When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
cartman
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 2:56 pm

When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by cartman » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:43 pm

I'm planning to purchase service and a smartphone from T-Mobile. While I prefer to purchase the phone from T-Mobile, the price for a Samsung Galaxy S8 is considerably cheaper from a big box store or Amazon. Has anyone had experience where T-Mobile will match the prices of their competitors?

bob60014
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:59 pm
Location: The Land Beyond ORD

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by bob60014 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:22 pm

Why do you prefer to buy from them as there is no real benefit , you will receive the same service no matter where you purchase the phone. Personally I haven't purchased a phone from any cell provider in 10+ years.

They don't match with the possible exception of a discontinued phone, even then it's hit or miss.

open_circuit
Posts: 100
Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:20 am

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by open_circuit » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:25 pm

The only reason I know of to buy a T-Mobile branded phone is to get support for their WIFI calling feature. In the past, it has only been supported in T-Mobile specific ROMs. What this means is that even if you buy a Galaxy S8 somewhere else, if it isn't the T-Mobile version of it, it won't have the WIFI calling baked in.

I decided this wasn't a concern for me and have been buying unlocked phones from other vendors for several years. With all of the other ways to call over WIFI or SIP providers, I have not missed this feature.

Edit: I think with their new "Digits" tool, this may be less of a problem (or entirely not a problem) going forward. I have not used Digits yet to test this.

misterno
Posts: 353
Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2014 7:55 am

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by misterno » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:35 pm

bob60014 wrote:
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:22 pm
Why do you prefer to buy from them as there is no real benefit , you will receive the same service no matter where you purchase the phone. Personally I haven't purchased a phone from any cell provider in 10+ years.

They don't match with the possible exception of a discontinued phone, even then it's hit or miss.
this is not true

If you buy the service from tmobile but not the phone then the phone may not be tmobile branded

If the phone is not tmobile branded which means it does not have the tmobile ROM installed and that the phone is not specifically manufactured for tmobile than it will miss some features like wifi call which is very important when you travel overseas and the phone can be very slow because it may not have the 3 bands that tmobile reception requires

I went thru this hell of phone purchasing in the last 6 months. Do not buy unlocked phones they may not have the 3 bands that tmobile requires. Not knowing what I know now, I purchased a phone on ebay $200 cheaper than tmobile store but it did not have tmobile software very slow unlocked and missing wifi call. I returned like 3 of them only to read and understood later that what I really need is a tmobile branded phone

Then I purchased another phone from an indian store in my city, the wifi call was in the phone but it did not work. Then I purchased a tmobile branded phone on Amazon but this time the google maps did not work so I returned

Then I purchased the last phone on ebay after asking 300 questions to the seller and making sure that samsung S7 is never been used, it has tmobile software and the model is SM-930GT only then I purchased the phone and I am happy now

Wifi call is a must I am on a simple one plan where in 120 countries internet is free and unlimited with this plan. I recommend it if you frequently travel.

PS: I heard now that there is a feature called Volte which means you can make the free calls in overseas without WIFI but my S7 does not have it I guess it comes with S8 I am not sure. Make sure it has that also. Can someone enlighten us about this feature like which phones have it etc?

open_circuit
Posts: 100
Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:20 am

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by open_circuit » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:55 pm

misterno wrote:
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:35 pm
PS: I heard now that there is a feature called Volte which means you can make the free calls in overseas without WIFI but my S7 does not have it I guess it comes with S8 I am not sure. Make sure it has that also. Can someone enlighten us about this feature like which phones have it etc?
I always refer to this (http://www.spectrumgateway.com/compatible-phones) for information on T-Mobile compatibility and VoLTE support.

Specifically, this page is concerned with Band 12 support. This is a low frequency band better for long range and building penetration. T-Mobile deployed it a few years ago, but not all handsets support it. The website also has information on VoLTE for the covered phones. I usually cross reference with other websites to learn about devices before I buy them.

To bring this back on topic:

Op, I don't know if T-Mobile will price match. However, if doing the full research to make sure the unlocked phone will meet your needs is intimidating, you might be best served paying a higher price for the T-Mobile branded device. They will be able to provide customer support for a product they sell, but not for an unlocked device.

nalor511
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:00 am

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by nalor511 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:15 pm

Tmobile won't price match, but they might give you $50 off if you ask nicely, or if you're adding a line you can get a discount on the promotions page https://www.t-mobile.com/offers/deals-hub

User avatar
dumbbunny
Posts: 796
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2014 10:00 pm
Location: Oregon coast

Re: When purchasing a smartphone from T-Mobile

Post by dumbbunny » Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:35 pm

Consider buying your Galaxy S8 through Comsumer Cellular. You will probably end up paying less in the long run because of their plans.
“It’s the curse of old men to realize that in the end we control nothing." "Homeland" episode, "Gerontion"

Post Reply