Could the Sprint-T-Mobile merger mean higher bills for Boost or MetroPCS customers?, says USA TODAY

From USA TODAY:

If the government approves Sprint and T-Mobile’s bid to merge, customers of lower cost pre-paid plans — say from Boost and MetroPCS — could see some changes.

Both Sprint and T-Mobile sell prepaid services at lower costs and under different brand names: Sprint has Boost and Virgin Mobile USA, while T-Mobile offers MetroPCS. The two also wholesale their networks to such third-party resellers as Consumer Cellular, Republic Wireless and Ting; AT&T and in particular, Verizon, are less open to the resellers.

These prepaid and resold services have allowed many customers to lower their bills by buying only the level of data they need; some also rank higher in customer-satisfaction surveys than these carriers’ own subscription services.

Weaving together Sprint and T-Mobile’s networks could upgrade those services, but the combined company could also choose to consolidate its own prepaid brands. Meanwhile, resellers—in trade jargon, MVNOs, short for “mobile virtual network operators”—that now offer service from both firms would find themselves tied to one.

Continue reading Could the Sprint-T-Mobile merger mean higher bills for Boost or MetroPCS customers? on USA TODAY

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