News T-Mobile Update on COVID-19 Response

UPDATE: May 18, 2020


T-Mobile announced today it has extended agreements with multiple spectrum holders to continue utilization of their 600MHz spectrum during the COVID-19 pandemic. Each of the companies has agreed to extend the arrangements through at least June 30.

T-Mobile thanks the FCC, ATN International, Bluewater, Carolina West Wireless, Channel 51, Comcast, DISH, Grain Management affiliate NewLevel LLC, LB Holdings, Omega Wireless LLC, Viaero Wireless and others for their support. 

 
UPDATE: May 7, 2020
 

Customer support update
Keeping customers connected continues to be one of our highest priorities during the pandemic and we remain committed to ensuring all current T-Mobile customers on plans that currently have data are provided with the connectivity they need to learn and work.

The vast majority of customers on T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile plans continue to have unlimited talk, text and data, and our T-Mobile Home Internet customers already have unlimited plans with no data caps or surcharges.

In addition to extending our commitment to the FCC pledge through June 30, we have several temporary measures to further support our customers, including those on plans without unlimited data:

  • Providing unlimited high-speed smartphone data to current customers who have legacy plans without unlimited high-speed data (excluding roaming) through June 30, 2020;
  • Giving T-Mobile postpaid and Metro by T-Mobile customers on smartphone plans with mobile hotspot data the ability to add 10GB of Smartphone Mobile HotSpot each month for the next two months (20GB total) through June 30, 2020 (excluding T-Mobile Connect);
  • Working with our Lifeline partners to provide customers up to 5GB per month of extra free data through June 30, 2020;
  • Increasing the data allowance, at no extra charge, to schools and students using our EmpowerED digital learning program to ensure each participant has access to at least 20GB of data per month through June 30, 2020; and
  • Providing free international calling to landlines (and in many cases mobile numbers) to countries that were significantly impacted by COVID-19 through May 13, 2020. 
 
 
UPDATE: April 30, 2020
 

T-Mobile Donates Phone Chargers to Hospitals Across the Country
During these unprecedented times, we want to make sure everyone stays connected, especially COVID-19 patients in isolation for treatment. T-Mobile is teaming up with iHeartMedia and other partners to donate nearly 40,000 phone chargers to hospitals nationwide so that isolated patients can stay connected to loved ones at a time when they need it the most. The Un-carrier has already supplied 20,000 chargers to hospitals in Seattle, New York City, Los Angeles, New Orleans and San Diego, and will continue to fulfill requests from hospitals nationwide. Check out the press release here.

 
UPDATE: April 28, 2020
 

In an email to employees, CEO Mike Sievert shared updates about T-Mobile’s continued efforts to prioritize the safety of employees and customers to help flatten the curve, while continuing to ensure we provide the critical connectivity people need. 

He shared that employees across the company who are able to work from home, including those in Care, Technology, T-Mobile for Business and other T-Mobile office functions, will continue to do so likely through May but the management team will continue to stay close to federal and state guidelines and actively engage with experts and government officials to determine next steps. Those who are in roles that require them to be in public-facing environments are supported by social distancing guidelines and being provided personal protective equipment. He also provided updates on how our Care and Retail teams continue to support customers: 

Care:

  • Over 92% of our Care employees are now taking calls from customers in a work from home environment, handling more than 4.5M customer contacts in over the last month alone.
  • For those small number of employees who remain in our call centers, we are continuing to reinforce social distancing measures and cleaning and safety procedures.


Retail

  • We are implementing in-store and curbside pickup for customers to help support social distancing guidelines.
  • We’ve transitioned over 2,200 retail employees to become virtual Retail-Mobile Experts taking live chats with customers to connect them to our stores for in-store and curbside pickup.
  • We continue to practice social distancing and enhanced sanitization procedures in our open stores for our teams and customers.

 

UPDATE: April 27, 2020
 

Extending support of the FCC Pledge
T-Mobile is extending our commitment to the FCC pledge through June 30, continuing to offer support for postpaid wireless, residential and small business customers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers who have already talked to us and made arrangements for their account can contact us directly after May 13 to get an extension through June 30. We will have more details available online later this week.

