T-Mobile’s mission to change the entire U.S. wireless industry took another step forward this morning. In an Uncarrier Amped move dubbed ‘Mobile without Borders‘, T-Mobile announced that it will offer its American customers free telephone call roaming to and from Mexico and Canada. For the first time, it will also include free 4G LTE data. Postpaid, prepaid and business customers will be able to make use of it from Wednesday, July 15th. It’s a killer move, and effectively erases the virtual borders between the U.S. and its neighboring countries.
Unlike the current Simple Global feature, when a T-Mo subscriber crosses the Mexican or Canadian borders, they won’t be reduced down to EDGE speeds. They retain 4G LTE connectivity seamlessly, providing there is LTE coverage in that area. T-Mo partnered with carriers in those two countries to pull this move off. There’s only one small asterisk — the feature is being offered in specific cities within Canada and Mexico — as discussed below…
In its press release, T-Mo states that “calls to, from and between the U.S., Mexico & Canada − whether mobile or landline − are included in our latest plans at no extra charge. And, when you’re in Mexico & Canada, you’ll use 4G LTE data straight from your Simple Choice 4G LTE data plan.”
In simple English, it’s effectively like having regular T-Mobile coverage in Canada and Mexico. Any call you make, any text you send, any data used over the border comes out of your existing allowance without charging you for the privilege of roaming. What’s more, you can continue to use T-Mo benefits like Music Freedom and Wi-Fi calling and texting, just like you can at home. The only thing that isn’t (yet) included is your Data Stash. If you have data stored up in your stash, that won’t be used when you travel, but that feature should be coming later this year.
As you’d expect from T-Mobile’s outspoken chief, John Legere couldn’t help but use this move to take a swipe at his competition:
“After spending billions buying up Mexican telecoms, AT&T’s CEO is promising ‘the first seamless network covering Mexico and the U.S.,’ something ‘unique’ that ‘nobody else will be able to do for the consumer.’ So much for that. They won’t be the first. And they won’t offer Canada for free,” said John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile. “We’ve done this the Un-carrier way − reaching across borders, partnering with leading providers offering the best LTE networks, creating a simple solution right now − then not charging a penny more for it.”
This swipe comes just a couple of hours after T-Mobile announced its preliminary financial results for the second quarter. The carrier announced that it added an impressive 2.1 million customers during Q2, bringing its total subscriber count to almost 59 million customers.
If you are planning to travel, and are in #TeamMagenta, be sure to check out T-Mobile’s list of cities in Mexico and Canada where you can expect to have 4G LTE coverage. There are over 30 Canadian cities on the list, and 100 in Mexico, both including the most populated regions in each country.