It took T-Mobile years to finally start selling the iPhone. A key question now is when T-Mobile might sell Apple’s phone via its company’s prepaid MetroPCS brand.
“We are very interested in that,” Chief Marketing Officer Mike Sievert told Re/code. “We think the Metro PCS customer would be as well.”
CEO John Legere said in an interview last year that bringing the iPhone to MetroPCS was a possibility, but likely not imminent.
Part of the challenge is finding an attractive way to make it affordable enough for all of MetroPCS’s customers, many of whom have tighter budgets and some of whom might not have good enough credit to qualify for device financing.
T-Mobile would certainly not be alone in offering the device on its prepaid brand. Sprint, for example, has offered the iPhone on its Virgin Mobile brand.
The MetroPCS brand is also growing overall, with T-Mobile having added it to 30 new markets even as it has switched the underlying network technology from CDMA to the same types of GSM and LTE technologies used on T-Mobile’s namesake brand.
Doing so allows MetroPCS to move into new territories and attract a wider array of devices, and it frees up spectrum previously used to maintain separate networks.
More than half of MetroPCS customers are now on devices that run on T-Mobile’s network, with T-Mobile having now reclaimed half of MetroPCS’s spectrum to use to boost its LTE network performance.
“That’s going very well,” CTO Neville Ray said in an interview, noting that things are well ahead of the pace set out when the deal closed a year ago.