T-Mobile’s New Marketing Spot Trades Carly For Frankenstein, Simple Choice And AT&T

T-Mobile’s newest Simple Choice marketing spot will air during the NBA playoffs tonight and it’s a far cry from the days of Carly. In fact, we’re trading Carly in for Frankenstein, Simple Choice and pot shots at AT&T. It’s clear that T-Mobile’s primary focus is convincing AT&T customers the grass is much greener on this side of the SIM card fence. As Dr. Frankenstein works to explain that T-Mobile’s service is faster, Frankenstein picks the T-Mobile box. I’d love to see T-Mobile spend time specifically nipping at Sprint’s heels and at Verizon’s pricing but I digress.

“T-Mobile is less likely to slow down because you get 50% more bandwidth” seems to be the biggest dig at AT&T’s network considering years past as AT&T struggled to balance their data network.

The advertisement, directed by Phil Morrison who is best known for his iconic Mac vs. PC ads for Apple will air tonight during the NBA Playoffs, ABC’s reality show “Splash” and on cable networks A&E, BBC, Discovery, Lifetime, MTV, TLC, Travel and VH1 throughout the week.


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  • haha .. i kinda like it.

  • ogopogo

    Cash is king. We need to be explaining the VALUE, not the speed. The majority of people at AT&T are there because of the iPhone. We need to pull those people over that are considering renewing their contracts, and the only way we can do that is by articulating in very clear terms, the amount of savings they should expect.
    The commercial is “OK”, but it wouldn’t do anything to make me switch from what I am comfortable with.

    • UMA_Fan

      I disagree,

      Pricing is something customers should discover on their own AFTER considering T-Mobile as an option for service reasons. The first thing customers think when they see cheaper pricing is something of lower quality.

      It still blows my mind there was a full year where T-Mobile had virtually nationwide dual channel HSPA+ 42 coverage while at&t only had hspa+ 14, Verizon only had most of its network on evdo as well as Sprint. T-Mobile had some of the biggest customer losses during that period.

      • 21stNow

        Which year are you referring to? While AT&T’s LTE roll-out was slower than VZW’s, AT&T’s LTE roll-out was inline with T-Mobile’s HSPA+42 roll-out. I would say that similar markets are and have been covered by T-Mobile’s HSPA+42 and AT&T’s LTE.

        • Dakota

          But speeds may differ… T-Mobile store speed test yielded 7 vs ATt 29. I realize it’s going to be different based on location and time of day

        • superg05

          yes and no 3.5/3.7g vrs LTE speed test

        • Around 2011. AT&T LTE was very limited at that time. Verizon had the only viable LTE network most of that year. Honestly with no iPhone, people didn’t care if Tmobile was faster. The lack of it made people perceive them as an inferior network.

      • Dakota

        Interesting comment because many people don’t even consider T-Mobile because they perceive it to be such a lousy network. They may need to just get them to the door, and then if they get a savings, that’s a bonus. If they focus on price alone, it probably will backfire. They need LTE asap… people now view that as the new standard… Tmobike won’t get as congested probably as d the others.

    • Jason Crumbley

      100% agree.

    • Dakota

      The commercial wouldn’t play on my phone but hopefully they did a lot of market research. Multiple issues to get new customers.. Speed, quality of network and sticker price shock. At apple store I was told they haven’t sold any T-Mobile iPhone but also said customers don’t understand plans and are scared of 600 upfront. It’s a lot to explain in a30 second ad. The advertising and PR have to getcustomers stores where hopefully employees are trained enough to explain the details and convince the customers that their attAT&T or vz phone aren’t really 199.. but it’s not Gonna work for everyone. If in getting 3gb from atAT&T for $90 and that works, no need to risk changing, especially since most people are Gonna wasn’t a new iPhone in 2 years (I wish it were as d easy to transfer all my stuff f to a new android as it is from iPhone to iPhone.. Depending in what the new nexus is like, I may cut my losses and just finally get an iPhone to go with my Mac computer. In the long run, it will just be easier

    • Spanky

      I am with AT&T because of T-Mobile’s horrible data speeds in my area (Brooklyn, NY). Instead of taking potshots at other carriers, T-Mobile should concentrate on improving their coverage. I’ll gladly come back if they do. For now, I’m sticking with my 30 Mbps downstream speeds on AT&T, instead of 0.5 Mbps on T-Mobile.

