T-Mobile OFFICIAL Policy

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by carfac, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    #1
    There has been some speculation, some fear, and some downright BAD information on this board regarding T-Mobile's policy regarding the use of the iPhone on the T-Mobile Network.

    To be honest, I was not sure of exactly what their stance is... so I decided to call, and just ask, straight up.

    As always, the CSR was more than friendly, and fun to talk with. I told her I was running an iPhone on T-Mobile, and I wanted to know the OFFICIAL T-Mobile Policy.

    She told me that as it was a SIM phone, it would run on their network. (Given, we know that!). T-Mobiles OFFICIAL policy is that ANY SIM powered (? is that the correct term?) phone can run on their network, and they do not care where it came from. They will run it on any plan you have, or let you upgrade to any other plan you may want. Because the phone does NOT support My Favs, they cannot do that. She was also knowledgeable enough to know (and tell me) that Visual Voice Mail is also not supported at this time.

    T-Mobile does NOT care whether you buy the phone from them, or use your own phone- as long as it supports a SIM card, they are good.

    I had not told her my number yet, because I did not want to get into trouble. I told her that. I asked her if I should have it noted on my account that I use an iPhone, and she said it does not matter. She said that their service will tell them within 3 days that I am using an iPhone, so they DO KNOW. She said it had something to do with an audit of phone ID numbers, having to do with their warrantee service.

    Here is where it gets REALLY cool. She asked me if I was on T-Zones. I said yes. She asked me how it was working. I said fine. She told me that if I have any problems, to call back for technical support. T-Mobile techs will get a phone working on T-Zones (which I did with a hack) through their Tech Support. They have techs already trained on the iPhone she told me. She said they will help with any problems getting it up and running on their network.

    I found that all to be good news. I also found it interesting she was able to answer my questions straight up- she did NOT have to take time to ask a Sup, or look something up (or at least it did not seem like she did). She knew all about it, and was up on the policy.

    So there you go- from T-Mobiles perspective, it is all good. How could it not be, for them?

    So, we may have to worry about future upgrades breaking the unlock, but no need to worry about T-Mobile's end of things!

    I hope someone else will call and confirm this. Or see if they get different answers.

    dave
     
  2. npdale macrumors member

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    Sep 18, 2007
    #2
    Is this a UK or US call centre? I'm sure as a general rule T-Mobiles policies are universal but it's always good to check before calling....

    Also I think Visual Voicemail may come to T-Mobile (fingers crossed, touch wood) because they are rumoured to be given the contract in Germany...

    Think this is a possibility?
     
  3. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    Feb 18, 2006
    #3
    Sorry, I should have been more specific. This is US- I spoke with the call center in Maine.

    I Italicized that, because she mentioned it specifically. I thought that strange, and it caught me by surprise. While she did not speculate on it coming to T-Mobile, she did also use the phrase "not at this time."
     
  4. ivi7 macrumors 6502a

    ivi7

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    Sep 17, 2007
    #4
    When I had t mobile in the beginning I was told I could use any phone I wanted I am not sure if their policy would change regarding the iPhone
     
  5. Nall macrumors regular

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    Aug 15, 2003
    #5
    Really, why would they care? One of the joys of using GSM is that you can go get an unlocked phone.
     
  6. jediistar macrumors 6502

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    #6
    You should quotation "official"

    While this is great news for all you unlocked phones, I'd hardly call speaking to a level 1 customer service rep "official." Having worked for T-mobile I can speak with decisiveness that their policy is unlocked phones are valid as they understand they have a good sized customer base who travel with great frequency.

    I'm not saying she is wrong, but stating it as official policy is premature. The iphone can change alot of the rules with regards to carrier swapping. Apple is one company who just might consider legal means to keep the iphone away from networks other than att, whereas other wireless companies do not care as they do not have exclusivity with any particular carrier.
     
  7. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #7
    Good point, and something we should keep in mind. However, since she was 100% up and on top of the question immediately, I did not get the impression she was making something up, or flying by the seat of her pants. She spoke confidently, and knew a lot of stuff about the iPhone. As you said, anything is subject to change!