 
UPDATE: April 17, 2020
 

Network and Connectivity Update 
T-Mobile President of Technology Neville Ray shared another video update on network usage trends, including more insights since the beginning of March. The T-Mobile and Sprint networks continue to hold up well, with data usage leveling off and holding steady after previous weeks of significant increase. 

We’re seeing an immediate benefit from efforts to help students stay connected during this challenging time. In New York City, where we worked with the school district to provide LTE connectivity on tablets for students in need, online educational tool usage has shot up 268%.

Additional stats Neville shared include:

  • Tethering is up 57% for T-Mobile and 70% for Sprint
  • Educational apps are up 148% nationally
  • Food delivery apps, gaming, video streaming, messaging and call times all remain at increased levels of 30% to more than doubled


UPDATE: April 15, 2020

 

Supporting Stanford Medicine to Get the Word Out About COVID-19 Survey
As T-Mobile continues to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic situation and efforts to stop the spread of the virus, we want to do our part and play a role in finding the solution for containing the virus.

We are helping Stanford Medicine to get the word out about their recently released National Daily Health Survey For Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) study with a goal to mobilize survey responses from people across the country so researchers can better track and understand the spread of COVID-19.

Data gathered in this important survey will be used to analyze and predict which geographical areas will be most impacted by COVID-19 in order to inform local and national responses. This includes redirecting medical resources or improving policies and public guidance.

The survey is just 15 easy questions and takes one to two minutes to complete. Participants are then asked to resubmit each day – just three additional questions and a matter of seconds.

If you’d like to know more about this study, visit Stanford Medicine’s National Daily Health Survey webpage.


UPDATE: April 9, 2020
 

Network and Connectivity Update 
We are continuing to monitor network usage. Even as we are seeing remarkable spikes in traffic across the country as people rely on wireless connectivity while staying home, both our T-Mobile and Sprint networks are performing incredibly well. President of Technology Neville Ray shared a video update on the trends we’ve seen over the last month:

  • Traffic on educational apps is now up 167%
  • Number of people using Collaboration tools is up 137% - that’s more than double!
  • MMS Messaging is up 54% for T-Mobile and 69% for Sprint
  • Video streaming for Sprint users increased 32%
  • Sprint users are gaming 85% more

Neville also announced that additional spectrum holders – Carolina West and Viaero – are providing their 600 MHz to help us boost capacity even more during this challenging time.

 
UPDATE: April 6, 2020


Network and Connectivity Update

T-Mobile continues to see shifts in the way people are using the network to keep working, learning and connecting with others during this challenging time. President of Technology Neville Ray shared a video update on some of the interesting trends we’ve been tracking over the last month, including:

  • Mobile hotspot usage is up 60%
  • Use of Collaboration tools, like Skype, Slack and Webex, is up 87%
  • Use of Education tools, like Google Classroom and Khan Academy, increased 135%
  • Video game traffic increased 85%
  • Traffic on food delivery apps is up 23%
 
 
UPDATE: March 31, 2020 


Stores and Customer Care Support
T-Mobile continues to implement options to ensure we are available to serve our customers during this time, while also adhering to guidelines that support the safety of our employees and customers. The following additional services will now be available to T-Mobile customers:

  • Retail store hours: Starting April 1st, all T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile stores that have remained open will operate on an updated schedule of 11 am to 6 pm, Monday to Saturday, and 12 pm to 6 pm on Sunday. All our stores will be closed on Easter Sunday.
  • Virtual Retail: Beginning on April 3rd, customers will be able to chat with a retail Mobile Expert through the T-Mobile website, through Apple Business Chat, or through Facebook Messenger to activate a new device or add lines to their accounts. Products will arrive via free two-day shipping (through 5/13). Beginning April 13th, our retail Mobile Experts will also be supporting payment questions, inquiries about our products and services, add-a-lines, upgrades, or learn more about T-Mobile rate plans.
  • Mobile and Curbside Fulfilment: Beginning now in select markets, and nationally in the second half of April, customers can make appointments through the store locator page on T-Mobile.com for curbside or mobile fulfilment (look for “Appointments Available”). By simply checking in online, chatting live with an expert, and routing to the customer’s nearest T-Mobile store, our Mobile Expert team will be able to assist with service payments, activations, add-a-lines, upgrades, or many other essential needs. 
  • Retail store availability: For those customers needing in-person support and essential services from one of our trusted Mobile Experts, approximately half of our stores will be open in April, covering many of our customers within a 20-minute drive time. Visit our T-Mobile store locator page for store status and hours and to schedule appointments where available.
  • Visit our Metro store locator page for store status and hours.
  • Care Facilities: In our Care facilities, we continue to transition to a remote work force. Now more than 6,700 of our internal care and over 8,000 of our Global Care experts have transitioned to a work from home environment. We anticipate transitioning all 17 of our internal sites to a similar work from home experience by the end of the week so we can continue to deliver on our promise to keep customers connected to each other and the world. 
 
