Mobile revamps prepaid brand to spruce up image

T-Mobile rebrands prepaid line to emphasize network coverage

T-Mobile rebrands prepaid line to emphasize network coverage

T-Mobile, one of the most disruptive wireless carriers in the US, is completely refreshing its pre-paid subbrand MetroPCS with a new look, name, and more feature-rich plans.

A sign for a T-Mobile store is seen in Manhattan, New York, U.S., April 30, 2018.

Tom Keys, president of Metro by T-Mobile, said the rebranding is an attempt to separate the old MetroPCS brand-which only offered CDMA service in roughly a dozen US cities before T-Mobile acquired it in 2013-from the new brand, which piggybacks on T-Mobile's LTE network. Those are paid at the end of the month and often require a credit check.

Metro by T-Mobile today has more than 18 million customers, a figure the company says has doubled over the last five years.

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Opponents of the merger have demanded T-Mobile divest some of its customers, pointing to T-Mobile and Sprint's large combined market share of prepaid customers, which would be over 50 percent, according to data from Kagan, S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Prior to its purchase of MetroPCS, T-Mobile operated the GoSmart prepaid brand, but the company sold that brand and the Walmart Family Mobile brand to TracFone.

T-Mobile announced that it will rebrand its prepaid service, MetroPCS, as "Metro by T-Mobile" in an attempt to tell customers that the brand is powered by T-Mobile's network.

Peter Adderton, founder of Boost Mobile, said the rebranding does not change the fact that prepaid and postpaid are different markets, and he called for regulators to evaluate the merger's effect on them separately. This plan includes 5GB of LTE mobile hotspot and Google One cloud storage. Along side this branding revamp, T-Mobile will be launching two new unlimited plans at Metro, and they come with some tempting add-ons. Regulators are now reviewing the Sprint and T-Mobile merger proposal, and the companies hope to consummate the transaction early next year. Video streaming quality is also restricted to 480p, which is annoying in this age of super high resolution phone displays. Metro used to operate in just 15 cities, but now it is active nationwide with more than 10,000 retail locations.

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