Sprint Targets T-Mobile With Unlimited Freedom Plans, CEO Calls John Legere Copycat ‘Con Artist’
Things are getting pretty nasty in the wireless carrier wars. Verizon Wireless and AT&T recently revamped their mobile plans with little fanfare — both companies juggled prices and data allotments while dropping overage charges (in exchange for throttled data speeds) in an effort to become more customer-friendly.
T-Mobile fired back with T-Mobile ONE unlimited plans that seem great on the surface, but charge you extra for HD video streaming and full 4G LTE tethering speeds. But of course, T-Mobile CEO John Legere couldn’t announce the new plans without using inflammatory language, stating, “Dumb and Dumber can’t do this. They’ve been running away from unlimited data for years now, because they built their networks for phone calls, not for how people use smartphones today. I hope AT&T and Verizon try to follow us. In fact, I challenge them to try.”
Sprint didn’t want to be left out of when everyone else is shuffling their wireless plans, so it has launched Unlimited Freedom. Sprint’s new plan largely matches up with T-Mobile ONE, offering unlimited data, calling, texting and “optimized streaming video.” Sprint does, however, undercut T-Mobile ONE on pricing for both one- and two-line accounts. Sprint charges $60 for a single line (compared to $70) and $100 for two lines (compared to $120). For a family of four, pricing is exactly the same as T-Mobile: $160.
In a press release, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure was all business when explaining the plans. "There can be a lot of frustration and confusion around wireless offers, with too much focus on gigabytes and extra charges. Our answer is the simplicity of Unlimited Freedom,” said Claure. “Now customers can watch their favorite movies and videos and stream an unlimited playlist at an amazing price.”
However, Claure pulled out the claws when talking about T-Mobile ONE and Legere in an interview with CNBC. “We started testing this a week ago. We were going to start tomorrow,” said Claure. “What John did, unfortunately, is he basically copied our rate plans and called for an emergency press release and he's not even ready to launch until September 6.”
Sounding more and more like John Legere every day, Claure added, "Sorry, to me, that's a con artist.”
It shouldn’t be too surprising to see that there’s no love lost between Claure and Legere, as the two have been battling it out for third place in the U.S. wireless market.