“Operation Tablet Freedom” – T-Mobile Tablets discounted to the price of Wi-Fi only models + free data


As predicted yesterday, T-Mobile’s 2nd of three days of announcements involves the discounting of tablets. Pricing has been designed in a way that the company’s LTE tablets now cost a similar amount to the Wi-Fi only models on the hight street.

“If you’re stuck on Wi-Fi, you can now come to T-Mobile and upgrade to a 4G LTE-enabled model for nothing down and pay no more than you’d pay for the cheaper Wi-Fi-only model, with any postpaid activation on a 1GB or more mobile internet plan with no annual service contract. For example, pay the Wi-Fi price of $499 instead of $630 for the 4G LTE-enabled 16GB iPad Air. Or pay the Wi-Fi price of $200 instead of $312 for the 4G LTE Samsung Tab 3. Voice customers adding the 1GB tablet plan for free for the rest of 2014 also fully qualify for these reduced prices.”

‘Operation Tablet Freedom’ is the official marketing name for this latest phase of the Uncarrier movement, and it removes the cost normally associated with choosing a cellular tablet over a Wi-Fi only one. Not only do the tablets cost the same as their Wi-Fi only counterparts, T-Mobile’s also giving almost 1.2GB of data each month by adding your tablet to your existing postpaid voice plan for free.

And, for both new and existing customers, T-Mobile is offering $10 off its most popular internet data plans starting April 12th through the end of 2014. For voice customers, what that means is you can get up to 1GB of 4G LTE data free every month through the end of the year. Combined with the 200 MB of free data you already automatically get every month with T-Mobile’s previously announced “Free Data for Life” offer that comes to nearly 1.2GB of free 4G LTE data every month through the end of 2014. If you love living beyond the Wi-Fi zone – and want to keep enjoying that tablet freedom beyond 2014 – you can get it starting at just $10 a month with voice service next year.

This latest addition to T-Mobile’s tempting offers joins the Simple Starter plan announced yesterday and is just the second of three announcements being made this week.

UPDATE – Round-up Bullets: 

  •  A T-Mobile 4G LTE + Wi-Fi tablet for zero down and pay no more than you’d pay for the cheaper Wi-Fi-only model of the same tablet.
  • 1GB of free 4G LTE data each month (with qualifying postpaid voice service), combined with the 200MB of free data you already automatically get every month with T-Mobile’s previously announced “Free Data for Life” offer that comes to nearly 1.2 GB of free 4G LTE data every month through the end of 2014.
  • Access to T-Mobile’s JUMP! program and Contract Freedom program, where T-Mobile will pay every penny of your ETFs from another carrier when you trade-in your existing tablet at T-Mobile, including Wi-Fi only tablets, and upgrade to your latest-generation tablet of choice at the new lower same-as-Wi-Fi prices.
  • And whether you are an individual or small business customer, you can take advantage of all the above plus enjoy all the benefits of our Simple Choice plan with no annual service contracts, no overage charges while on T-Mobile’s lightning fast network, no upgrade hassles with T-Mobile’s revolutionary JUMP! program, and with “the world as your network at no extra charge.”

To read the full announcement, head on over to T-Mobile’s official newsroom.

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  • Ryan

    Is there more if a selection in the stores than online? A whopping 4 to choose from isn’t anything to get excited about……

    • bkin94

      Yeah. New tablets should have been a part of the announcement. I’m okay with the four available since I would only ever get a nexus or iPad

    • taron19119

      Yeah if u like old tablets the newes they have is the ipad

  • SEBA

    I agree with others, we want brand new models like Samsung Note Pro.

    • JJCommonSense

      THANK YOU! I’m tired of the Tab 3 being the only one offered… the Tab 2 is a dinosaur and I hate Apple… If they can get a Tab Pro or Note series we’d be good to go! I’d finance a Note Pro for 2 years with the quickness!

  • jozefd14

    I mostly use my Nexus 4 HSPA+ network to tether the internet to my iPad already though… BUT another big move form T-Mobile :)

  • archerian

    The folks who post articles in T-mobile’s official newsroom need to do a CTRL+A and then set to a decent font and size for the article… Its like it was cut and pasted from several places…

  • Robert

    Yay! Another uncarrier move that fjucks over the loyal customers who already have tablets and plans for the new customer!
    Maybe uncarrier 6.0 can focus more on the customer loyalty and retention and less on new customers.

    • thepanttherlady

      How exactly does this move “fjuck” over loyal customers?

