If you haven’t been in the loop with T-Mobile’s new Amped campaign, they hit it off by upgrading the Jump! program, which lets you lease a phone. While I was enticed by the first iteration of the program, I was not yet convinced.
But that changed when Jump! On Demand was introduced. In a nutshell, the changes made were 3x upgrades a year (instead of 2) and no more fee to use the program.
Sweet. But there must be a catch, right? Well, on the surface, not really, but if you dig you find little minute details which may be annoying. So that’s what I want to cover here today: How the sign up process went, what I’ve found, and if I plan to continue it.
First, let’s start with the phone choices. This is a sensitive part of the whole deal, to me. You see, it’s all dependent on what phones they deem as part of the program. In other words, it’s not free game for any phone. However, they promise that all ‘superphones’ will be offered. Here’s the initial roster:
Do you see any problem here? Here’s a hint: Although, HTC kinda sucked this year, they’re still in the game aren’t they? So where’s the One M9? While they spectrum seems to cover the big hitters, I have to say this the fact that they’re missing a key flagship player has me a little worried about the future.
However, it wasn’t enough to deter me, I was willing to give it a shot and picked up a Galaxy S6 Edge. I’m mesmerized by those radical edges…shutup.
Anyways, the price is top of the list, at $32. How does that work, for the sign-up process and the future? When you sign up, it’s best to think as the plan and phone separate. I think that’s what T-mobile is going for here, simplicity. You chose a Simple Choice plan, I went with the mid-range $60, 3GB data, plan. Then you add on the monthly price of that particular phone on the program, $32. So we’re at $60 + $32 = $92. I added in insurance (which we’ll talk about in a second), which is $8. Then with all the little tax and federal/state fee additions, my total bill is $112.
Now, I’ve come from prepaid, at $30/month. But I was expecting the bill to be $100 from my calculation and willingness to begin leasing a phone rather than buying/selling it constantly. But I was not anticipating the fees to add as much as $12/month to that…but I probably should have. Bummer.
There are some things I want relay now: 1) What happens when you change phones, for instance, with a cheaper monthly price, 2) Is the insurance as simple as, break your phone, get a new one, and 3) What if you want to leave?
1) Remember when I said the phone price is independent of the service? Think of it this way: That impact to your total bill will fluctuate as the monthly price of the phone you have does. Thus, if I got a phone in the future that is $22/month, my bill will go down by $10.
2) No, it’s not that simple, unfortunately. Again, it’s my fault, because I made an assumption here instead of researching. There are actually deductibles associated to how high end of a phone you have. As the S6 Edge is part of the highest-end offerings, it has the highest deductible of $175. This made me question if I want to continue the T-mobile’s insurance program or not. This is a pretty high deductible.
3) Here’s something really important you need to know about this program, you’re actually signing a 18-month contract. *Surprised face*. T-Mobile, contract!? Yeah, I know. But, hold on, it ain’t a contract like you’ve known it. The contract covers the cost of the phone (remember, phone and service are handled separately). It’s an 18-month commitment to pay monthly for the phone. If you cancel, you simply pay the remaining balance for the phone’s total price. Which totally seems fair, especially since T-Mobile doesn’t hike up the price of the phone just because they can. But bear in mind, just like any sale, that monthly cost can change from time to time, just like that $15/month iphone 6 promotion. So don’t be mad if someone happens to be paying less than you for the same phone. It’s the same if you paid retail for an item and someone was lucky enough to catch it on a sale.
All in all, I’m sticking with it. I mean, getting a different phone every 4 months and not having to buy/sell full price phones is pretty sweet. Yes, everything is not as simple as it seems, but I’m not in a pool of regret either. I hope this information helps those who are on the fence.
Program details: T-Mobile