Currently, the biggest hotspot bucket T-Mobile offers is 50GB for $50, which would become $25 if bundled with home internet.
When I reviewed T-Mobile Home Internet in June, I found that it was fast in my area, but the Nokia home router it’s using was unreliable. Gagnon says T-Mobile is “continuing to upgrade that device” but also “evaluating the long-term hardware roadmap.”
The current Nokia modem also isn’t very friendly to large external antenna setups, which could improve signal for suburban and exurban subscribers. Since my review, I’ve been hearing from readers in more fringe T-Mobile areas who were sold on the idea of a solid connection by T-Mobile support, but hooked their systems up to find weak or wavering signal. They could use a more powerful antenna solution. “All of that is under evaluation as we look at solutions for different customer cohorts,” Gagnon says.
T-Mobile Home Internet is currently available to about 30 million US households, about a quarter of the population.