    I am not sure Apple would have a legal leg to stand on; to me, this would be akin to Sony saying you can only use a Viao for Google and not Yahoo!, or a Trinatron for DirecTv and not Dish. I could be quite wrong, but on what legal basis could Apple go against T-Mobile? And, more importantly, how could they enforce it?
     
  8. ps49556n macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    #8


    Yea I agree, the response you got is definitely refreshing given how competitive the wireless industry is.....still this is far from being an official policy regarding iphones on their networks but at this point, they really have no reson not to be supportive.
     
  9. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    Feb 18, 2006
    #9
    I have always found T-Mobile to be good for "grandfathering" things in. Until last week, when I upgraded my account, I had kept the same 9.95 a month plan I first got in 1997. And even when I upgraded, based on my years with the company, I got a rate that is so low that I am hesitant to post it. SUBSTANTIALLY less than the posted rates, I can tell you. They may change things in the future (such as dropping tZones), but I would bet dollars to donuts that existing customers will be supported at the same rate plan and levels as current. That has been my experience with them, at least.
     
  10. jediistar macrumors 6502

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    #10
    I just have the belief that Apple is a company that believes in proprietary and the definition of whats behind that word. I don't think for a moment and while I'm not self proclaimed expert I would like to believe that Apple would consider legal means to ensure that T-mobile doesn't allow activation or use of iphones on their network. We really don't the intricacies of the deal Apple has with ATT and whether or not there is residual kickback for those customers who keep their service past a certain timeframe. Apple may want to protect those profits and might pursue any means at their disposal.

    Of course this is all speculation but based on his comments today on unlocking and Apple wanting to stay ahead of that curve who knows what means he might take to ensure his deal with ATT remains profitable.
     
  11. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #11
    Huh?

    First, no one said ANYTHING about T-Mobile offering activation. Get that out of your head.

    Second, how- what law- would give Apple ANY right or say so as to what service their phone is used on and which it cannot be? Quite simply, Apple has no say in the matter, and no recourse as to what service you may choose to use.


    Totally immaterial to this discussion. This thread is about using an unlocked iPhone on T-Mobile. ATT does not matter at all to this discussion (just as what T-Mobile does has no bearing on what ATT may or may not do).

    "He" being Jobs, of course. I read the "ahead of that curve" comment somewhere today, but I cannot find it. But, as I recall, it was NOT in reference to locking/unlocking the iPhone. I *think* it was about opening the WiFi store. What was the exact comment?

    Again, the Apple/ATT has no bearing on THIS discussion- this is about T-Mobile and their policies.
     
  12. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #12
    Saying "not at this time" to a customer is simply a way to string them along without actually addressing the issue.

    "Can I sequence the entire human genome on my mac pro?"

    "Not at this time!"

    It's true but also makes the customer hopeful that it may change in the future without promising anything.
     
  13. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    Feb 18, 2006
    #13
    True.... but it is also kinda like asking if an iMac will run Word and the store guy telling you yes, and then going on to tell you it will not sequence the entire human genome, but may soon. One would assume that is something they were working hard at making the iMac do. I NEVER asked about visual voice mail- she volunteered the whole bit on that. Had I asked about that and she said "Not at this time" that would be one thing... but to volunteer, well, I read that a bit different.

    But I still would not hold my breath.
     
  14. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #14
    Could be, or they could also know it is a feature they cannot offer but is desireable so they're told to soft sell it as a "not at this time"
     
  15. jediistar macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Carfac....

    I appreciate your infinite wisdom but how does this NOT affect ATT? You went ahead and posted verbatim what a customer service rep quoted to you and went and accepted it as gospel. Her being informed doesn't equate to official policy, maybe she reads this site?

    T-mobile's official policy bears complete reference to ATT/Apple and their policy on unlocking phones. You don't think or don't believe that Apple might not be contemplating the next step with regards to allowing their phones to be used with unintended networks. You don't think that their protecting of the profit margin they receive from their exclusivity deal isn't worth considering legal action?

    What legal action you might ask? Findlaw.com and look at contractual law, intellectual property and whatever else might float your boat.

    The question that was posted to him was in reference to unlocking, check the logs at slashgear, gizmodo, engadget, crunchgear etc to find his response regarding "cat and mouse."

