Uncarrier movement extends to personal finance with Mobile Money by T-Mobile

Screen Shot 2014-01-22 at 13.07.04

Late last night, T-Mobile announced that its Uncarrier philosophy would extend and reach in to the world of personal finance. Seemingly, Magenta feels the same way about overdraft and monthly maintenance fees as it does about contracts in the smartphone market. According to a survey done by Bankrate in 2013, those fees hit a record high and T-Mobile has launched a service to help consumers get a better handle on their money.

Screen Shot 2014-01-22 at 13.07.51Mobile Money by T-Mobile is a new service which combines a T-Mobile Visa Prepaid Card with a money management app. The card itself offers $0 cost or reduced fee services for Tmo wireless customers, so there are no charges for activation, in-network ATM withdrawals, monthly maintenance, overdraft or replacing lost/stolen cards. Mobile Money also offers the same basic features and services as a checking account. Direct depositing paychecks, depositing checks from compatible smartphone cameras, making retail purchases, paying bills and withdrawing cash are all possible.

“We’ve already transformed how Americans use and pay for phones, tablets and wireless service; why stop there?” said John Legere, president and chief executive officer of T-Mobile. “Millions of Americans pay outrageous fees to check cashers, payday lenders and other predatory businesses – just for the right to use their own money. Mobile Money shifts the balance of power for T-Mobile customers and keeps more money in their pockets.”

T-Mobile believes it can save its customers an average of $225 each year in fees through this scheme. To find out more, or to sign up, hit the Mobile Money landing page.

Via: T-Mobile

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  • kev2684

    not gonna lie that card looks good lol. you’d probably get the same faces when you use your nexus 5 when paying for things. “T-Mobile credit card? wat?”

  • ChristianMcC

    This is the reason, in America, I have a Credit Union. They stop the transaction if it can’t be done for insufficient funds, and no maintenance fees, just interest they pay me, dependent on my balance at the beginning of each month.

    This would be more beneficial outside the USA, for many.

    • Dakota

      You can do that with any card. American just aren’t informed and don’t manage their budgets effectively. And buy stuff they want to show off vs things they actually need to survive

      • ChristianMcC

        I’m glad my wife is not like that, a saving/budget minded Armenian.

      • $15454173

        I am glad you know how every “American” manages their money. Did you need to post here to survive?

  • Guest

    not gonna lie that card looks good lol. you’d probably get the same faces when you use your nexus 5 when paying for things. “T-Mobile credit card? wat?”

    • Paul

      It is a slick card.

  • Dakota

    They’re definitely still targeting on price and lower income. Great for consumers to take advantage. But still nothing proprietary that other companies couldnt copy if they chose to. Free Magenta shakes and cookies for everyone

    • Long Island Steven

      You’re right that it’s nothing other carriers can’t do, it’s whether they would want to do it – and I can’t see them getting into the banking biz to serve low income people.

      One of the reasons this works for tmobile is because they are already serving that audience and they already have stores in those areas. Case in point, try even setting up a line with Sprint if you have bad credit.

  • hanfeedback

    This will provide them some of the money they will need to pay all these ETF’s. Very great idea for Tmobile.

    • bkin94

      they don’t lose much money from that. they buy the devices from customers and resell them. They just put some of the money towards ETFs. even if they didn’t get most of the money back by reselling devices, the cost to acquire customers with ETFs is lower than their average. “Big John” talks about this in an interview with Yahoo. you should check it out

    • donnybee

      I’m just trying to figure out how much money they’ll actually make from this venture. It seems they either have no fees or the fees are very small. It seems very weird to have a wireless carrier provide a reload-able debit card service.. But that’s me.

  • $15454173

    What have you got in your wallet John?

    • ccnet005

      John Legere!
      Better keep an eye on your wallet!

      • $15454173

        Ask the people whose cards were hacked through Target if being in a wallet made them safer :)

  • Charles

    This sounds similar to many other services that are out there. That doesn’t mean it’s bad, I’m glad T-Mobile is providing it’s customers with options like this. But I think services such as Simple really overwhelm this, in terms of features.

  • Ordeith

    Exec1: What’s the best selling smartphone on our network?
    Exec2: The Nokia Lumia 521. Why?
    Exec1: We are about to announce a new service, but only for iOS and Android users.
    Exec2: Why only iOS and Android?
    Exec1: My cousin has a business building custom apps from templates. We can get it for cheap. It’s not a problem, right?
    Exec2: Probably not. Hell, we won’t let Nokia update the damned things after 6 months of sales. They’re used to it. I say screw ’em.


      You’re funny if you think the lumia crap phone is the #1 selling phone on T-Mobile

      • Ordeith

        The Android running Lumia crap phone never got released.
        the Lumia 521 has skyrocketed on T-Mobile since they ended subsidies.
        But since T-Mobile seems to be allergic to supporting Nokia phones for more than a few months, we’ll see how long that lasts.
        Myself? I am seriously considering sending T-Mobile a break-up letter.

        • TBD

          And how do you know the volume of handset sales at T-Mobile? I can guarantee the Lumia 521 has never been in the top 5 selling devices.

