What You Need to Know
Metro by T-Mobile has gained a reputation as the prepaid provider for those that love to stream. From plans with unmetered music streaming to unlimited prepaid plans, they offer some of the largest data allowances of all US prepaid providers.
The carrier was originally known as MetroPCS after a merger with T-Mobile in 2012. On September 24, 2018, T-Mobile announced they would relaunch the service with the name Metro by T-Mobile.
All plans through Metro by T-Mobile are contract-free and prepaid. Plans range between $30 and $60 per month before add-ons. They also offer a range of multi-line plans with discounts based on the number of lines you need.
If you need a phone, their options range from entry level options to the latest flagships. However, you won’t find the device financing available from bigger carriers. If you already have an unlocked phone you love, their SIMs make switching providers simple.
- Affordable pricing
- Unlimited prepaid data plans
- Data-free streaming with popular music services on most plans
- No credit checks
- No early termination fees
- Bring your own device plans available
- Multi-line discounts
- Data speeds are throttled after thresholds are reached
- Video quality on unlimited streaming is reduced by default
- Limited international roaming support
- Unlimited Data: Enjoy up to 28GB of 4G LTE data and throttled speeds afterward during periods of network congestion. For $10 more per month, you can add 8GB of tethering data as well.
- Unlimited Music Streaming: Enjoy your favorite streaming music, including Spotfiy, iHeart Radio, Slacker and more than 30 other services, without worrying about data limits.
- Data Maximizer: Enabling this feature reduces the quality of streaming video and audio to help you make the most of your data allotment.
- Family Plans: For each line you add to your plan, you’ll enjoy a $5 discount off your monthly bill.
Awards and Recognitions
- Ranked #2 in the Non-Contract category of J.D. Power's "U.S. Wireless Customer Care Study Vol. 1 (2017)".
- A B+ rating with the Better Business Bureau with 2,925 complaints closed in the last 3 years.
How's the Network Coverage and Speed?
Metro by T-Mobile uses the same network as their parent company, T-Mobile. They claim their 4G LTE network covers 98% of Americans.
You can check coverage and network types in your area at the Coverage Map page.
T-mobile took 15 of the 36 awards in PC Magazine's 2018 "Fastest Mobile Networks" study based on their 4G transfer speeds and coverage.
This earned them second place in the study.
T-Mobile's network also ranked first in Ookla's "2018 United States Speedtest Market Report" with a SpeedScore of 27.86 -- up from 23.17 in 2017.
In OpenSignal's July 2018 "State of Mobile Networks: USA" report, T-mobile ranked #1 in both 4G uploads and downloads as well as 3G downloads. Download speeds averaged 23Mbps and 3.75Mbps over 4G and 3G. Uploads on the 4G network averaged just shy of 8Mbps.
Do They Charge Roaming Fees?
You won’t need to worry about roaming within the United States.
If you’re traveling, Metro by T-Mobile’ TravelTalk coverage areas offer low-cost roaming. However, roaming is limited. After activating TravelTalk, texting is free and voice calls are $0.19 per minute.
You can also add the Mexico or Canada Unlimited add-ons to your plan to use your existing minutes, data and texts instead of per-minute rates for $5 per month.
The World Calling add-on further expands options, allowing you to use up to 200 minutes and 200MB of data in more than 20 countries.
For more information, consult their Unlimited International Long Distance Terms and Conditions.
Do They Charge Long Distance Fees?
For all plans, domestic calls within the US, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are always included with your monthly voice allotment.
If you plan to call abroad, you can use the Mexico ar Canada Unlimited add-ons mentioned above or their $10 World Calling add-on. This add-on adds unlimited calls to landlines in more than 75 countries and 200 minutes to mobiles in 40 countries.
You can find more about specific calling rates and options on their Add-Ons page.
Does Metro by T-Mobile Offer Wi-Fi Calling?
Yes. If you have a supporting phone, they allow calling over Wi-Fi at no additional charge. They do not currently offer an app for Wi-Fi calling on non-supported phones.
To use Wi-Fi calling, you must call customer service to set an e911 address on your account.
How About Voice over LTE (VoLTE)?
Yes. In fact, Metro by T-Mobile was one of the first carriers to offer VoLTE service in the U.S. You'll need a supported device to use the feature.
While they don't offer exact coverage areas on their map. If you're near a 4G LTE coverage area, you might have VoLTE as well.
Calling customer service is the best way to check availability.
Can I Tether My Phone?
Yes! You can tethering using your monthly data allotment. For unlimited plans, you’ll find speeds reduced unless you add the $10 per month mobile hotspot add-on.
Remember to monitor usage closely while tethering as many laptops, PCs and gaming consoles use significantly more data that your mobile device.
Can I Rollover Unused Data?
Metro by T-Mobile does not support data rollover at this time.
What Add-ons or Bundles are Available?
Outside of calling add-ons, Metro by T-Mobile offer a few options to help adjust your plan to your needs.
Popular options include:
- Napster Unlimited Music: Download or stream your favorite tracks to your phone for $10 per month.
- Premium Handset Protection Program: Enjoy virus protection and insurance coverage against accidental damage, theft or device loss for $6 per month.
- Value Bundle: Add Name ID, international texting, voicemail transcription, call forwarding and unlimited 411 use for $5 per month.
For other add-on options, consult their Add-On page.
Can I Bring My Own Device?
Yes! You can bring your own unlocked device to Metro by T-Mobile. Their universal SIM kits cost $10.
To check phone compatibility, consult their Bring Your Own Phone page.
Do They Require a Credit Check?
No! As a prepaid service provider, Metro by T-Mobile does not require a credit check to start service.
What About Activation and SIM Fees?
Metro by T-Mobile charges $15 to activate a new line of service.
If you bring your own phone or tablet, you'll also need a Metro by T-Mobile SIM.
SIM kits are available for $10 through their online store.
NOTE: Fees often differ between retail stores and websites. Be sure to check both before signing up or adding a line to your account to maximize savings.
Do They Charge an Early Termination Fee?
No! Since there’s no contracts, there’s no worry about early termination fees.
Can I Port My Number To or From Metro by T-Mobile?
Yes! Metro by T-Mobile follows all Local Number Portability requirements allowing you to bring your existing landline or mobile phone number to your new account.
General requirements include:
- The account with which the number is associated must be active and in good standing.
- The number must be in an area in which Local Number Portability regulations are in effect.
They recommend calling customer care or visiting a retail location to start the process. This ensures a smooth transition between providers.
Will They Unlock My Phone?
Provided you meet unlocking requirements, they will unlock up to 2 locked phones for free in a 12-month period.
Requirements for postpaid phones include:
- The phone must be locked to the Metro by T-Mobile network
- The phone must not be reported lost, stolen or blocked.
- The account with which the phone is associated must be active and in good standing.
- The phone must be on active with Metro by T-Mobile for at least 90 days.
For additional information on the unlocking process, see their Phone Unlock Policy.
For additional questions about pricing, features and coverage, be sure to check our Metro by T-Mobile Q&A Forum. It’s filled with questions and answers from people like you looking to get the most out of their mobile service!
If you spot any errors or missing information, please let us know! It's appreciated and will help make this page better for everyone.
Voice network: CDMA, LTE
Data network: 1xRTT, EV-DO, LTE
MetroPCS Wireless, Inc. PO Box 601119 Dallas, TX 75360
888-863-8768 (or *611 from your cell)
Official Website, Facebook, Twitter, Coverage Maps, Manage Your Account
Review Sources and Citations
The Wirecutter, Tom's Guide, Top Ten Reviews, WhistleOut, MoneySavingPro, BestPhonePlans
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