T-Mobile offers customers from other carriers a free mobile hotspot device, along with a free data plan that lasts 30 days or 30 GB, whichever comes first.
Hotspot is similar to devices that sell for around $ 30, and T-Mobile says you can keep it afterwards – though there's probably a catch of it …
The offer is the latest incarnation of T-Mobile's Test Drive program, designed to let customers of competing carriers see for themselves how the company's data coverage and speeds compare. It is aimed at those who currently have Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, Xfinity Mobile or smaller carriers.
Back in 2014, T-Mobile Test Drive lets you get an iPhone 5s on a week's loan. The hope was that people would be impressed enough to buy the phone and switch networks.
30-Day / 30 GB Free Trial
The latest agreement is not intended to sell you hardware, but rather to persuade you to switch your existing carrier to T-Mobile.
Why can't you try before you buy? At T-Mobile you can. Try the network for free on any carrier's phone and see how the Un carrier's latest, most powerful signal – 600 MHz – goes further than ever before.
T-Mobile amplifies one of its original Un-carrier movements – Test Drive —And give consumers a chance to try Un-carrier's extended LTE network for free for up to 30 days using their own smartphone. In addition, T-Mobile launches a major new advertising campaign that emphasizes the company's latest, most powerful signal. No signal goes further or is more reliable.
84% of people want to try a wireless network before switching carriers. Nevertheless, wireless is one of the only industries in the world that forces customers to buy before trying. T-Mobile is looking to end this backward practice, in part because the Un-carrier has nothing to hide.
The advantage of the hotspot approach is that you can continue to use your own phone.
Free mobile hotspot, with a likely catch
T-Mobile says you can return the device or not as you like at the end of the trial period.
After the trial, you can drop the hotspot off at any T-Mobile store or deliver it to a friend. Hell, put it under the wobbly table leg. That's it.
But before you start thinking it's a sweet way to score a free mobile hotspot device, it's a pretty safe bet that you can't use it with any other carrier. But still 30 GB of free data is not to be sniffed at.
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