    • M42

      T-Mobile has neither value or speed. I got the HTC One with AT&T with the identical plan I had with T-Mobile and it cost a couple of bucks less. And in speed tests I’ve done HSPA against HSPA AT&T simply kills T-Mobile. Like their coverage maps this commercial is just another T-Mobile falsehood.

      • Fraydog

        You’re making sweeping generalizations based on where you live, which you’ve never said as much. Classic trolling technique.

  • Deadeye37

    Reminds me of the old Geico caveman commercials…just not as funny.

    Still, its pretty ok.

    • Dutch

      Totally agree. It’s caveman, also mixed in with AT&T’s “It’s not complicated” campaign that is currently running that is funnier than this one…

  • 21stNow

    I don’t know if I consider it weak as most customers don’t know about/don’t care what bandwidth is, or if it’s a “good” play on people’s ignorance.

    Either way, it leaves the door open for AT&T to counterattack with real-world speed tests of the same phones on both networks, all other things being equal. Where I live, AT&T would crush T-Mobile in that kind of comparison.

    Lastly, I don’t want to choose the cellular network that a monster would choose, so I don’t see how this is appealing. Maybe they were implying that even a “dumb” monster can see that T-Mobile is “better”, but it still wouldn’t make me want to switch if I were a hypothetical AT&T customer.

    • Nick Gonzalez

      Hilarious last paragraph my friend, that made me laugh!

    • UMA_Fan

      I think the point was the monster wasn’t dumb he was just a regular guy

  • Will

    Hot women make me want to spend money. Monsters do not. Just saying.

  • Enzowned

    I laughed, but I do agree the focus should be the value, the backend is just the icing on the cake maybe?

    • UMA_Fan

      Nah, should be the reverse. If they come because they believe in the quality of service, the pricing will be the icing on the cake. If they come because of price alone… well there will always be cheaper options out there if you are a nationwide carrier.

      • Adrayven

        Agree, they need to kill the inferior network reputation. Thats got to be top priority.

  • UMA_Fan

    T-Mobile has always been losing customers seeking a perceived ‘higher end’ experience to at&t/Verizon and to lower end pricing from mvno’s and regional carriers.

    I think T-Mobile is betting they can shift at&t into that spot. Those seeking thorough coverage in the boonies will still go to Verizon but there will be no point for many many people to go with at&t. The boonies are the boonies because not many people go there.

    T-Mobile marketing will still need to eventually answer the question why a future Sprint customer that has LTE in most major cities should switch to T-Mobile. Especially when they are asked to forgo device subsidies to pay about the same a month with an installment plan. It would be more difficult for that customer to be aware of benefits like the ease of paying of your remaining installments to upgrade to newer devices faster, for example. They will be a lot more hesitant to switch from the traditional wireless purchase experience.

    I really like this commercial. It’s genuinely funny for a commercial, gets the point across, and most importantly of all makes T-Mobile feel like a ‘big’ carrier.

    • ogopogo

      We are all tip-toeing around the issue. T-Mobile lost customers to other carriers because of the LACK of the iPhone – Not because of pricing.

      Notice that Verizon NEVER changes their tune – they tout their coverage. They never speak of pricing, and they don’t get into the inner workings of their technology. All everyone knows about Verizon consistently is: Verizon = Coverage AND LTE.

      T-Mobile did quite well up until the iPhone was introduced. Their message floundered. What is their message now? I’m not really sure. From a branding perspective I can’t assume that they are still the “Value” leader…..What are they?

      Keep in mind that the majority of smartphone users are not technical people – HSPA+ doesn’t mean anything to them. AT&T is in a precarious position right now if we can be consistent with the message and really drive home the value that T-Mobile provides, because for the first time since the iPhone was introduced, the smartphone playing field has been leveled.

      • thepanttherlady

        Lack of carrying the iPhone is only one reason T-Mobile was losing customers, not THE reason.

        • ogopogo

          Correction – Lack of carrying the iPhone is the single most contributing factor as to why people left to other carriers. You are correct though – it is not the ONLY reason.

        • I would agree with that assessment. Many people left Tmobile after getting frustrated waiting year after year for them to get the iPhone. Many of the new activations we are getting now in my area are from former Tmobile customers who are coming back (mainly from Sprint) because we now finally have the iPhone.

        • GinaDee

          When you provide sucky service to most of geographic America with GPRS for hundreds of miles in any which direction people start to notice that the nationwide 4G network that isn’t really isn’t!

