T-Mobile and Sprint merger: How it affects your cellular service and your bill

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The merger of T-Mobile and Sprint could change the offer of cellular service in the United States.

Joshua Goldman/CNET

The fusion entre T-Mobile US Inc. y Sprint Corporation was completed on April 1, 2020 in an agreement valued at US $ 26,500 million.

Bottom line: Sprint will no longer exist, T-Mobile will get bigger and Dish is ready to become a fourth opponent in the phone industry. The new operator will retain the T-Mobile name, although the name New T-Mobile has been used for marketing purposes.

The agreement is far-reaching, as we can see, and all of these changes will inevitably have an impact on phone service, from how much you pay to which company you choose to provide the service to. However, the changes will not be noticeable at first and will be made over the years.

How much will I have to pay for my cell phone bill? Now, which operator provides the best service? Below we answer these questions and more.

T-Mobile

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T-Mobile has said it will not raise prices three years after the merger is officially approved.

Joshua Goldman/CNET

T-Mobile Chief Executive John Legere promised the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that his company was not going to increase the prices of its services for three years and its commitment to expand its 5G coverage to the entire United States, including rural zones.

T-Mobile indicated that in six years the new operator will provide 5G connectivity to 99 percent of the population in the United States with speeds above 100Mbps. Likewise, the operator promised to provide 5G connectivity to 90 percent of people living in rural communities with average 5G speeds of 50Mbps.

At the end of 2019, T-Mobile revealed three new programs that they will take advantage of the new network created in combination with Sprint and that they can only be carried out if the merger is completed. However, these were launched in advance in response to the current COVID-19 crisis.

Among the plans that T-Mobile launched is Connect, which has a monthly cost of US $ 15, which is half of what a current plan costs; while T-Mobile’s Metro launched three low-cost plans, which will also be available starting March 25.

In the long term, T-Mobile has pledged to offer free 5G service to police, fire and paramedics for a decade, and to provide broadband Internet to more than 10 million households with children through a hotspot mobile, in addition to also giving away tablets and laptops.

If you’re a T-Mobile customer, you can expect to continue using the same service plan, including 5G if it’s available in your area.

Sprint

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Sprint service will remain the same for now.

Lynn La/CNET

Even now that the merger between carriers is complete, Sprint customers will continue to operate unchanged. Bottom line: If you are a Sprint customer, you will continue to use the same network and services, while current promotions and plans will continue to function as they previously did.

In an interview with CNET, Mike Sievert, CEO of T-Mobile indicated that Sprint users will retain their existing plans and will be able to take advantage of the New T-Mobile’s combined network as they will be able to automatically access the 4G mobile network. LTE from T-Mobile.

According to T-Mobile, customers will use two different networks, Sprint and T-Mobile, but “over time” the two networks will be combined into one, so that in the future they will be able to offer average speeds eight times faster than the one offered by the current LTE network. In addition, T-Mobile has committed to offering the same or better rate plans for at least three years, as well as access to the 5G network, including prepaid and Lifeline customers.

For more details, read: Are you a Sprint customer ?: What will happen to your account following a merger with T-Mobile

Boost, Virgin Mobile y Sprint prepago

These three prepaid Sprint brands, which have 9.3 million customers, are destined to operate under Dish after the merger is complete. For now, however, these brands are still under Sprint and nothing changes in terms of rates and service.

Even after the agreement is approved, the services will remain the same. T-Mobile has agreed to allow Dish users to use their network for seven years while Dish creates its own 5G network.

For more details read: Merger between Sprint and T-Mobile: What if you have a Sprint prepaid plan

Google Fi, Ting and other mobile operators

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Google Fi will continue to operate on T-Mobile and Sprint networks.

Jason Cipriani/CNET

T-Mobile said it will not adjust the contracts of any of the deals between Sprint and other mobile operators known as MVNOs. MVNO operators are Google Fi and Ting, which rent space from a national provider to offer their own mobile service by using existing infrastructure.

Both Google’s Project Fi and Ting use a combination of T-Mobile and Sprint networks and should continue to operate as normal as part of the agreement. This will also be the case with new MVNOs such as Altice, which depends on the Sprint network.

It is not clear what will happen in the future, but for now, the agreement should not impact services on these networks.

AT&T y Verizon

Carriers hope that a more robust T-Mobile and a new opponent in the arena (Dish) can better challenge with AT&T and Verizon – competition would push telecommunications giants to offer better prices to consumers.

For now, however, nothing has changed at the two largest telephone operators in the United States. Both companies have not adjusted any of their strategies or the prices of their plans.

Editor’s Note: This article was updated on April 1, 2020 with new information on T-Mobile and Sprint.


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