If you followed along with T-Mobile’s press event last week, you probably heard about the new UnCarrier 5.0 “Test Drive” initiative, and then another “UnCarrier 6.0” announcement, which makes a few changes to music on T-Mobile’s network. One of the changes was “unRadio,” which T-Mobile partnered with Rhapsody to launch. The carrier’s CEO John Legere suggested the option is available to all of T-Mobile’s unlimited customers for free. It’s really only available to those on newer plans.
Our editor-in-chief Sean Aune, a relatively new T-Mobile customer, tried to give unRadio a whirl recently, but found that even though he’s on an Unlimited 4G plan (see above). His plan, an older Simple Choice plan that allowed you to add Unlimited Nationwide 4G for $20 (a total of $70 per month including the Unlimited Talk & Text), doesn’t actually qualify for unRadio.
Instead, you need the most recent Unlimited 4G LTE option, which costs $80 per month. In other words, not all unlimited plans are treated equally, and you’ll need to cough up an additional $10 per month for a newer unlimited plan for free unRadio. At least that expense also comes with 5GB of hotspot data, versus 3GB on the grandfathered plan.
We reached out to T-Mobile for comment, and it appears that T-Mobile tried to explain this in its press release by saying that unRadio is available to customers on “its newest unlimited 4G LTE data service” (emphasis ours). Apparently Sean’s account isn’t new enough and is already considered grandfathered, even though he signed up after UnCarrier 3.0, when T-Mobile launched free international roaming, less than a year ago.
We aren’t the only ones confused by this, which is why we decided to alert you. On a CNET article covering the unRadio news, at least one commenter said: “TMobile rep told me tonight, that you need unlimited 4G and hotspot of 4G – 11GB running in 4G for Rhapsody unRadio.”
Sure, you can still pay $4 per month for the service, bringing your cost up slightly, and that’s still cheaper than upgrading to the full Unlimited Nationwide 4G + 5GB for an additional $10 per month, but we think T-Mobile could have been a lot clearer with its customers, especially if it’s already confusing some of them.