          People want fast networks wherever they go not just when they are at home. When you have to endure 5 minutes of buffering everytime you launch YouTube or get the “no internet connection,” when trying to stream Spotify you start to notice that paying less doesn’t equate to a better network experience.

        • mgldan

          People who buy phones based on the strongest overall network are going to choose Verizon, always. But they will end up paying hundreds of dollars more for the privilege of being covered. It makes sense if you travel, but not in many other cases.

          If we’re going to generalize, I would say most people use their phones in three places: their work, their home, and their friends, who generally live near one of those two options. You spend the majority of your time in those places, so you should buy the cheapest service that you can live with that meets your needs in those places.

          For me that’s TMo.

        • The vast majority of people use their devices at home, work, and a couple of other spots in their towns. Surprisingly most Americans do not take 3-4hr road trips on a regular basis. Sure I could pay $100 more per month to Verizon if I want capped LTE for those few times a year that I may take a long road trip, but is that worth an extra $1000 to me? Nope. If T-Mobile is GPRS everywhere you’re going then by all means dump them and head on over to Verizon. They would be happy to have your money.

        • Spanky

          I’ll believe that if I see T-Mobile add millions of customers this year. iPhone is not the be all, end all.

        • ogopogo

          That’s not the point. T-Mobile already lost millions of potential iPhone customers when Vz and Sprint gained it after the AT&T exclusivity period. They will never get those millions back.
          Unfortunately, it has left T-Mobile with a tarnished reputation for not having an ios device on their network.

        • Dakota

          It wasn’t just not having the iPhone for users who wanted one but also affecting perception. Is T-Mobilenot good enough for Apple to allow the iPhone on their network? Something must be wrong with T-Mobile.. Oh yeah, they have sorry coverage and low speeds and cater to teens and lower end phones

        • NoOne

          The iPhone issue is that on TMO, Apple would have to modify the phone to work on TMO frequencies.

          This is one reason that TMO is now getting the iPhone, as they’ve been realigning their frequencies.

      • 21stNow

        Verizon Wireless can’t advertise on their pricing because it is the highest in the industry. Coverage is VZW’s competitive advantage and they are wise to advertise based on this. T-Mobile’s competitive advantage is service cost and they should advertise based on that.

        I don’t think that T-Mobile lost customers to other carriers primarily because of the iPhone. Verizon Wireless maintained their #1 position as far as number of subscribers from 2007-2011 without the iPhone.

        • Dion Mac

          That had more to do with a Merger to start with, then the perception of best coverage, and thus this nations issue with always having to keep up with the Jones. Kick ass commercials helped too.,

    • I think it’s pretty easy to steal Sprint customers do to the terrible 3G network. Their LTE coverage is still extremely limited and many of the markets they chose to go live with first are smaller cities for some reason. With their constant delays it wouldn’t surprise me if Tmobile catches up with them in LTE coverage later this year.

      I think the reason Tmobile has chosen to ignore Sprint is because AT&T presents the easiest opportunity to steal customers. Since an unlocked AT&T device can be brought over at no expense to Tmobile other than providing service. Plus the price difference is much greater than with Sprint so they can argue both price and network quality.

      As for Verizon I believe they choose not to attack them because their network is too strong. Verizon is generally accepted by consumers as the best overall network for coverage as well as data since they have LTE almost everywhere. Tmobile really has no leg to stand on against them other than price and people know Verizon costs more but ‘works’ almost everywhere. It doesn’t have the perceived inefficiencies and dropped call reputation that AT&T does.

      • Dion Mac

        Why not do what both Verizon and Sprint did… Go after all three at the same time. Sprint with the data limitation commercial back in 2011 and Verizon with the which carrier would you go with based of this chart of LTE city coverage.

        Verizon you cost too much, we’re in a recession.
        AT&T your network in New York just can’t keep up… Tell you what give me half your customers… We’ll still have the backhaul to handle all of us and you well… well you’ll be at least a lil faster right?
        And Sprint… sweet, sad, slow Sprint… Hows that 2G LTE coming along?


        • Spanky

          “AT&T your network in New York just can’t keep up… ” This may have been true back in 2007, but is certainly not the case today. See my previous posts.

      • GinaDee

        AT&T’s churn says otherwise but I’m sure you forgot that particular metric.

