T-Mobile has gone with a 3-plan solution for postpaid customers for years now (excluding discount rate plans). Those plans are currently the cheaper Essentials plan, the standard Magenta plan, and the premium Magenta MAX plan. Now it appears they’re adding a fourth plan to the lineup called “Base Essentials”, and it’s kind of a weird one.
The news was first mentioned on the r/tmobile subreddit and has been confirmed via a document shared with us here at The T-Mo Report, embedded below.
The new plan will cost $45 for single lines ($15 cheaper than standard Essentials), $80 for 2 lines, and $100 for 3 lines. Not shown above is an option of 4 lines for $120. There are quite a few catches though.
First, the plan is ineligible for most phone and service promotions. This is a pretty big caveat, as many people only finance devices if there’s some sort of promotion included. The Base Essentials plan will still offer device financing however.
The next issue is one of cost. The only customers that might save money with this new plan are people who just want a single line and use less than 20 GB of data, or perhaps customers who don’t like the idea of AutoPay discounts. The problem is, for just $5 more per month, single line customers can get unlimited data on a T-Mobile prepaid plan. Unless you really want phone financing (with no promotions), that seems like the best option.
Once you hit 2 lines, you might as well splurge and go for the standard Essentials plan for $10 more (or, again, prepaid). At 3 lines, you’re actually losing $10 per month, due to the third line free promotion that standard Essentials has. Then at 4 lines you’re paying the same as standard Essentials but for one less line, which doesn’t make much sense.
T-Mobile labels all of their “third line free” promotions as a “limited time offer”, so if it does end there may be a little it of savings to be had on Base Essentials. However, that promotion has been around for quite a while and is not likely to end any time soon. The thing is, even if the third line free promotion on standard Essentials ends, you’d still only save $5 by having 3 lines on the Base Essentials plan.
Finally, as mentioned above, the new plan only comes with 20 GB of high-speed data. After that limit has been reached, speeds drop to a maximum of 1.5 Mbps. The standard Essentials plan includes 50 GB, and the $50 single-line plan on T-Mobile prepaid is unlimited.
The rest of the Base Essentials plan matches standard Essentials. That includes unlimited talk, text, and 2G data in Canada and Mexico, unlimited 3G hotspot data (at 600 kbps), and one year of Paramount+ on the house. The plan is also able to use the T-Mobile Tuesdays app and Scam Shield.
Clearly, the new Base Essentials plan is a bit of an odd one. If, however, you’re in that small subset of customers that wants a single line or two lines, doesn’t care about phone promotions, and really wants to finance a device through T-Mobile, this might be the plan for you.