    I understand your points but I don't think you are looking outside the box at the considerations unlocked service might have on T-mobile. Who knows maybe they'll support and encourage it or they might work to protect the deal they have with ATT and if that means an injunction against T-mobile for activating or supporting iphones than so be it.
     
  16. seedster2 macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 16, 2007
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    NYC
    #16
    AT&T has had their unlocked phones used on tmobile for years. they have no recourse against T-mobile unless t-mobile started to offer an unlocking service themselves.

    You can take any unlocked GSM phone to tmobile or ATT and pop in a SIM and they will as long as the frequency is supported.

    I think you guys are giving Apple/Steve way too much credit/power here;)
     
  17. jediistar macrumors 6502

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    #17
    I think its safe to say that iphone won't play by the same general rules as other phones/carriers have done prior. I don't think its beyond the scope of Apple to want to press T-mobile into not supporting these phones and by supporting I mean not allowing. I'm not saying it will work, its a viable legal option or that I agree with it, only that I wouldn't put it past Apple to try and run the gambit on this.
     
  18. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #18
    I think since unlocking phones is legal AT&T and Apple would have nothing to stand on if T-mobile decided to start an iPhone unlocking service.
     
  19. seedster2 macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    #19
    although I am no lawyer, I think it would be a waste of their time. Numerous other manufacturers would have tried if it were worthwhile

    I think they will most likely invest in a firmware upgrades that will patch their existing holes teasing non- ATT customers with previously omitted functionalities or something.
     
  20. Canuck4 macrumors 6502a

    Canuck4

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    #20
    It would be nice if T-Mobile offered to help you unlock your phone by calling their techsupport :D
     
  21. ivi7 macrumors 6502a

    ivi7

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    #21
    Highly unlikely but wouldn't that be great :D
     
  22. Canuck4 macrumors 6502a

    Canuck4

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    #22
    Lol :D
    Hi, I'd like some assistance on hacking my iPhone so I can use it on your tmobile network please.
    Sure, hold just a moment sir....

     
  23. carfac thread starter macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    Feb 18, 2006
    #23
    You give me WAY too much credit, but thank you!

    Sorry. I meant the thread does not deal with ATT- it is about how TMo deals with iPhones on their network. I did not think that discussions of ATT has any bearing on the topic at hand.

    Its not quite verbatum, but it covers the major points. For instance, I did not incliude the OJ jokes we were telling.

    But you call a CSR, and you ASK SPECIFICALLY for T-Mo policy.... and then I am NOT SUPPOSED to accept it? That is a bit silly. Besides, she backed it up with the FACT that T-Mo has ALWAYS accepted ANY phone on their system no matter who sold it, so long as it had a SIM card. Yes, the iPhone is different (happily so! :D ), but how TMo deals with it should not change.

    Contrare- I am quite sure that ATT and Apple (seperately) have contemplated this. For months, if not the better part of a year. It came as NO SURPRISE to either company that this happened. But they both know they do not have a legal leg to stand on. They have had 9 months to prepare for this, don;'t you think they would have closed this down DAY 1 Of the Hack if they could? They can't.

    Cool- that is a start. Now, lets get more specific... give me a SPECIFIC law that T-Mo has broken... or that Apple or ATT can use to coerse TMo into stopping support of iPhones on their net. Honestly, I cannot think of anything they could use to justify a take-down order against T-Mo.

    First off, I admit- I love the unlock- I would not have the iPhone w/o it. But this is not for me to consider- it is for T-Mo to consider. They seem to want to continue status quo- support any phone that works on their system. Can you blame them? T-Mo does NOT activate phones- YOU (or I) have to do that. But bring them a phone ready to go, and they will give it service.

    Here is another analogy: What if Ford developed a new, super-cool car that got 156 miles per gallon. They made a deal with Cheveron that you could only use Cheveron gas, and that special gas pumps were needed to get gas into the tank... (and, of course, Ford would get .25 cents for every gallon of gas sold). Now someone figures out how to get gas into the tank differently, so I can use cheaper Union 76 gas. Can Cheveron... or Ford stop me from gassing up across the street? I think not.
     
  24. synth3tik macrumors 68040

    synth3tik

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    #24
    it's not T-Mobile you have to worry about, but what ever. I am far beyond caring.
     
  25. AJ Muni macrumors 65816

    AJ Muni

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