 
UPDATE: March 31, 2020


#GiveThanksNotPranks
T-Mobile continues to give back to communities that we serve during this critical time. As an alternative to its traditional annual April Fool’s Day prank, T-Mobile is asking everyone to #GiveThanksNotPranks starting April 1st and will donate up to $500,000 to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America COVID-19 Relief Fund, which provides childcare support and more to first responders and healthcare workers, along with meals to families in need. There are two ways for everyone to participate:

  • Through April 7th, T-Mobile will donate $1 for every post on Twitter using #GiveThanksNotPranks and tagging @TMobile, up to $200,000.
  • Throughout April, text THANKS to 50555 to donate $5 and T-Mobile will match donations, up to $300,000. Anyone can text to participate, up to 16 times per line—including non-T-Mobile customers—and the charge will be reflected on their next monthly bill.

 

UPDATE: March 27, 2020
 
How to Protect Yourself and Loved Ones from COVID-19 Phone Scams

As more and more Americans brace for the possible health and economic fallouts from the current COVID-19 outbreak, scammers are proving themselves to be another rising threat, harnessing the fear and uncertainty many of us feel day to day on a growing basis. Government agencies such as the FBI, FTC and CDC have reported a rise in pandemic-related scam calls, from those selling non-existent COVID-19 home-testing kits to fraudulent “Coronavirus” cleaning services.

T-Mobile offers free Scam Identification and Scam Block tools to all T-Mobile postpaid and Metro by T-Mobile customers regardless of device and with no app required:

  • Scam ID: Customers are automatically alerted when an incoming call has been identified by T-Mobile’s network as a likely scam. Scam ID is free and on by default.
  • Scam Block: T-Mobile will stop calls identified as “Scam Likely” before they ever reach a customer’s phones. Customers can enable Scam Block in their T-Mobile account or by dialing #662# from their T-Mobile phone.
  • Caller Verified: T-Mobile has been leading the industry on implementing the FCC recommended STIR/SHAKEN standards. Today, T-Mobile Customers with a Caller Verified-enabled device and the latest software update will see “Caller Verified” on the incoming call screen when T-Mobile has verified that the call is authentic and not intercepted by scammers/spammers.

Here you’ll find some additional steps you can take to help you better protect yourself, and your phone.

 

UPDATE: March 24, 2020


Keeping Customers Connected 24/7

As people practice social distancing and adjust to working and learning from home, T-Mobile has seen shifts in the way they’re using the network. While overall data traffic is higher, the overall contribution to total network loading has been relatively minor. President of Technology Neville Ray shared a few of the trends we’ve tracked over the last two weeks in his blog here.

 
UPDATE: March 23, 2020


T-Mobile Connect
In response to COVID-19, T-Mobile introduced T-Mobile Connect, its lowest prices smartphone plan ever, and added lower-cost options for Metro by T-Mobile to help ensure everyone has an affordable option to get and stay connected during these challenging times.

UPDATE: March 16, 2020


Stores and Care Facilities
T-Mobile takes our designation by the government as a critical communications infrastructure provider seriously and continues to evaluate the appropriate steps we need to take as a business to align guidelines from State, Local and Federal Government agencies with what’s best for our customers and our employees.

President and COO Mike Sievert emailed employees regarding new actions the company is taking starting March 17th to further support social distancing recommendations, limit gatherings of people and ensure the well-being of its customers and employees in its retail stores and Care facilities.