      • Robert

        Did you previously buy a nexus 7 for the $389 or were you able to get it for $269?

        • yeah right

          Discounts don’t fuck up previous customers… In the time you bought the tablet you got your own utility out of it.

        • trife

          Stop making so much sense, please.

        • thepanttherlady

          Companies constantly change their pricing, I hardly see that as screwing existing customers. Unless you made your purchase within a reasonable amount of time, say the standard last 30 days I see no reason for your reaction.

        • Robert

          @dominicpowell:disqus even if it was a month ago? a week? yesterday? at what point does the current customer’s “utility” become a liability from the change?

        • trife

          I’d suggest you never buy anything ever again. Because down the road, there might be a promo on that item that will give it a discounted price.

          Oh, the humanity.

        • Robert

          As an early adopter, I have come to understand the lack of humanity…it’s the price I pay, often willingly, for cool stuff, but it does not change the basic intent of the comment that new customers are more valuable that current customers.

          That philosophy, my dear chap, is as carrier as you can get.

        • thepanttherlady

          This isn’t so much about new customers as it is getting people to buy tablets/data plans. A customer that’s been with T-Mobile for 5+ years is benefited just as much as one walking through the doors and signing up today.

          As an early adopter you should know that prices can change drastically. That’s the price we pay for being the “first”.

        • Robert

          Agreed! And there is a benefit for current phone customers.

        • trife

          I can see where you’re coming from, but I try to look at it like this: those new customers are a large part of keeping TMO afloat so that longtime customers like you and I can continue enjoying TMO’s services at pricing that is cheaper than the next carrier.

        • Robert

          @thepanttherlady:disqus My reaction? It is a strong focus on new customers with most uncarrier moves (admittedly not all) focusing on new customers. That is not a reaction but a pretty honest assessment of the situation.
          I love TMo and was one of the guys trying to talk people off the ledge with the loss of company discounts, but at some point, they need to focus on the happiness and retention of current customers.
          Dance with the girl that brought ya and all that.

        • thepanttherlady

          See my comment below.

        • Volker

          Existing customers get this deal too. They also got open enrollment in jump, the option to stay in the original jump, some switched from legacy plans to heavily discounted simple choice plans, ability to switch to simple choice plans, free international data, reduced international voice rates, etc. Existing customers on old plans can switch to simple choice plan, and the existing customers on simple choice plans got all the benefits they added to simple choice plans. Not seeing how existing customers are being screwed. Most companies wouldn’t give existing customers anything. Take ATTs new value plans, existing customers on old mobile share plans need to specifically call to get the extra free data added on, even though the plan price is the same for new customers.

        • Enzowned

          So all their other moves like extra free data, etc don’t benefit existing customers??

          Furthermore, in the big picture, the more customers Tmo gets, the better it is for everyone. They’ll be able to put up the cash to upgrade and expand their network, and fund further benefits to all. Painfully obvious.

          It’s all part of the same coin, you want them to grow, so they can keep being consumer centric towards you.

        • DDLAR

          By your logic T-Mobile should never discount anything. Furthermore, I don’t see how you have been hurt by T-Mobile lowering their prices? You bought your tablet for whatever price you paid. Your tablet didn’t just get worse. It’s the same as the day you bought it. I bought a tablet too. I don’t see any problem with them lowering the price.

        • hanfeedback

          +1, I left Sprint and paid my ETF and went to ATT before finally making it over to Tmobile. However, if the ETF offer had been in place when I moved I would have went to Tmobile no doubt, but I dont feel screwed by them just because they werent offering the ETF promotion at the time I wanted to ditch Sprint.

        • Bklynman

          No by his logic,no company should ever discount anything. Cars,cell phones,clothes,etc Heavy winter coats,and boots should be the same price with warm hot summer time comes,summer clothes should be the same price in the winter time. That makes perfect sense,roll eyes while typing this. We should all protest every company in country that has sales,telling them how dare they have sales. We should demand only full prices! Right. Whatever he says.

      • T-MO Sales Expert

        To behonest I just bought my gf an ipad air for $630 for christmas if i known i would have gotten it for $499 on installments I would have saved over $200! :/

        • thepanttherlady

          You do realize Christmas was 4 months ago, right?

        • T-MO Sales Expert

          you do realize in a sales environment like this. these types of things do upset customers. I work for t-mobile and yes this is a great offer, but it’s also an initiative to gain new customers not helping the people who help start the uncarrier phase. Its actually a big deal tho. every year apple only discounts its devices by 50-$100 when a newer one comes out. This is putting it with a $130 savings.

