T-Mobile to Change 'Deceptive' No-Contract Ads, Offer Refunds

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Apr 25, 2013.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson has ordered T-Mobile to alter its new "Uncarrier" advertising strategy, calling its contract free claims "deceptive."

    Alongside the launch of the iPhone 5 earlier this month, T-Mobile rolled out new rate plans, which are designed to separate device costs from service costs. To purchase a device like the iPhone 5, T-Mobile customers make a small downpayment and pay off the rest of the cost over a two-year period, while also paying for a separate service plan.

    According to Ferguson, T-Mobile has failed to clearly state that while there is no annual contract for T-Mobile subscribers, customers who cease using T-Mobile's service must pay off the remaining cost of the device.
    As a result, Ferguson entered into a court ordered agreement with T-Mobile that will require the carrier to explicitly disclose the details of its contract free plans both through its advertisements and with employee training.
    The agreement also requires T-Mobile to offer full refunds to customers who purchased T-Mobile service and equipment between the dates of March 26 and April 25, 2013. Subscribers who purchased phones during this time period can cancel their service plans and receive device refunds without the need to pay the remaining balance on the device.

    Article Link: T-Mobile to Change 'Deceptive' No-Contract Ads, Offer Refunds
  2. macrumors 6502

    Apr 26, 2011
    "...but I thought I can just sign up and cancel to get a super cheap phone. T-mobile is so deceptive!"
  3. needfx, Apr 25, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2013

    macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2010
    macrumors apparently
    Can this Attorney General take over a few mobile carrier cases in Greece too?

    Pretty please!

    to clarify, greek carriers market & sell "Unlimited Plans" but right under they stipulate "Fair use policy applies" which actually restricts you (in minutes/sms/Gb)

    So why the heck do they keep advertising as unlimited?
  4. macrumors 6502

    Oct 8, 2009
    In other words, the remnants of US West aka QWEST, got their political crony to force a competitor to make their advertising less compelling, because it was hurting sales.

    Protection of consumers never entered the picture.
  5. macrumors newbie

    Oct 17, 2011
    Well, I'm sure AT&T just blew a load reading about this.
  6. macrumors 601

    Nov 25, 2012
    United States
    I already mentioned a couple of weeks back that while T-Mobile's business plan SEEMS doable, there's always a "Gotcha". Gotta love how they misspelled OUR and wrote ARE. How much money does this company have? Weaksauce. :rolleyes:

    Attached Files:

  7. macrumors 68040

    Gasu E.

    Mar 20, 2004
    Not far from Boston, MA.
    It's good we have Attorneys General to protect idiots from themselves. Otherwise, the idiots would quickly die out, and brainy people would be forced to take your fries order.
  8. macrumors regular


    Apr 25, 2013
    Vacaville, CA
    T-mobile has always been run by crooks. When I told them I was switching to AT&T in a few months, TWICE they charged me some random $300 fee and they never told me what it was about. I called them up, yelled for a couple of minutes and they removed it. Such crooks.
  9. macrumors newbie


    Jun 7, 2011
    Southern California
    Did anyone else notice that it says "From now on, many of the things are competitors do, we don't." They used the are instead of our.
  10. macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2008
    Staffordshire, UK
    See post #6.
  11. macrumors 68020


    Aug 28, 2008
    Beverly, Massachusetts
    The picture with the misspelling of OUR to ARE was a leaked photo. It was discussed a few weeks back. T-Mobile corrected that mistake when they went public with everything. Not sure why MR is using old leaked material here. :rolleyes:
  12. macrumors member


    Mar 16, 2010
    Truth is, most/all the major carriers have acted like this at some point. The whole system is rigged.
  13. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 17, 2003
    The Utah Alps
    Sounds to me like this Bob guy is an idiot. I understand what no contract means. It means you can move on anytime you like it does not mean free (or almost free) phone. If you move on give back the phone or buy it outright. Seemed pretty straightforward to me.
  14. macrumors 601

    Nov 25, 2012
    United States
    Yep, you didn't notice my post above. ;)
  15. macrumors newbie

    Apr 11, 2013
    Surrrrre they did. Why would you tell them you're switching in a few months? I've switched carriers a few times and never warned them in advance.

    In any case, as eccentricglow points out, all the carriers are crooks.
  16. macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2013
    Central PA
    Seems that maybe the Attorney General should be more worried about the morons who didn't understand this "obviously deceptive" plan.

    Legislating to the lowest common denominator. Who doesn't love America?
  17. macrumors 68030


    Dec 28, 2007
    PHX, AZ.
    Qwest doesn't exist anymore... they were bought up two years ago.
    And Qwest and T-Mobile were never direct competitors.
    Qwest was landlines and T-Mobile is wireless.

    Qwest did offer wireless through a partnership with Verizon.
  18. macrumors 68030


    Feb 2, 2004
    Pacific Northwest
    Written like a Neo-con.

    Sorry, but if Clink is doing the same they will be ordered as well. This is a classic example of how come Washingon State will never go republican. We're not that dumb.


    Still does, by offering DirecTV and Verizon Wireless single billing. Of course, their angle is ADSL, DirectTV is satellite and VZ is obvious.

    Each working together to thwart Comcast.

    Now with DISH and it's $25.2 Billion bid for Sprint/ClearWire already offered and VZ wanting to buy some of ClearWire spectrum legal wars are heating up in WA.
  19. macrumors 6502a


    Apr 28, 2011
    Oh, the irony.
  20. macrumors 6502


    Oct 2, 2008
    You're signing up for a payment plan for the phone, not a cell phone service contract. If you don't buy a phone: no contract. How is that not obvious to anybody with a brain?
  21. macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2011
    Bingo. The advertising was hardly deceptive. You are not required to get a phone. Nowhere in the advertising does T-Mobile even refer to you getting a phone.
  22. macrumors 6502

    Sep 28, 2012
    Its still a good deal who cares im saving over 100 bucks on t mobile and i have faster data speeds.
  23. macrumors regular

    Jul 11, 2008
    EXACTLY. These guys don't give a rip about the consumer. If they did they wouldn't let at&t or verizon double bill customers for data then bill them for "text messaging" aka data.
  24. macrumors 68040


    Aug 31, 2007
    Land of the Free-Waiting for Term Limits
    Who's to say AT&T had no involvement; wouldn't be surprised
  25. macrumors 68020

    Mar 31, 2010
    I'm pretty sure this was lobby money from Verizon and AT&T at work. The uncarrier campaign sure must have been hurting sales. There isn't a single person who thought you could sign up with T-Mobile and cancel the next day with a free iPhone like this AG is suggesting.

    There is no contract with the wireless service. The phone isn't free. Everyone already knew that but of course this wasn't ever about "protecting the consumer" it was about protecting the big duopoly we have going on here in the U.S.

    Case in point, this buffoon was no where in sight with AT&T reneging on its "unlimited" contract, blocking FaceTime for a long time, and all sorts of other real chances to protect the consumer. Of course he'll come out swinging for the AT&T lobbyists lining his pockets though.

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