        • Churn is based on several factors, it’s not just a number. Sprint with their horrible network stopped their churn the quarter after they got the iPhone so trust me it’s just not based on network quality. From being with AT&T from 2010-2012, I can personally tell you they had more dropped calls than any other network (even Sprint) and I’ve been with them all. Of course this is speaking on my area. They might be stellar in your area.

  • kev2684

    i love how T-Mobile is completely ignoring Sprint like it’s not even there lol

    • Patrick

      why take shots at Sprint when you’re well on your way to passing it?

      • I wouldn’t really say they are “well on their way” to passing them. Sprint isn’t losing customers faster than T-Mobile is gaining customers and in fact, up until the last quarter, the opposite would true.

        • superg05

          sprint sucks in alot of areas and alot of t-mobile customers ran to sprint when the AT&T thing was going down but they should attack them they are far better than sprint in most areas take there customer base absorb to number 3 allot of people are interested in the uncarrier plans the buzz is good but talking shitznits about a company that could easily put you on blast about your largely edge and Gprs covered areas is in ads all day every day for week to smite you is stupid.
          i know there targeting them because there GSM and its easier for customers to migrate if AT&t lets them keep the same phone

      • mgldan

        I would say that there’s nothing to be gained by attacking Sprint. Sprint isn’t cool, Sprint doesn’t have the best network, and Sprint’s certainly not the cheapest. What would you gain by winning that argument?

      • T-Mobile has a long way to go to catch up with Sprint.

    • Sometimes I wonder how Sprint even has more customers. Must be from the customer base they had in place prior to the smartphone age.

  • Dakota

    At Apple store this weekend, floor manager said he had no T-Mobile ones to try. Said T-Mobile has reputation of being a weak, slow network with poor coverage favored by teens and people actually view it as worse than Sprint. Then did speed tests where my tmo phone got a4 and his AT&T iPhone was at 30mbps. He said it’s never been lower than 25 and showed me how quick websites opened. Said he was fine with 3G but when saw this, he paid full price for iPhone 5 but also gets a plan discount of only paying $35/month

    • guest911

      3/10 poor effort. Troll Harder Next Time

    • Adrayven

      So you work for ATT then? Nice, good benefits?

  • Metro PCS

    God, T-Mobile has really aweful marketing, apparently they did not lay off enough of them! Just keep it simple, explain your rates, show your good phones!

    • I agree it’s like the last one with the mouse traps. Seems too complicated to get their point across.

      They need to focus on advertising price and how customers can get high end phones for so little upfront. They need to play to their strengths. Customers are still shocked when I explain to them how cheap the uncarrier plans are. Tmobile needs to find a way to explain this through commercials.

      • TBN27

        They did that before and it didn’t work

    • OnlineRefugee

      Well even Apple marketing has been criticized at times, as well as all companies. Somewhere there are people who don’t like what everyone else considered great.

      E.g., while business people, or parent types can’t relate to this spot, it is not targeted to them.

  • GinaDee

    Gee. Someone should run an ad showing how much GPRS and EDGE T-Mobile has all over the country. Talk about really slowing down.

    I’m in a HSPA+ 42 Mbps market with T-Mobile. My speeds are still 200 Kbps on a good day when the phone isn’t bouncing to 2G.

    I don’t get T-Mobile’s point unless they are trying to straight out mislead customers.

    • Khalints

      Yes im calling bs. I get 15mbps constantly and people with LTE are getting 25-35 down. You’re either in the middle of nowhere or lying. Why not say which “42mbps market” you’re in, to see if people in the same market agree with you lol

      • Dion Mac

        Well I hope you got three-way cause I’m calling it too!

      • mgldan

        Well, I work in the middle of nowhere (northern NJ), and brought my iPhone 5 to work for the first time today. It said “4G” in the corner – shocking! – but the speeds were more in line with what I expected: 0.26 Mbps down, 0.62 Mbps up.

        I knew from having an iPhone 4S that the area where I work was not refarmed, but since TMo’s coverage map shows “Excellent” 3G/4G coverage at my work, I thought it’d at least break 1 Mbps now that I have 1700/2100 support. :(

        The truly HSPA+ areas near me are great. 6 down, 2 up, minimum.

      • GinaDee

        Sorry non believer. Look up Ontario, CA. We are blanketed with HSPA+ 42. Speeds have always sucked here.

        Please don’t claim “consistently getting 15 Mbps down,” cause we all know T-Mobile’s coverage is spotty and you only get those speeds when camping under a cell site at 2AM. Those speeds do not span miles of city sprawl anywhere. T-Mobile can’t afford the backhaul to do that.

