T-Mobile Doubles User Data Allotment in Escalating Battle

Wireless-data prices are falling as T-Mobile US Inc. escalates the battle for customers.

T-Mobile, the fourth-largest U.S. wireless carrier, said yesterday it will double to 1 gigabyte the amount of data alloted to its $50-a-month Simple Choice package. The new plan also lets customers use their phones as mobile hot spots to connect other devices without extra charges.

The move is the latest in what has become a back-and-forth volley of plan adjustments, price cuts and increased data buckets. AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and Sprint Corp. have each introduced new discounts this year to keep customers from leaving for T-Mobile.

“This is huge for us -- it’s the first time we have made a significant change in our data allocation since 2012,” Mike Sievert, marketing chief for T-Mobile, said in an interview. “We’ve been profitably growing our company by giving customers what they want, and what they want is more data.”

Over the past year, Bellevue, Washington-based T-Mobile became the first carrier to introduce quicker phone upgrades, payment financing, international data and text-messaging at no extra charge. It also started a $450 credit program for customers who switch from other providers. The moves have helped T-Mobile gain 2.1 million monthly customers in the past three quarters, a reversal of its 2012 performance.

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