  • T-Mobile will temporarily close about 80% of its’ company-owned retail stores until at least March 31st
  • The stores that remain open, which are distributed across the country, will operate on reduced schedules and only stay open for eight hours each day – from 10 am to 6 pm local time for most stores
  • In Care facilities (where the public does not access), T-Mobile is taking steps to reduce staffing levels and increasing the distance between workstations to create additional personal space
  • At stores and in Care facilities, hygiene and sanitization efforts will remain a priority

    Read the full email here.

    Visit our T-Mobile store locator page for store status and hours.
    Visit our Metro store locator page for store status and hours.

 

UPDATE: March 16, 2020
 

T-Mobile has been mobilizing response and relief efforts in every area of our business to ensure that we continue to provide the connectivity that is crucial during these challenging and unique times. We also take our responsibility to give back seriously, particularly in times of need. Today, T-Mobile announced plans to extend that support to the communities we serve that have seen the impacts of COVID-19.

  • T-Mobile is giving up to $500,000 to Feeding America through T-Mobile Tuesdays, a program that thanks customers with exclusive offers every Tuesday. With the help of customers through the T-Mobile Tuesdays app on March 17, the company will give $1 per click on the Feeding America card with a minimum of $300,000 up to a total of $500,000. Low income, hourly wage workers and small business owners are the hardest hit by Coronavirus related shutdowns and food banks are a critical component in the community to ensure families don’t go hungry If they are unable to work. Feeding America is the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, working to connect people with food to end hunger. Check here for more on how Feeding America works to end hunger in this country and Download the T-Mobile Tuesdays app to support the donation effort.
  • The T-Mobile Foundation is giving $100,000 to the COVID-19 Response Fund hosted by the Seattle Foundation, which will rapidly deploy resources to community-based organizations at the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak in the greater Seattle and Puget Sound region.
  • The T-Mobile Foundation is also offering a 2:1 match for employees who want to give additional funds to Feeding America or the CDC Foundation that supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s critical health protection work. 

 

UPDATE: March 16, 2020


Clarity on Customer Offers

We are continuing to work with customers on a case-by-case basis to manage account issues. We do not have an offer available for 60 days of free service and encourage consumers to be cautious of social media posts that may include fraudulent numbers.

 

UPDATE: March 15, 2020


CEO John Legere’s letter to customers: www.t-mobile.com/brand/ceo-update-covid-19

T-Mobile Customer page: https://www.t-mobile.com/brand/ongoing-updates-covid-19

Metro by T-Mobile Customer page: https://www.metrobyt-mobile.com/ongoing-updates-covid-19

 
UPDATE: March 14, 2020


Stores

We want to ensure that we are available to customers in need of support while also maintaining safety and promoting personal wellness in our store environments. In response to guidance around social distancing, starting 3/15 we will temporarily close our indoor mall stores until further notice. This includes all T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile, including dealer stores, that are physically located inside a shopping mall. We are maintaining compensation for our teams and supporting our independent operators through the end of the month and will continue to monitor the situation.

Visit our T-Mobile store locator page for store status and hours. 
Visit our Metro store locator page for store status and hours.

Network Capacity
T-Mobile is continuing to take steps to help ensure everyone across the country can stay connected during this critical time, and we just announced agreements with multiple spectrum holders to light up additional 600 MHz spectrum for the next 60 days, expanding network capacity for customers across the country. We’re also expanding roaming access for Sprint customers to use the T-Mobile network. More here.

 
ORIGINAL POST: March 13, 2020 


We continue to closely monitor the impact of COVID-19 on communities across the country. We recognize that T-Mobile customers are relying on our network to ensure they have critical connections with family, loved ones and service providers. Keeping our customers connected and our employees safe and healthy are our highest priorities. Below is an update on our ongoing efforts.

Network and Connectivity
Our network is currently fully operational and functioning at 100% reliability. To ensure that it continues to perform for all of our customers, even under anticipated times with heavier traffic, we have Network Operations Centers that operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week to monitor our network traffic, including calls to 911, and a widespread technician workforce that is able to rapidly respond to any issues.

