MetroPCS is a United States prepaid wireless service owned by T-Mobile US. MetroPCS offers nationwide Talk, Text and Data using T-Mobile USA's GSM, HSPA, HSPA+ and 4G LTE networks. MetroPCS also operates the sixth largest mobile telecommunications network in the United States using CDMA technology. The legacy MetroPCS CDMA network is scheduled to be decommissioned by the second half of 2015. Its legacy 4G network using LTE will be integrated with T-Mobile USA's 4G LTE network.
In October 2012, MetroPCS Communications, Inc. reached an agreement to merge with T-Mobile USA, Inc., a deal that would "help the competing provider become more competitive with the other national carriers". The deal was structured as a reverse takeover; following the closure of the merger on May 1, 2013, the combined company, now known as T-Mobile US, Inc., began trading on the New York Stock Exchange as TMUS.
* March: T-Mobile Brand MetroPCS Recognized As J.D. Power 2014 Customer Champion.
Merger with T-Mobile USA
On October 3, 2012, MetroPCS Communications reached an agreement to merge with T-Mobile USA, subject to regulatory and shareholder approval. MetroPCS shareholders would hold a 26% stake in the merged company. While the merged company will still be the fourth largest carrier in the United States, acquiring MetroPCS would give T-Mobile access to more spectrum and financial resources to maintain competitiveness and expand its own LTE network.
On October 18, 2012, both T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS Communications submitted official filings to the FCC seeking approval for their anticipated merger. The companies indicated that they would have a combined total of 200.5 million customers following the merger, covering 11.7% of the US wireless market. That number is comparative to the 58.5% combined share of AT&T and Verizon and Sprint’s 15.2%. The new company will continue to use the T-Mobile name and keep MetroPCS as a secondary brand, which will also expand into additional cities. The merger was officially approved by MetroPCS Communications shareholders on April 24, 2013, and completed on May 1, 2013, as the combined company began trading as T-Mobile US Inc.
On June 12, 2013, MetroPCS became a MVNO when it began offering products and services in select markets using T-Mobile's GSM and "4G" HSPA+ wireless networks. On June 18, 2012, MetroPCS released a variant of the Samsung Galaxy S III which offers an additional access to T-Mobile's 4G LTE network. T-Mobile US plans to have the CDMA network decommissioned by the second half of 2015 and all current customers are expected to have been moved onto the expanded T-Mobile networks.
* $5 Mobile Hotspot: Share your data connection with multiple devices with Mobile Hotspot for just $5 per month! (Certain restrictions apply)
* $5 MetroGUARD℠: MetroGUARD gives you comprehensive mobile phone protection.
* $5 Mexico Calling:
* Unlimited calling to over 200 destinations (landlines only
* Unlimited mobile texting to select destinations.
* Dial your calling destination directly from your phone! No more 800 numbers, hidden fees or PINs.
* $10 World Calling:
* Unlimited calling to over 1,000 destinations worldwide (landlines only), including Mexico.
* Unlimited mobile texting to select destinations.
* Dial directly from your phone - no 800 numbers, hidden fees or PINs!
* Service available within home service area.
* $10 Mexico Calling:
* Calling and texting to and from Mexico.
* Unlimited calling to Mexico landlines.
* Unlimited texting to Mexico.
* 1000 minutes to Mexico mobiles.
* 200 minutes of calls and 200 texts when in Mexico.
* $5 Ringback Tones Subscription: Entertain your friends, family and anyone who calls with Ringback Tones
* $5 Music Downloads Subscription: Keep your cell phone packed with the hottest music.
* $5 Ringtones Subscription: Personalize your cell phone and let everyone know your favorite jam.
Reception and criticism
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". Referencing Tofel's review, Laptop Magazine's Corvida Raven concluded that MetroPCS "probably isn’t using the best LTE technology."
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.
MetroPCS's TV commercial series (from 2010 to 2011) features two Indians "Ranjit" played by veteran actor Anjul Nigam and "Chad" who make fun of American popular culture, which received mixed reviews. Many Indians and Americans found it to be in bad taste and offensive, or even racist (due to the controversy the campaign ended in late 2011 and was replaced with a new campaign slogan, "Everybody's moving to Metro".
Following the T-Mobile merger, MetroPCS began a national push, running ads with the tagline "Period Power". Although the ads are meant to show that there were no hidden fees in its prepaid plans, many users of social media took to a different meaning of "Period Power", thinking of a woman's menstrual cycle instead of cell phone plans. The ads are still running as of January 2014 despite the negative attention on social media.