Apr 25th, 2013

When T-Mobile’s “UNcarrier” business strategy launched, it kinda threw everyone for a loop, and not just their competition. Apparently, advertising handsets that can be purchased on the cheap and without a 2-year contract was enough to send some red flags to the Washington State Attorney General. According to the Attorney General Bob Ferguson, T-Mobile’s new advertising direction was “deceptive” and he wants to make sure each and every consumers knows what they’re getting themselves into.

Apparently there might be some consumers out there that believe they could put the $100 down on a brand new phone, make a few payments, and leave whenever they wanted — all without paying the rest of the balance on their $700 smartphone. Crazy, right? Bob filed a court order which T-Mobile agreed to sign and change their advertising in order to ensure consumers are well aware of the limitations of these new “no-contract” contracts.

Those that feel like they may have been a victim of T-Mobile’s deceptive advertising will now have a way out. Anyone who’s purchased a handset between March 26th, and April 25th can obtain a refund for their equipment and end their contractual obligations without penalty. T-Mobile will also be contacting these new customers, notifying them of their rights.

Fact of the matter is although nobody is signing a 2-year agreement to stay with the carrier, customers are still signing an agreement to pay off their phone within 2-years. If they leave T-Mobile before then, they’re simply required to pay whatever is left on their balance. Almost like a traditional ETF, but comes out a little cheaper for the customer. While I’d call it obvious, I have been asked by some, “What happens when I end my contract early?” Yep.

I’m curious to hear our reader’s thoughts on this decision. Did you think T-Mobile was clear from the get-go on their Uncarrier plans, or do you think the American people really needed it spelled out for them? Anyone going to take advantage of this “offer” and get out while the gettin’s good?

[via Washington State Office of the Attorney General]

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