T-Mobile announces $0 down for tablets, tablet trade-ins, & 200MB of free data for life w/ no contracts


Yesterday, T-Mobile promised to #unleashthetablet and told us to be on the lookout for some interesting un-carrier phase 3.0 news coming our way today. Well, they came through with that promise, and have announced some very interesting new perks for buying a tablet through them.

For starters, T-Mobile is introducing tablet trade-ins, something a trusted source of ours revealed would happen before any of the details were made official. It’s simple, really — fork over a tablet you own, and you can get money toward a new tablet. Nothing amazing there.

t-mobile talets

It doesn’t start to get amazing until you find out that the new tablet can be had for $0 down (for “introductory” models, anyway). But the train doesn’t even stop there. Add in the fact that T-Mobile is guaranteeing 200MB of free data per month for life with each data-enabled tablet — even if you’re not a T-Mobile customer — without having to sign a contract, and they have become one of the more interesting carriers to look at when it comes time to buy that new 4G tablet you’ve always wanted.

We’re hearing that means you can bring an unlocked tablet that would accept a T-Mobile SIM to the carrier, and you would still be able to grab that free 200MB. We’ll be putting in word to T-Mobile to see if we can get hardcore confirmation on that. Either way, it’s a pretty nice deal.

You do have the option of getting more data, with plans starting at $10 for unlimited data (only 500MB of that will be 4G). Want more 4G allowance? Add another 2GB for another $10. That’s a pretty nice deal, and should make T-Mobile one of the most attractive carriers around for those who are looking to buy a data-enabled tablet.

It looks like the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 will be available for $0 down to start, with the Nexus 7 headed our way under this new program November 20th. T-Mobile does promise us that more will be on the way at some point down the line (including the iPad Air), but we’ll just have to wait until they officially announce those details to see who else will get in on the fun. You can head to their site and sign up to be notified when all of this is ready to kick off (earliest is November 1st for the iPad Air). Who’s biting?

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. “T-Mobile announces $0 for tablets…”

    a bit misleading of a title, no?

    1. Not really. It’s $0 down for tablets. I didn’t say $0 down for ALL tablets.

      1. No, I see what he is saying. The title reads like tablets are free. There is no “down” in the title.

        1. Yup the title is a bit misleading. Maybe it’s a way to lure readers?

          1. Just a typo apparently, refer to Mr. Kennemer’s comment above.

        2. Ah, for some reason I thought I’d put “down” in there. Gotcha. Updating.

        3. i don’t see it as that misleading, if you know how carriers work, $0 always refers to the down payment.

          1. Not really sure what you’re going on about.

          2. i was just saying when you see $0 for a tablet or phone, you should always assume down-payment, because it always refers to the down-payment; therefore i didn’t really see it that misleading. Not starting any beef, just a good rule of thumb to consider when reading future headlines.

          3. You pay $0 for this device if you sign a 2 year contract. Hmm…

            That’s how it can be misleading.

            It’s true that Tmo doesn’t have contracts anymore, but that doesn’t mean someone can’t make the mistake and think like that.

      2. Not a huge deal. It just sounds a little like “Free tablets!”
        Granted it got my click and my read but I felt a little empty after. :)

  2. Shoot …now I can trade in my galaxy tab 10.1 for something new

  3. I’d buy a tablet from them just to get the free internet. I’d probably even splurge for the $10 plan.

  4. Glad I waited/hesitated on purchasing a data-enabled N7 from the GOOGLE PLAY STORE.

    1. This.
      I’ll likely trade in my older N7 for a newer N7 or 10 once it’s available here.

    2. This works on any compatible tablet, regardless where it’s purchased.

  5. 1) Buy tablet from TMo, with $10/mo 500MB plan
    2) Remove SIM card from tablet, insert into AudiConnect SIM slot
    3) Use tablet as a wifi-only model, and/or tether to phone when necessary.

    Wonder if it’ll work…

    1. I think the tablet is $0 down, not $0 cost. In addition to the monthly fee for data you you’re paying monthly installments for the cost of the tablet which comes due all at once if you cancel your data plan.

      1. You can cancel your data plan anytime you want because there is no contract but no matter what you’ll have to continue to pay the tablet fee every month until the tablet is paid off whether you have a data plan or not.

        1. I think you have to pay for the balance of the tablet all at once if you cancel your data plan. Look at the fine print in the image, it says: “IF YOU CANCEL WIRELESS SERVICE, REMAINING BALANCE ON PHONE BECOMES DUE”

          1. We’re talking about tablets though…not phones. ;)

            If someone were to get a tablet $0 down from T-Mo and stick with the free data service (the 200MB/month for life one) then I imagine there wouldn’t be a service for them to cancel, so the only monthly payment they’d be making is for the price of the tablet. I’d imagine that people who opt for the unlimited data plan would get similar treatment if the decided to cancel the unlimited data…I imagine they’d just go back to being a 200MB/mo customer and be treated the same way.

