Bill increase after Free iPhone 7 Promotion?


    Has anyone experienced a bill increase after doing the free iPhone 7 pre-order promotion? I got the iPhone7 Plus 128gb and made the down payment on it, and from what I understood about the promotion, the monthly cost of the phone would be covered by credits over a 24 month period. I've spoken to about 7 reps about this, all of whom I got conflicting information from, but the most recent rep I spoke to told me the $10 increase I'm seeing on my bill is normal. I was told that only the base iPhone 7 32gb was truly free, and everything beyond that would not be completely covered by the monthly credits from T-Mobile. Looking back on the wording of the promotion, I'd say it's pretty deceiving at best since I thought my bill would remain unchanged once the credits started kicking in:


    Get your new iPhone 7 on us!  Starting September 9 at 12:01am PT, all new and current T-Mobile customers can pre-order a new iPhone 7 32GB and get it on us when you trade in your iPhone 6 or newer model (any memory variant).  Want a different model or more memory?  Just pay a little more upfront – it’s only $120 to upgrade to iPhone 7 Plus 32GB, and each memory increase is an additional $100.


    The mechanics are simple – when you trade in your current iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s or 6s Plus, you’ll see a monthly credit on your T-Mobile bill. After 24 months, you’ll have paid nothing and will owe nothing on your iPhone 7 32GB. To be eligible for this promotion, you’ll need to own your trade in device outright – in other words, you can’t still be making payments on it – and it needs to turn on, not have water damage, and the screen can’t be shattered.

      All replies

      • tmo_amanda

        Good morning, pogostick!


        Hmmm. I'm sorry that there seems to be a gray line for this promo. Let me see if I'm able to get this cleared up from you. I don't have any type of access to your account so I'll have to ask you a few questions to make sure I have the full picture.


        -What type of phone did you trade-in?

        -Was the trade-in fully paid off?

        -When did you receive your iPhone 7 Plus?


        Once I have these questions answered, I should be able to provide you a solid answer.

          • pogostick

            Traded in the iPhone 6 64gb, it was fully paid off, and I received my 7 Plus in October.

              • tmo_amanda

                Thanks so much for getting back to me, pogostick. Sorry, I have one last question for you: When you traded in your iPhone 6 did you do a deferred trade-in (mailed it back) or an instant trade-in (traded it in at the store at the time of purchase)? The method of trade-in may impact how your credits are applied which is why I need this last piece of info.

                  • pogostick

                    I did a deferred trade-in.

                      • tmo_marissa

                        Hey pogostick - thank you for hanging in there - the holidays have had us in and out but we want to make sure we answer your question!  With a deferred trade-in, what we'd expect to see on your bills are one lump sum credit for the standard trade-in value of your older iPhone, and then monthly credits that make up the difference between that lump sum and the total cost of a 32GB iPhone 7.  Just an example (not using actual figures) - if the new phone cost $600, it would be set up on a 24 month Equipment Installment Plan for monthly payments of $25 each.  If the phone you were trading in was worth $200, you'd get one lump sum bill credit of $200, and then we'd add $400 of promotional trade-in value to be split over 24 months - so you'd see monthly credits of $16.66 each for two years.  Although the net cost of the phone is still free, there is still a monthly bill increase in this scenario.  I agree that the promotion verbiage could call this out more directly, and that's great feedback.  I'm sorry that you were caught by surprise with a bill increase.

                        Although it's not the most user-intuitive option, one suggestion that some users have found helpful is to simply ignore the initial lump credit, and continue making your monthly payments for everything except that difference in the EIP/monthly promo credit.  The lump credit will remain on your account and reduce slightly each month.  I totally get it if this isn't an option/this suggestion's coming too late - but I at least want to throw it out there in case any other users might have questions!


                        - Marissa