        Go inside any large building in downtown LA and you either get EDGE or no service.

        I know this is a T-Mobile enthusiast site but making false claims does nobody any good.

        • RobotChupacabra

          Not to be all “T-Mobile fan,” but I’m going to call BS. Getting 200kbps on the HSPA+ network is almost impossible. You also don’t need to be camped out under a cell site to get 10+ Mbps. Why do I get 10+ Mbps in Midtown Manhattan and in Brooklyn? My phone isn’t magic. Nobody is pretending T-Mo’s network is magic (any sane person admits they seriously lack in rural areas), but when you make up stuff like 200kbps on HSPA+ and claim getting consistent speeds is impossible, you look rather a bit if a fool.

        • Spanky

          Run a quick speed test around 18th Avenue and Cropsey Avenue in Brooklyn, and you’ll get blazing fast speeds of about 0.5 Mbps downstream. Walk a few blocks to 18th Avenue and 79th Street and run another speed test. You’ll get about 0.07-0.09 Mbps downstream. This is supposedly a HSPA+ 42 area.

        • RobotChupacabra

          That’ll be on the way for me next week, so I will try and get a speed test if I remember. I usually get ~20 Mbps down, ~1.5 Mbps up in Bensonhurst, though, so your experience is odd to me.

        • Spanky

          In the interest of full disclosure, my phone was HSPA+ 21. However, that should still have allowed me to get decent data speeds. I reported this issue to T-Mobile several times and they initially acknowledged that there is a problem with the cell site in my area. A year later (yes, this went on for a year!), they said that there are no problems in my area and that the problem is with my phone. Meanwhile, everyone other T-Mobile subscriber I know had the same exact issue.

        • superg05

          ask for a new sim please and report back

      • Spanky

        I’m in the Bensonhurst area of Brooklyn, NY, which is a HSPA+ 42 market (according to T-Mobile’s coverage maps, anyway). My downstream speeds on T-Mobile topped out at 0.5 Mbps. As I’ve said earlier, instead of taking potshots at other carriers, T-Mobile needs to concentrate on improving their coverage.

    • I too am interested to find out what this mystery HSPA+ 42 market is that only gets 200kbps download speeds.

  • philly8

    How is this going to convince anyone to switch? If customers don’t understand what 4g and what a megabite is how can you expect them to understand this commerical? More bandwith? Give me a break. Its so frustrating to see this while my phone gets 3 mbps download and my friend with ATT gets 15mbps in the same room.

  • A Current Tmo Customer

    I agree with Will below. I don’t understand why they got rid of Carly. I think they should bring her back, and actually allow her to speak (in her black leather outfit), and tell people why T-Mobile is the right choice.

    • Mark

      Carly has said on Twitter that she’s still part of the T-Mobile family. Not sure if that means she’ll be back on screen or if she just uses them as her cell provider :)

      • OnlineRefugee

        That is code for her still being under her five year contract. T-Mobile has to pay her, even if they don’t use her for spots on TV.

        I assume T-Mobile will have her show up to VIP parties, shows, conventions, and conferences.

        And the Parties never know, they might resurrect “the T-Mobile girl.” It is just for now they are using a different marketing campaign.

  • Alex Zapata

    Oh no, we’ve become the advertisement hipsters.

    • TechHog

      I missed Carly before it was cool.

  • OnlineRefugee

    Not sure on the Frankenstein connection, but the spot did make me laugh, a “Harvard grad” Frankenstein who takes offense at the M word.

    While I always enjoyed Carly, when there’s a dramatic new way of doing business, you can’t use the “old” spokesperson, no matter how hot she is.

    New T-Mobile = all new blood, including the message (aka “goodbye Carly.”)

    P.s. I am tapping on my computer monitor… “Psst… Carly, you can always move in with me if money is tight. We can lounge about, eat snacks, drink fine wine, and talk smack about T-Mobile . Shoot me an e-mail. Warning: you gotta pay your own plane ticket to my house.”

  • tmomanager

    the quality of our network is too bad we have customers all day complaining about reception , on the other hand a lot’s of new accs generated for the new uncarrier plan … and this company is working on the way is going to look on wallstreet that is not even worry for store inventory we are running out of phones ! mostly upgrades and acts but also bbz10 and iphone 5 returns believed or not !