updated 12:24 pm EDT, Mon April 14, 2014
CEO John Legere attacks other carriers while eliminating T-Mobile overage fees
T-Mobile will be eliminating overage fees on all of its consumer plans, the carrier has revealed in its third day of Un-carrier announcements. Following the launch of the Simple Starter plan and the Tablet Freedom introduction on Wednesday and Thursday last week, the new announcement is accompanied by a call by president and CEO John Legere for other carriers to remove excess charges from their plans.
From June onwards, bills will no longer be affected by fees for excess usage, the carrier insists. While this will not greatly affect customers on T-Mobile's Simple Choice plans, who already receive unlimited calls and texts as well as throttled data speeds after reaching their limits, it will also apply to older plans, and the new Simple Starter tariff. There are still a few exceptions hidden away that will still incur charges, such as international calls or usage while roaming, but for most US-based users, it could in theory bring their bills down to a minimum.
In a statement, Legere laid into overage fees, claiming them to be a "greedy, predatory practice that needs to go." Giving an example of AT&T's entry-level plan, T-Mobile claims that the $45 monthly fee shoots up to $125 if the subscriber used 1.5GB of data, which it believes to be the average amount of data used by a US smartphone owner.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere
"The worst thing about these overage fees is that they're often inflicted on those who can least afford them," said Legere. "As an advocate for consumers, we're putting a stop to that. I personally won't be satisfied until we obliterate this shameful practice from the entire wireless industry. The statement makes the claim that more than 20 million Americans were affected by overage fees in 2013, allegedly costing customers of the other three main carriers in excess of $1 billion per year.
A separate blog post from Legere continued explaining the reasons behind the move, as well as linking to a petition on Change.org asking for AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint to do the same to their customers. "Imagine the smile on my face as I watch millions upon millions of Americans flipping the bird to the insanity and pain of the past and joining this consumer revolution - while I sit back and watch the competition flounder," writes Legere.