MetroPCS has once again taken to reconfiguring its monthly service plans after the last major change less than eight months ago, which led to the addition of 2 promotional plans meant to drive adoption of LTE-enabled phones and the LTE network. As of today, the previously available $30/month and $55/month promotional plans are no longer available and in their place, another slate of price increases for their now three core service plans are now as follows for the foreseeable future:
- $40/month for 500MB of data and unlimited voice/data/messaging service
- $50/month for 2.5GB of data and unlimited voice/data/messaging service
- $60/month for unlimited data and unlimited voice/data/messaging service
The latest realignment follows the carrier’s recent push to transition its customer base onto the LTE network, with MetroPCS reporting its biggest gains on that front. From the last update on the transition last year in the third quarter that quoted 1 million subscribers on the LTE network, the carrier is now reporting a substantial increase in LTE subscribers since then, now up to 2.2 million of its 17 million total subscriber base on the LTE network, representing an increase of 117 percent in subscriber growth and 25% of its user base respectively.
The carrier is crediting the increase to the promotional plans and the drive made by the carrier to bring down the costs of LTE-powered devices, which were typically more expensive to develop and manufacture due to the increased expenses incurred by the relatively new technology, especially in terms of chipsets and radio hardware which forced it to initially offer devices which were mostly re-engineered first generation Verizon Wireless LTE models.
The carrier then forged deeper ties with manufacturers to offer more customized models tailored to its specific needs and customer base, such as the LG Motion and ZTE Avid Android smartphones for $149 each, which were as feature complete as the previous, more expensive models, but used less expensive components and materials in order to further cut costs and to drive more customers to LTE, which was widely cited as the biggest barrier to adoption by executives.
With MetroPCS’ push to drive down LTE device costs and pushing down service plans to speed up adoption, its ongoing “4G For All’ campaign is being considered a resounding success, as the reverse merger process with T-Mobile is currently underway and is expected to be complete by 2015.