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T-Mobile To Launch Its Own Branded Budget Smartphone (cnet.com) 16

In a throwback to a time when carriers differentiated themselves by branding and selling exclusive phones, T-Mobile announced Wednesday that it's launching its very own budget Android smartphone called the Revvl. CNET reports: The Revvl, which runs on Android Nougat, offers pretty basic specs: a 5.5 inch HD display, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. But it also throws in a fingerprint sensor and will cost T-Mobile customers just $5 a month with no down payment through the company's Jump! upgrade program. It goes on sale Thursday. In a blog post, T-Mobile COO Mike Sievert said the company is catering to those who want the latest smartphone technology but can't afford to pay for high-end devices.

T-Mobile To Launch Its Own Branded Budget Smartphone

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  • by dugancent ( 2616577 ) on Wednesday August 09, 2017 @07:24PM (#54979725)

    Never buy a phone a Carriers name printed on it, or has an OS customized with their bloatware and branding.

    • Then you're accepting a substandard service.

      A carrier's handset is optimized for their network. In T-Mobile's case that be VoLTE on 700MHz. Outside of iPhone or Nexus/Pixel devices you're very unlikely to get that extended network.

      A carrier's features. For T-Mobile that'd be Wifi Calling: SMS & HD voice calls using a VPN over Wifi. Also taking advantage of RCS for native video calling and advanced SMS.

      Carrier support. Got a problem? Carriers know everything about their own handsets, not so much ab

    • I understand why you would say that... but, given the low cost for this device, people aren't going to be particularly locked-in.

      I am curious, though: I've had an AT&T Android phone, which did come with a fair bit of bloatware that I moved as out-of-the-way as I could. I also have purchased an iPhone from T-Mobile, but the only non-standard addition was the inoffensive T-Mobile app. Do they load a bunch of crapware on their Android devices?

  • Carriers have been doing this for years, at least where I live, (not US).
    They seem to be low-end Android, locked to the one network, but cheap as chips, and available to buy outright.
    I am guessing there is quite a big market for such devices, here's an example. [pbtech.co.nz]
  • This is potentially a good/great phone to recommend to price-sensitive users but will depend on (1) can be unlocked from T-Mobile, and (2) based on such thin margins what's the firmware update situation going to be?

  • by rklrkl ( 554527 ) on Thursday August 10, 2017 @02:44AM (#54981463) Homepage

    It might be news in the US, but Vodafone in the UK have done this for years. They have a "Smart" range - here's [vodafone.co.uk] one of the cheapest at 49 pounds PAYG (and a 10 pounds top-up I believe).

  • This phone is not cheaper nor better than existing similar options. For $5 / month / 24 months, the cost is $120, and for $120, you could buy a Moto E, and get basically the same 2 GB + crap camera = fingerprint reader spec phone. $120 for a budget phone is pretty standard, and tmobile already has a ton of phones with their logo printed right on it. I don't see why this particular deal is newsworthy.
    • Also, no SD card? 32GB will be filled up in no time. With Nougat and an SD card slot, one could at least have put in a 128GB card and made that primary storage.

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