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T-Mobile offers free Apple TV+ as fight for customers intensifies

August 23, 2021, 3:28 PM UTC

T-Mobile is offering 12 free months of Apple TV+ to new and existing subscribers of select rate plans.

The move comes amid increased competition among cellular companies to lock in customers as 5G technology begins to spread, and the most popular carrot to lure those customers is with streaming subscriptions. T-Mobile already offers free Netflix to people with unlimited data plans on an ongoing basis.  

Other carriers are aligning with different streamers. AT&T offers free access to HBO Max to some customers. Verizon recently announced a deal to give some customers a free year of AMC+ and has existing deals to offer Hulu, Disney+, and ESPN+, as well as Discovery+ and Apple Arcade, for one year or Google Play Pass.

Subscribers of the Magenta, Magenta MAX, and T-Mobile for Business plans are eligible for the promotion. Buying an Apple phone is not a requirement of the offer. (Apple, separately, is offering three free months to anyone who buys an Apple device.)

Apple TV+ is normally priced at $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year and includes the hit show Ted Lasso.

The offer, like those from other carriers, works to the advantage of both the phone company and the streaming service. For streaming services, it’s a good way to hook customers and become part of their viewing habits before the monthly charges begin. Cell phone carriers can increase their customer base as they roll out 5G services.

That’s important, since customer loyalty is fierce in the mobile market. A 2019 study from tech recycling site Decluttr found that one-third of Americans have stayed with their mobile carrier for more than six years.

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