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AT&T Pre-Empts T-Mobile, Offers Switch Credit
by Karl Bode 09:29AM Friday Jan 03 2014
Recent reports suggest that T-Mobile's latest "uncarrier" effort will involve a promotion in which they'll pay a family's ETF if they're willing to break contract and go to T-Mobile. In a pre-emptive strike, AT&T has now announced that they'll be offering users up to $450 in credit if they instead switch to AT&T.

According to an AT&T press announcement, AT&T's latest offer takes effect starting today, and involves a "promotion card of up to $250" and additional $200 credit per line for switching:
Beginning Jan. 3, under the limited-time offer, T-Mobile customers who switch to AT&T can trade-in their current smartphone for a promotion card of up to $250, which can be used toward AT&T products and services. Trade-in values will vary based on make, model and age of the smartphone, but many of the latest and most popular smartphones will qualify for a value of $250. T-Mobile customers can receive an additional $200 credit per line when they transfer their wireless service to AT&T and choose an AT&T NextSM plan, buy a device at full retail price or activate a device they currently own.
*Be sure to read the usual fine print in AT&T's release, which restricts which trade ins can get full credit. T-Mobile's latest moves have been a thorn in AT&T's side, with recent quarters seeing T-Mobile take two customers from AT&T for every one customer taken from T-Mobile. More details should arrive on T-Mobile's ETF plan sometime next week during CES in Las Vegas. AT&T of course hopes the press and public missed out on T-Mobile's plan leaks during the holiday, in turn making AT&T look like they're the first to the punch.

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reply to IPPlanMan

Re: Feeling the heat AT&T?

The $200 is the only credit worth talking about. The $250 is probably completely worthless, considering that only the "latest and greatest" phones are eligible for this. Many T-MO users are using their old AT&T phone, or have purchased a phone outright that is probably not going to be worth anywhere near the $250 for trade-in value.

My guess is the $250 only applies to phones like the iPhone 5s, Galaxy Note 3, and other "high end" devices that are $600+, and just like other "trade-in" programs, you'd be better off selling your phone outright on eBay.

AT&T would be much better off offering a discounted plan, and offer to let you just use whatever T-Mobile device you already have on their network. They could advertise better coverage, no phone cost, keep your device, etc., and give the $200 switch credit, and give T-Mobile users who switch and keep their old device a cheaper plan (since they shouldn't have to pay for a device subsidy if they own their phone)

But this makes too much since, and AT&T will never do it...which means T-Mo will continue to take market share rapidly. In my opinion, the only thing that is holding T-Mo back is the coverage. As they build out their network, they will continue to rapidly take market share from AT&T. I would swap to T-Mobile if I could get better than 2G service at my house.