            I could be wrong though.

      2. I know- the tablet is $384 if we’re talking about the Nexus 7 which, according to another site, is available from about November 20. It’s likely I’d not even buy it directly from TMo, anyway; we’ll see.

        Roughly speaking, I’m trying to find a cheap way to enable AudiConnect in the car I’ll be getting next year without being strapped down by asinine monthly rate plans. This seems to fit the bill.

        1. Oh, got it.

          If Audi Connect doesn’t use a lot of data the free 200 MB plan is a better deal. If it does use a lot of data then the $15/month unlimited Audi Connect plan is probably a better.

          1. But if AudiConnect uses the same towers as Tmo, wouldn’t it be better to just buy a SIM card from Tmo with a whatever plan? That way you don’t have to buy the tablet. Unless you want the tablet.

          2. Bingo. I’d like to upgrade from my Xoom.

        2. No one is answering your question….. They are confused about what you are trying to do.

          But I think it might work, as long as the device you buy does not have the SIM slot locked to the carrier. I’m sure they will give you the unlock code if you buy it outright from T-Mobile, and if not from them then it should already be unlocked.

    2. in other words, buy the tablet outright (don’t pay monthly for the tablet, just buy 100% of the purchase price of the tablet). then either use the tablet or sell the tablet, it doesn’t matter. you are left with a sim card which gives you 200MB FREE every single month forever……….. keep it with you, and put it into all your future tablets you might use or have, or insert it into a AudiConnect SIM Slot (I assume AudiConnect accepts tmobile sim cards).

      1. Yes, it’s believed to support TMo. In the prior generation interface, TMo was the default provider. With the advent of LTE capability in the newer cars, it’s said to be multiple-provider capable.

  6. What are the chances that the SIM card will work in a Nexus 5? If calling comes to Hangouts, all I would need is a data plan.

    1. It would probably just be cheaper to do the $30 5GB plan, as you would most likely use 3+ GB per month.

  7. Unlimited HSPA+ for only $10 a month sounds great on a tablet. To bad I only have 2g around here in Michigan and most of Michigan is covered by a third part for T-Mobile so yeah T-Mobile is not an option for me around here their voice coverage is potty at best.

    1. HSPA+ is also 4G.

      They bump you to EDGE speeds after the 500MB.

  8. The trade-in is interesting. I love my Nexus 10 but if I could trade up to the new one coming, that’d be great!

    1. I’d definitely recommend selling your current N10 locally, though it can be a hassle, it would be worth the extra $100+ you’d make.

  9. So any link to the banner on the homepage that links to this? I want that picture…

  10. This sounds good for sure!!! Any Tablet that takes a T-Mobile SIM??? WOW!!!!
    I would definitely consider getting a Data Enabled Tablet now.
    And Unlimited for $10/mo (yeah only 500mb, but 2G speeds will work for me when I don’t have WiFi access)?? I really think that model might work for me…..

    1. I was thinking that too. If I really needed to update my tablet, I’d just tether to my phone.

      This seems like a cool way to have different tablets. Then you can just jump to a new tablet.

      Oh, this is like the BEST idea ever!!

  11. It’s not zero down because you do have to pay the tax on the device so u still have to pay something on it.

    1. That’s just nitpicking.I live in south jersey and go into Delaware where there is no sales tax so it would be free.Even with sale tax it’s a good deal

      1. Same thing in Oregon. No sales tax for now so it truly is zero down for us.

      2. I’m in North Jersey. I have a business proposal for you..

  12. fyi the unlimited data plan via cell phone includes 500mb of 4g tethering data.

    1. 2.5GB. They changed it.

      “Unlimited 4G data includes 2.5 GB of tethering.” – Fine print on t-mobile.com

      1. Yea. That was about 2 months now. I remember when I saw that. I was like “WTF!? Oh hail yes!!” LoL!!

  13. T-Mobile, they’re doing it and they’re doing it right !

  14. It says free 200MB of data with an Active Mobile Internet account. So it sounds like you need to get that Portable HotSpot-thingy plan and you will also get a SIM card that has 200MB of data for free.

    This is only if you want to use the 200MB of free data.

    Am I understanding that correctly?

    1. nope. you’ll probably need to buy a sim kit for 10 dollars or something of that nature. If you cancel the service before you finish paying off the device, the whole amount is due at cancellation. So as long as you don’t cancel, you’ll have 200mb of data for free.

  15. I’d rather pay full price up front than installments, frankly. But the trade-in offer is tempting. I have a mostly-useless Viewsonic GTablet sitting on my desk that I never use. I really hope Google has a Nexus 10 refresh coming…

  16. I’ll consider this once the Note 8 sequel comes out for sure.

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