Now, more than ever, as school and workplace closures are happening each day, reliable internet connectivity is crucial. The vast majority of customers on T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile plans already have unlimited talk, text and data, and our T-Mobile Home Internet customers already have unlimited plans with no data caps or surcharges. But in these unique circumstances, access to unlimited data is more important than ever. So today we are stepping up to take measures that will ensure that ALL current T-Mobile customers on plans that currently have data are provided the unlimited connectivity they need to learn and work.

  • ALL current T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers as of March 13, 2020 who have legacy plans without unlimited high-speed data will get unlimited smartphone data for the next 60 days (excluding roaming). 
  • Starting March 20, 2020, providing T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers on smartphone plans with hotspot data an additional 20GB of smartphone mobile hotspot (10GB per bill cycle for the next 60 days) for each voice line. (T-Mobile Connect excluded).
  • Working with our Lifeline partners to provide customers extra free data up to 5GB of data per month through May 13, 2020.
  • Increasing the data allowance for free to schools and students using our EmpowerED digital learning programs to ensure each participant has access to at least 20GB of data per month through May 13, 2020.


Additionally, we are now:

  • Offering free international calling for ALL current T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers to landline (and in many cases mobile) numbers in many severely impacted countries. 
    Visit our Customer FAQs page and see the ‘Are you offering anything for customers who need to call families overseas?’ question under ‘Our Customers’ for the full list.
  • Supporting the FCC’s Keep Americans Connected Pledge focused on ensuring residential and small business customers with financial impacts do not lose service.
     

Taking Care of Our Customers
We want our customers to feel comfortable in our stores so they can come in and get help to stay connected. We’ve increased cleaning and sanitization efforts and added more disinfecting wipes, soap and hand sanitizers for employees and customers. In addition, technicians servicing T-Vision customers in their homes will have hand sanitizer, masks and gloves with them to use when appropriate.

We also have many ways for customers to interact with us digitally:

  • Manage your account and services, upgrade your phone and more in the T-Mobile App (in the App Store or Google Play) or My T-Mobile.
  • Reach your Team of Experts (customers and businesses) by dialing 611.
  • Connect with us through Facebook and Twitter @TMobileHelp.

If you prefer to shop with us online, we are giving customers free two-day shipping on devices for 60 days as a courtesy.

And should you need support with your account due to unexpected financial impacts, please contact us immediately so we can help you.

Keeping Our Employees Safe
Our employees are our company’s heart and soul, and we are taking a range of actions to keep them as safe as possible. We continue to closely monitor the situation across the country, tracking recommendations and directives from federal, state and local authorities.

In most parts of the country, we are encouraging employees in roles that allow the option to work from home through the end of the month to do so. For employees who do not have this option, we are supporting them with flexible work schedules or, where needed, providing additional paid time off for sickness and family support.

As T-Mobile is an essential provider of service and it’s vital that we continue to be there for our customers, we have also established a support structure for our employees in roles that do not have an option to work from home. These include:

  • Working with them on flexible work schedules
  • Providing Paid Time Not Worked for those employees in high risk categories, are sick or have been diagnosed with COVID-19 (up to 14 days)
  • Providing Paid Time Not Worked for employees who need intermediate support for childcare arrangements during immediate school closures (up to 5 days plus additional individual assistance on a case-by-case basis as needed)
  • Establishing commission guarantees and bonus guarantee in roles where that applies to ensure consistency in income
  • Working with our independently-owned operator partners to implement a support plan for them and their employees

We also continue to encourage healthy practices such as personal distancing and hand washing and have increased cleaning and sanitation in all our facilities. We will do what we can to keep our people healthy.

This is an unprecedented situation and we understand the importance of continuing to be the reliable network that our customers depend on each and every day. We continue to have those who are personally impacted in our thoughts.

 

During congestion, T-Mobile customers using>50GB/mo. & Metro customers using >35GB/mo. may notice reduced speeds; Home Internet & Essentials customers may notice speeds lower than other customers & Metro customers may notice reduced speeds vs. T-Mobile customers due to data prioritization. On-device usage is prioritized over tethering usage, which may result in higher speeds for data used on device. Tethering speeds vary by plan. See details at t-mobile.com.

 

 

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