T-Mobile’s Misleading Zero Down Promotion To Begin September 21

T-Mobile is gearing up for its “Magenta Deal Days” Zero Down promotion in hopes of suckering a few chaps into signing a 2-year contract and paying full retail for a phone. I’ve always detested the way T-Mobile tries to mislead consumers with these deals. The lure is “zero down payment,” but the truth is — there is a down payment. Sure, you’ll get that money back in the form of a rebate card, but that’s not the point. It’s not “zero down,” it’s $149.99 down with a $150 rebate card. It’s more like a deposit than anything.

So basically, the deal is: anyone looking to purchase a device from September 21 through September 30, can walk into a T-Mobile store, put down the required amount, send in a mail-in rebate and get back their down payment in the form of a debit card a few weeks later. So why even bother taking the down payment in the first place? Simple:

  • Perhaps you’ll forget to mail in your form by the required date and then they get to keep your money
  • Perhaps you’ll forget to dot all your i’s and cross all your t’s on the rebate submission form and invalidate your rebate — again, letting them keep your money.
  • Perhaps you’ll receive your rebate card only to lose it, and once again, allow them to keep your money.

There are so many ways for you to lose your money it’s not even funny. Don’t believe me, just read the T-Mobile General Rebate Card Terms & Conditions. That my friends, is how the rebate scheme works. So if you do decide to go for this “Magenta Deal Days” Zero Down promotion, just make sure you follow instructions precisely or you may just be out some serious cash.

Let’s take a look at how the promo will work for the Samsung Galaxy S III:

  1. Walk into a T-Mobile Store
  2. Pay $149.99 and sign a two-year agreement on a qualifying Unlimited ValueT and Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plans
  3. Fill out and send in your mail-in rebate
  4. Receive $150 rebate card some weeks later
  5. Minus the $150 from the full retail price of the Galaxy S III ($549.99) and pay the remainder of the balance in 20 monthly installments of $20 each.

What the Samsung Galaxy S III ends up costing you is $400. Not such a great deal considering you can grab the Verizon Samsung Galaxy S III for $149.99 with a two-year contract from Amazon Wireless and never pay a cent for the phone after that (just the plan). Or how about $99.99 for the Sprint Galaxy S III with a two-year contract from Amazon Wireless?

Yea, T-Mobile has its head up its you know what.

Now that you have the majority of the information, I’ll leave the decision up to you. Personally, I’d stay as far away from T-Mobile’s deals as possible.

For the full details on Magenta’s latest promotion, I suggest carefully reading the full press release below.

T-Mobile Helps Customers Fall Into Savings

From Sept. 21–30, get any device, including the Samsung Galaxy S® III, for $0.00 down

BELLEVUE, Wash. — Sept. 18, 2012 — Prices are falling at T-Mobile® this September during the “Magenta Deal Days” Zero Down promotion, making staying in touch more affordable than ever. Starting Sept. 21, customers can purchase any device, including the Samsung Galaxy S® III, for $0.00 down payment on qualifying Unlimited ValueTM and Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plans after mail-in rebate card.

“Our customers continue to appreciate our ‘Magenta Deal Days’ offerings because they showcase our commitment to giving all our customers the best 4G experiences,” said Andrew Sherrard, senior vice president of marketing, T-Mobile USA. “With back to school in full swing, we’re glad to offer another great deal to keep families in touch.”

The Samsung Galaxy S III is one of T-Mobile’s fastest 4G (HSPA+ 42 technology) smartphones. With an intuitive design, the Galaxy S III enables customers to effortlessly share photos, videos and more to a compatible TV or other Galaxy S III devices. Featuring a beautiful 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED™ screen, the Galaxy S III packs a powerful entertainment experience, which allows customers to watch HD movies and TV shows, download apps, and securely browse the Web.

New customers will be eligible for this deal when they sign a two-year agreement on any qualifying Unlimited Value and Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plan (Unlimited, 5GB or 10GB). Existing customers also can take advantage of this offer.1

Data-hungry smartphone customers can choose the ultimate worry-free experience with T-Mobile’s new Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plan, featuring no data caps, no speed limits and no overages, as well as fast, dependable nationwide 4G coverage. For more details about T-Mobile’s Unlimited Nationwide 4G Data plan, visit http://www.T-Mobile.com/unlimited-data-plan.

The following is a sample of device pricing and EIP payments included in the “Magenta Deal Days” offer with a qualifying Unlimited Value plan:

The “Magenta Deal Days” promotion will be available at participating T-Mobile retail stores nationwide. For more information about T-Mobile’s “Magenta Deal Days” promotion and details about qualifying plans and services, visit http://bit.ly/NldCS8.

1 Standard migration fees will apply for existing Classic customers who switch to a Value plan and have less than 18 months of contract tenure.
2 Equipment installment plans: On approved credit and 0 percent APR. Down payment and unfinanced portion required at purchase. Remaining balance paid in 20 monthly installments.