Metro by T-Mobile

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Metro by T-Mobile
Division
IndustryWireless
PredecessorGeneral Wireless, Inc.,
MetroPCS Communications, Inc.
Founded1994; 24 years ago (1994) (as General Wireless, Inc.)
FounderRoger D. Linquist and Malcolm Lorang
HeadquartersRichardson, Texas, U.S.
Area served
United States
Key people
Thomas C. (Tom) Keys, President[1]
OwnerT-Mobile US
Websitewww.metrobytmobile.com

Metro by T-Mobile (formerly known as MetroPCS, stylized as metroPCS), is a prepaid wireless carrier brand owned by T-Mobile US. It previously operated the fifth largest mobile telecommunications network in the United States using code division multiple access. In 2013, the carrier engaged in a reverse merger with T-Mobile USA; post-merger, its services were merged under T-Mobile's 4G and LTE network.

History[edit]

MetroPCS, was established in 1994 as General Wireless, Inc., by Roger Linquist.[2] PCS referred to the industry term, Personal Communications Service.

logo used until the rebranding

In October 2012, MetroPCS reached an agreement to merge with T-Mobile USA.[3] The deal was a reverse merger for MetroPCS; following the closure of the merger on May 1, 2013, the combined company, now known as T-Mobile US, began trading on the New York Stock Exchange.[4][5] Following the merger, the legacy MetroPCS CDMA network was decommissioned on June 21, 2015, with customers migrated to the two carriers' LTE network.[6]

On September 24, 2018, T-Mobile announced that it would re-launch the brand as Metro by T-Mobile, introducing new unlimited plans offering bundled features such as Amazon Prime subscriptions and Google One storage, and announcing that the brand would offer prepaid 5G service in the future. T-Mobile stated that these changes would help to reduce the negative stigmas associated with MetroPCS's prepaid services, by aligning them with other well-known brands as value-added services, and placing a larger emphasis on its use of T-Mobile's network.[7][8]

Reception and criticism[edit]

The launch of MetroPCS's LTE network was met with mixed reviews. GigaOM's Kevin Tofel noted that although the LTE network is based on 4G technology, "the infrastructure MetroPCS is using keeps speeds in the range of older 3G networks". Tofel measured data speeds "far slower than T-Mobile's HSPA+ network" but considered that users with only basic data requirements would find the no-contract deal "refreshing".[9] Referencing Tofel's review, Laptop Magazine's Corvida Raven concluded that MetroPCS "probably isn't using the best LTE technology."[10]

Slate's Farhad Manjoo panned the service by suggesting that MetroPCS was able to roll out 4G coverage sooner and cheaper than its competitors by offering only the Samsung Craft, a feature phone with sub-standard internet capabilities, as its launch device. Due to the quality of the device (described as being "designed not just to frustrate users but to get us to swear off ever using any phone again"), the network, and MetroPCS's decision to block video streaming services aside from YouTube under its "unlimited web" plan, Manjoo considered it a device designed to disappoint users excited for 4G.[11]

Marketing[edit]

MetroPCS attracted criticism in 2010 for an advertising campaign featuring two Indian characters, Ranjit and Chad (the former being played by veteran Indian actor Anjul Nigam), as their content was believed to be stereotypical and offensive.[12][12][13] [14]

Following the T-Mobile merger, MetroPCS began a new campaign centering around "the power of the period", referring to its lack of hidden fees. However, the campaign did receive some ridicule among those who saw a double meaning in the slogan as referring to the menstrual cycle.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Management & Board of Directors". T-Mobile USA. Archived from the original on June 16, 2018. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
  2. ^ "20. Roger Linquist, Chairman, CEO, MetroPCS". FierceWireless. Retrieved June 9, 2015.
  3. ^ "T-Mobile USA, MetroPCS to combine". Chicago Tribune. October 3, 2012. Retrieved October 3, 2012.
  4. ^ "MetroPCS shareholders approve merger with T-Mobile USA". Reuters. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  5. ^ Rodriguez, Salvador. (May 1, 2013) Combined T-Mobile-MetroPCS debuts on N.Y. Stock Exchange as 'TMUS'. latimes.com. Retrieved on August 23, 2013.
  6. ^ "T-Mobile shuts down MetroPCS legacy network". RCR Wireless. Retrieved September 18, 2015.
  7. ^ "T-Mobile Decides to Make It More Obvious that It Owns MetroPCS". Fortune. Retrieved 2018-10-09.
  8. ^ "T-Mobile's Metro prepaid wireless service commits to 5G in 2019". CNET. 2018-10-08. Retrieved 2018-10-09.
  9. ^ Tofel, Kevin C. (November 26, 2010). "For $55, What Kind of LTE Experience Does MetroPCS Deliver?". GigaOM. Retrieved December 5, 2010.
  10. ^ Raven, Corvida (November 26, 2010). "MetroPCS's LTE Service Tested, Found Wanting". Laptop Magazine. Bedford Communications Inc. Retrieved December 5, 2010.
  11. ^ Manjoo, Farhad. "4G, Samsung Craft, MetroPCS: The worst cell phone on earth". Slate. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
  12. ^ a b "Did this MetroPCS ad make the tech world cringe?". CNET. 2010-02-08. Retrieved 2018-10-09.
  13. ^ Poniewozik, James (2010-02-07). "The Best and Worst Super Bowl Commercials of 2010". Time. ISSN 0040-781X. Retrieved 2018-10-09.
  14. ^ Anjul Nigam (16 May 2011). "MetroPCS "Tech & Talk": 11 commercials" – via YouTube.
  15. ^ "13 Best & Worst Tech Commercials of 2013". Laptop Magazine. Retrieved 2018-10-09.

See also[edit]