        • Ordeith

          LOL, you question how I would know and then go on to “guarantee” that you know? What hubris.
          What do I get for your losing? Because T-Mobile lists the Lumia 521 in their top 5 best sellers right on their own website, you nincompoop.
          It is also the #1 selling T-Mobile phone on Amazon.
          It is also the #2 selling T-Mobile phone at Best Buy.
          It is also the #1 selling T-Mobile phone at WalMart.
          now about that Guarantee.

        • DJ

          The reason that phone is in the top 5 has alot more to do with the price point of the device, than the actual popularity of the device. People are so desperate and sick and tired of the other carriers that they will join Tmobile and use a low end phone like the Lumia 521 just to get away from their current carrier.

  • galaxymaniac

    For all of John Legere’s talk about cellular operators offer cellular service and move away from selling handsets, why is T-mobile moving into banking now?

    • ccnet005

      I could be wrong, but it might be to tmo more attractive for potential buyers.
      Too bad they won’t focus more on improving coverage, they’ve got spectrum now.

  • AndroidProfit

    Is this a joke? Please tell me that this is a joke! Maybe Verizon who has a complete network can get away with this but not T-Mobile. This is just ridiculous.

    • Jon

      No one has a complete network. Every cellular company has areas with poor or spotty service and Verizon is NO EXCEPTION.

  • AndroidProfit

    “This is how much T-Mobile cares about growing the network…they have now moved into banking”.

    • Cam Bunton

      T-Mobile isn’t banking. It’s using The Bancorp as the “bank”, just sticking the T-Mobile brand on the front.

  • AndroidProfit

    Are there a couple of loser T-Mobile fluffers who sit around all day and just down vote comments that are not pro T-Mobile? Do you feel really powerful doing this? Is your life really that devoid of meaning?

  • steveb944

    Scheme really is the best way to put this.

    Sales rep: “Seems your credit isn’t well enough for post paid service. Let’s set you up with pre paid service and our T-Mobile Mobile Money!”

  • Chris

    I wonder how many will take advantage of this? It’s actually really smart. Lower income families might use this and once they are in they are less likely to leave T-Mobile(assuming they are already a customer). Or it might win over some new customers who see this and the low monthly wireless cost

  • Kevin Yeaux

    I thought this was odd at first, but I’m a recent switcher to T-Mobile and the two times I was in my local TMo store, the vast majority of people were there to pay their bill in cash. I’m guessing they saw an opportunity to get those people away from check cashing operations and get more people paying online/by phone.

    Also, I doubt very seriously this is actually costing TMo any real money except the cost of training retail staff. Many companies (universities, etc. as well) have these types of white-label bank programs that are run by banks and financial institutions.

  • Cricket

    I ordered one last night.

  • dl_crash

    Seriously, has no one heard of Ally? Every ATM in America Free, checks Free, pays interest, deposit checks by phone. I can’t honestly recommend this to anyone.

  • Glad I Left CA

    Boy, the AT&T trolls are out in FORCE huh?

    This is a genius move. If you’re a shareholder, you should be elated about this move. If you make yourself a household name, you are going to grow. Wireless, banking, television, heck, sell cars for all I care! Just keep growing and growing and growing!

    You guys need to understand something: This industry is going to change. Either be in front of it, or be left behind. Ask Sprint how the left behind thing feels.

    Change, she is a’comin.

  • Ken

    I was hoping for some mobile broadband changes. I don’t like tethering my phone. I was hoping to use T-Mobile for mobile broadband access on my notebook.

  • Erin Burns

    While this may certainly be beneficial for certain segments of the population (who doesn’t love mobile deposits?) Due to not having to utilize a banking account, as yes there are people with such bad credit they can’t even open an account. I can’t help but think this is just a fairly clever marketing plan by T-Mobile, basically getting their customers to pay to do their advertising for them. Cashiers are certainly going to notice this.

  • JBLmobileG1

    It makes me wonder if Tmobile is doing this so they can refund you quicker for newer customers who are switching from another carrier. Or maybe even use it when trading in your older phone for cash. It would make sense. Plus, since you can pay bills with it, maybe when one does switch from another carrier and needs to pay their ETF, Tmobile is offering this to make it that much easier. Who knows, I signed up for one. I have a feeling it may come in handy down the road, plus I could always use it as a way to save up on that next phone that I am eyeing or to buy items from the Google play store, etc.

    • JBLmobileG1

      Another plus, being that you can withdraw at over 42,000 ATMS without getting charged fees, it may just come in handy when you need that extra $20 and their isn’t your bank nearby. With this its like and extra backup for those just in case situations. I like it! And the card looks good too. GO TMOBILE!

    • Larry Griffin

      Switchers are never going to see the physical money for their phones. T-Mobile gives credit that can either be used to buy a new phone or help with the bill…new customers will never see the cash

    • Nemesai

      Correct, customers will only see trade-in credit as money off a new device (plus accessories for it), or a bill credit. No cash. The refund is also a separate prepaid card (Mastercard as opposed to VISA), and I don’t see the process of ETF credits being expedited just because a customer has a card for it.

  • wow, a visa prepaid card for mobile..what’s next?

  • titlex

    Just bought one for my son. Seems like a good card for kids.

  • Jon

    T-Mobile is on a roll! I wonder if they will implement this to be used with ISIS in the future???