        • thepanttherlady

          If a customer makes a purchase they’re obviously ok with the price. If the price goes down or a promotion is offered months later and it upsets them they have bigger issues in life. As trife said below, might as well not purchase anything because at some point that product is going to be offered for less.

          Every company has to work to get new customers and will always offer discounts and incentives. Will this work? Absolutely. It’s also going to give that extra push to existing customers on the fence about getting a tablet.

        • vrm

          you should be more pi$$ed at apple for selling overpriced junk and not cutting you any slack- WHY aren’t you ?

        • xmiro

          so all stores should stop all sales because a customer bought something before the sale and then would feel upset?

        • T-MO Sales Expert

          Yeah stop all sales and give my money back and then John legere needs to fly me out to Seattle where the main offices are and grant me 3 wishes. Obviously the argument here is current customers. Customers who were about to lose there monthly discounts a couple of weeks ago, and the customers who are building the revenue for this company.

        • Robert

          Is $130 the magic number for 120 days of utility? Tablets depreciate worse than cars these days.

        • thepanttherlady

          I’m going to blame lack of caffeine (been trying to decrease it) as I’m not sure I understand your actual question. Magic number?

        • mmunson

          Nope it is the extra cost of LTE modem in the device.

    • CrzyP

      The press release did say that existing customers can also get the 1gb.

      • thepanttherlady

        His complaint seems to be more that he purchased his table for a higher price and they are now being discounted.

    • AussieB

      All companiesdo tthat. You want refund for a tablet you bought last year? They could do something like offer a credit if you bought in the last few weeks but promotions, sales, changes are what they are

    • xmiro

      huh? How exactly does this “fjucks” over the loyal customer? Explain

      I’m a current customer and eligible for this if/when we switch to Simple Choice

    • quig

      idk i got a n7 today and just left att last month after learning that i could use my phone in mexico for spring break. Had a good experience there and chose to get that n7 ive been thinking about… just downgraded to basic plan and added a tablet for the rest of the year for about the same price I was paying 3 weeks ago when i joined. all in all its still twenty bucks less than i was paying for a grandfathered unlimited plan elsewhere.

  • dkbnyc

    Now if only they had a tablet I’d want to use.

  • SEBA

    Yeah, it’s like offering unlimited talk, text and web for galaxy S2

  • sidekicker89

    Any leaks about tomorrows announcement?

    • SEBA

      Yeah, free vacation for loyal customers…

    • hanfeedback

      Pretty sure the next announcement is Monday not tomorrow.

    • vrm

      Its already on the “blog” – it is about the galaxy 5.

      Monday there will be a “big” announcement.

      • sidekicker89

        I guess Monday will be the buy noe pay later thing?

        • sidekicker89

          Now** sorry im typing this on a Galaxy S 2 lol

  • spartanjet

    Now just get some good tablets like the Lumia 2520.

  • Now, how much is that Nexus 7 I’ve been eyeing for a while now?

    • Paul


  • AussieB

    So the only catch is you need to enroll in a Simple phone plan too? How are they making money them by “subsidizing” the tablet. I’m unclear do you have to buy a tablet data plan or you get 1gb free at no cost

    • Robert

      Markup is incredibly high for phones and tablets. Remember when the original Kindle Fire was being sold at a $15 loss at $199? Something tells me that TMo is leveraging their buying power and eating some of the loss with the intent of making it up through tiered data plans for the tablets.

  • Ruskastud

    Curious to see the prices……………………

  • ap3604

    So can I buy an LTE iPad Air for $499 on EIP and just use the free 200mb?

    Or do I have to have the 1gb plan option?

    p.s. I don’t have voice service with T-mobile.

    • ssjassassin

      You don’t qualify for free service and discounted I pad unless you get voice with tmobile.

  • Rob

    Looks like I’m getting that iPad for the roommate now. Awesome move, T-Mobile!

    • Nick Gonzalez

      Wow, what a terrific roommate you are.

      • Rob

        He’s been wanting one, he didn’t like the Nexus so I got it, he doesn’t have the money and I do and its not like we won’t share it so why not? It was really just the added cost that was keeping me from buying it in the first place.

        • Steve R.

          Still a really awesome present for a roomate!

    • Derek Harper

      * pat on the back * Did the same thing, except the iPad was from verizon and handed it to my twin so she can share her baby pictures.

  • gr8gatzby

    TMO still lists all iPads at regular price. What hoops must be jumped through to score the WiFi price on LTE models?