'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year," says T-Mobile CMO

'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year," says T-Mobile CMO

Summary: Did T-Mobile really admit it won't be carrying the iPhone 5, before the next-gen phone is even announced?


Earlier yesterday, TmoNews obtained a write-up of T-Mobile's internal Town Hall held on September 15, where Chief Marketing Officer Cole Brodman was quoted as saying, " We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year."

This simple statement has set off many long-time T-Mobile customers online, who are now ready to sign up with any other iPhone-toting carrier, all before the new iPhone has even been announced or T-Mobile has confirmed this statment.

Assuming Brodman really made this statement to T-Mobile employees, I think it's telling he did not say T-Mobile will never get the iPhone 5, just that it's not going to be adding it to the lineup in 2011. As the country's number four carrier with the most uncertain future -- its merger with AT&T may be denied and parent company Deutsche Telekom AG (DTE) just wants out of the U.S. market -- I think it knows better than anyone how lucrative and essential it is to get the next-gen iPhone. But it's also possible that Apple's partnership with AT&T, T-Mobile's GSM rival and potential owner, could have a clause that gives AT&T exclusivity on the phone for a set length of time, so there is nothing T-Mobile can do but wait its turn.

As AppleInsider mentioned, it is also possible that it will be the rumored iPhone 4S/GS, rather than the iPhone 5, that will be coming to T-Mobile; after all, Brodman's comment only cited the iPhone 5. Of course, that is assuming the updated iPhone 4S/GS is even for real, but we won't find out until Apple makes it official one way or another, purportedly in a couple of weeks.

Those who must get the next iPhone but prefer T-Mobile's more reasonable plans and service, you still have an option: purchase an unlocked phone from the Apple store when it hits stores, and go the Pay-As-You-Go route and use the slower 2G/EDGE network when not in Wi-Fi range. If it turns out T-Mobile will be rolled into AT&T after all, at least you won't be stuck in a contract with AT&T.

Lost in the discussion about T-Mobile's lack of the iPhone 5 is the other little tidbit Brodman revealed at the Town Hall: that T-Mobile will be announcing two new phones on Monday, September 26, with one potentially being the Samsung Galaxy S II, also known as the iPhone-killer. T-Mobile's PR team also confirmed it will be announcing some new handsets next week, according to BGR:

We don’t comment on rumors. We remain focused on expanding our portfolio of 4G smartphones. We look forward to sharing on Monday, news about our latest and greatest product lineup.

I'm not convinced the GS2 will appeal to the same crowd as the iPhone's, so I doubt the carrier's release of the popular Samsung phone will ease the pain of disappointed T-Mobile customers. It seems anything short of a T-Mobile-branded-iPhone 5 in 2011 will not be enough for customers, and by 2012 it could be all too late for the beleaguered carrier. I hope I'm wrong.

[Source: TmoNews, BGR, AppleInsider, Reuters]



Topics: Smartphones, Hardware, iPhone, Mobility

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  • Next year is too late for me.

    I've been a T-mobile customer for years and I've waited long enough for the iPhone to come to TMO. It's time to retire the aging dumb phones and get our first-ever smart phones on the family plan. Since we really want iPhones I guess we'll be saying goodbye to TMO in a couple of weeks.
  • I don't care

    I was one of the suckers who got a G2X on the first day they came out. It's been a PITA since the beginning due to lack of quality control by both LG and TMO. When the iPhone 5 hits, I'm telling TMO where they can stick their crappy flagship phone, where they can stick their contract, and where they can stick their ETF.

    They lied to us, then ignored us for months. Screw 'em.
  • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

    I'm just wondering. Everyone in the press keep acting as if TMobile is verging on bankruptcy and AT&T is trying to save them. Has anyone ever actually looked at their balance sheet to see if they are still profitable? As long as they are profitable, they aren't going to go *poof* overnight.

    That said, they really need to pay attention to their customers and finally offer some decent phones.
    • Milk it til it dies

      @BillDem We can't tell whether they are profitable. T-Mobile is owned by Deutsche Telekom, which doesn't break out results.

      It appears that DT decided some time ago to "harvest" T-Mobile in the U.S. They want rid of it, so they aren't spending much to keep it current while they shop it around. The result is that T-Mobile has been losing customers at a prodigious rate. It's probably profitable for DT, but only because they are NOT spending to keep it up-to-date. If they were, odds are it would be a loser, which is why they want to be rid of it.

      It won't go 'poof' but it's going to have go something pretty soon. The whole time the DOJ screws with the merger, customers are leaving in droves.
      Robert Hahn
  • We don't need no steenking I-Phones

    I got the G2X when it came out as well. The folks at the T-mobile store actually let me return two phones so I could get the G2X. I renewed the family plan 20 days before the G2X became available, and they let me restart the 14-day return period when I picked up my second phone just so I could return it and get the G2X. I have absolutely no complaints about the phone. I can get apps from more than one source, and can hold the phone any way I want and still make calls. And after months of being carried in the same pocket as my car keys, without a screen protector, the touchscreen is still scratch free.
    • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

      @robbieharrison@... Good for you.
  • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

    IMO, this is nothing more than positioning so AT&T can say "see, they're stagnant and their customers what this product which they will have if they join with us." We know companies talk and do behind the scenes trying to sweeten the deal. Look at the firings of several executives that went on with Skype before Microsoft actually bought them. No company would let their senior executive staff go unless they were doing a ****** job, which they weren't because they clearly were doing a good job enough so that another company wanted to by them, or they wanted to trim the fat and prepare for new management, which you would do in phases and not all at once unless you had an already established team ready to take over because doing so at once would fundamentally change the company at its core. Everything surrounding AT&T and T-Mobile reeks to me of positioning and political maneuvers to get regulators and people to want the merger even though it is nothing but bad for the average consumer.
  • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

    I had gone to t-mobile and asked if I could cancel my plan in the case I will go to at&t and the woman said we are getting the iPhone next year between January & may
  • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

    Boo hoo! Some of you folks are acting like little babies....or someone with no common sense...

    Let's see..If I leave TM to get a phone that I "think" will make me look cool, will result in me signing a new contract...paying a higher plan rate...(in fact someone do the math...how much money over 2 years will you be paying just to "have" a phone that apple has hypothesized you into thinking you have to have)?

    I've been with TM since 2001 (yeah I know...long time), I don't have ANY contracts (I've got five phone/lines)! And TM has always taken care of me. I for one am glad the merger might fail... the last thing I want is the crappy Customer Service that I'd be force to switch to.
  • RE: 'We are not going to get the iPhone 5 this year,

    There are two kinds of people out there. Those who never had an iPhone and the others. The first ones usually bitch about how crappy iPhones are, even though they never had one. The others know better. I am using HTC Evo now, after 3 years with iPhone 3G. I got my Evo in December because the 3G got unusable after the upgrade to iOS 4. It was a big mistake. I should have gone into iPhone 4 instead of the droid crap. Well, I'll wait for iPhone 5.