T-Mobile has made some remarkable changes over the past year and a half or so. It’s interesting to see this revolution that the company has gone through in order to paint the company in a better light, given that not too long ago the company was nearly bought out by AT&T. From the outside, it looked like T-Mobile was struggling to stand on its own two feet. However, the case is completely different today. T-Mobile has been making headlines consecutively - in a good way - for quite some time at this point with their “UnCarrier” moves as they strive to break away from the norm when it comes to “The Big Four” carriers in the United States.
In their latest move, UnCarrier 8.0, T-Mobile has revealed that they’re mixing old with the new by letting customers’ (who fit under a certain criteria) unused data bank each month. Essentially, it’s taking that one revolutionary step that Cingular took so many years ago with rollover minutes and making it more appropriate for modern day usage. It’s actually a pretty great idea, but I think that when it comes to the criteria needed to qualify for Data Stash, T-Mobile kind of missed the mark.
In order to qualify for Data Stash, you need to be a postpaid customer and have at least 3GB of data on your smartphone plan every month, or 1GB of data for tablet users. I don’t think that these users should not be allowed to use Data Stash, but I think the customers that could really use the feature are the ones with data plans on the lower end of the spectrum. Also, I feel like prepaid customers shouldn’t be left out.
I think everybody who doesn’t already use an unlimited data plan could heavily benefit from Data Stash. People who use plans that only give 500MB, 1GB, or even 2GB of data per month are more than likely going to be the people who nervously check how much data they’ve used throughout the month. If they have anything left over at the end of the month, why shouldn’t they also be allowed to bank that unused data into the next month? If nothing else, it would at least give them a safety net.
And sure, one could argue that if they signed up for a plan with a lower allotment of data then they might not be using all that much data each month to begin with - but you know how it goes. Many people don’t realize just how much data they use in a given month, and even if it’s your very first smartphone you might be surprised to learn that you like to e-mail, game, social network, web browse and watch media even more than you thought you would. Even if limited use is the case, though, I feel that they’re just as entitled to Data Stash as people in the 3GB+ range. Maybe they’re not paying as much money every month, but they’re still paying money for data.
Despite where I think T-Mobile could have really hit a home run with their customers, I do think that Data Stash is a great implementation. While unlimited data plans aren’t exactly hard to come by these days, they are sometimes hard to justify spending the money on it if you don’t intend on using tons and tons of data each month. With Data Stash, you can choose a considerably smaller allotment of data each month (that you know you’ll more than likely stay under) and benefit from watching the data stash up over the months and build yourself a nice safety net, or even just save up for a couple of really heavy months of data usage if you know there are going to be certain months where you use more data over others.
Maybe UnCarrier 9.0, should it ever happen, will allow for Data Stash to be included in all plans?