T-Mobile is touting up to $1000 off the new iPhone 15 for customers who switch and trade-in an eligible device in the US. But the carrier’s flashy deal has some major caveats.
The $1000 rebate is split into two parts – an instant $640 credit from Apple at purchase, then $360 in bill credits from T-Mobile over 24 months.
To get the max discount, you must join T-Mobile’s pricy Magenta Max plan, which starts at $85/month for one line. You can’t buy the iPhone outright either – T-Mobile requires financing through them.
So while advertised as “free,” the iPhone 15 still costs $15/month on your T-Mobile bill. And you need to remain on an expensive service plan you may not need.
Some see the deal as deceptive. T-Mobile wants customers on premium plans and financing phones through the carrier. Offering a “free” iPhone 15 is the carrot to shift more costs to consumers long-term.
Savvy customers could buy the phone outright from Apple to keep their plan flexibility. You miss out on the extra $360 in bill credits but aren’t locked-in or paying unnecessary monthly fees.
If you do take T-Mobile’s offer, paying off the iPhone once the credits start can let you keep getting the discount without device payments. But you need to act quick before the 24-month credit period ends.
The bottom line – T-Mobile’s tempting iPhone 15 deal has many strings attached. Customers should understand the total long-term costs before jumping to get a new “free” phone. As always, if something seems too good to be true, make sure to read the fine print.