T-Mobile to customers: The iPhone is great, but Apple won’t let us sell it to you

T-Mobile won't be getting the iPhone 5 this year

It sure sounds like T-Mobile Chief Marketing Officer Cole Brodman wants the iPhone, but don’t look for the wireless operator to start carrying the gadget anytime soon. In a note to customers this week, Brodman identified with those T-Mobile customers who’ve expressed disappointment that the company doesn’t have the iPhone in its arsenal of smartphones.

“To these customers, first, thank you for your business.  Please know that we think the iPhone is a great device and Apple knows that we’d like to add it to our line-up,” he wrote. “Today, there are over a million T-Mobile customers using unlocked iPhones on our network. We are interested in offering all of our customers a no-compromise iPhone experience on our network.”

The message then took an unusual turn, with Brodman touting the superiority of some of the company’s recently launched Android devices.

“Android has evolved quickly from geek to chic,” wrote Brodman. “In many ways, Android is rivaling and even outpacing the iPhone, including consumer adoption, market share and capabilities like support for faster 4G networks.”

T-Mobile is likely to be the only major carrier in the U.S. without an iPhone this holiday season, and the Bellevue carrier is doing its best to make the case that its phones are cheaper and faster. [Previously on GeekWire: T-Mobile pits two speedy new smartphones against iPhone]

Brodman

Can T-Mobile make it as the only carrier without the iPhone?

As we just pointed out in the previous post, sales of Android have been on the rise in recent months, but that could change quickly as soon as Apple unveils its iPhone 5. (Slated for October 4th).

It sure seems like Brodman and the rest of the crew at T-Mobile would prefer to have both the iPhone and Android.

Unfortunately for T-Mobile customers, it appears that they will be stuck with Android in the coming months.

Previously on GeekWire: HTC boss on Windows Phone 7, patent wars and why iPhones aren’t cool anymore

  • http://twitter.com/davidniu David Niu

    Well, if the AT&T and T-Mobile goes through, I’m assuming that current T-Mobile users will be able to have choice and can then get the iPhone via AT&T?

    • johnhcook

      That’s a big “if” though and certainly won’t be happening this year. 

    • http://twitter.com/Vroo Vroo (Bruce Leban)

      Current T-Mobile users can get the iPhone — all they need to do is switch carriers to AT&T or Verizon (and maybe Sprint soon).

      If the merger goes through, T-Mobile users will still only be able to get the iPhone by switching carriers. AT&T is unlikely to allow T-Mobile customers to switch without signing up for an AT&T plan. In fact, if history is a guide (and it usually is), they won’t allow T-Mobile customers to get any new phones without switching to an AT&T plan. (Like what happened when Cingular bought AT&T Wireless.)

  • http://www.atebymonsters.com Matt

    They just need to continue to push Android and Windows Phone … there are better phones out there than the iPhone.  Stuck with the iPhone until the 3G, didn’t see the phone advancing in UI, or features.  Jumped to Android with the EVO 4G, the fragmentation and quality of apps turned me off.  Sitting with Windows Phone 7.5 now and haven’t looked back.

    • rickg

      It’s not a question of ‘better’ which is a personal decision in any event. It’s a question of options. For example, I have the option of getting the Samsung SGS II on other carriers too. AND… on those carriers I can get the iPhone and usually a Windows phone. So when I’m buying a new handset, do I want a carrier that gives me all 3 major options or one that cannot supply me with an iPhone? 

      I’ve been with T-Mo for 11 years. Since I have a year old Android phone now, I’ll be there another year. But if, at this time next year, they don’t have the iPhone option I will have to at least look around much as I love the customer service and pricing at T-Mo. 

      PS: Yes, you can jailbreak an iPhone and 1m people have on T-Mo… but they get EDGE speeds, not 3G or above. 

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AWWIKW6MNPUHOC4OVSHWUDWAHM Fabio

        Edge isn’t that slow, and with the current carriers who offer the iPhone on 3G (Verizon and AT&T) with LIMITED amounts of data. At least with T-Mobile even if it’s edge speeds it is unlimited. Also there’s Wifi available everywhere in major cities, so I don’t think edge speeds is such a huge deal. I have my factory unlocked iPhone 4 on T-Mobile and I use edge speeds when wifi isn’t available and it’s not bad at all. But then again there’s wifi everywhere.

  • Guest

    “Unfortunately for T-Mobile customers, it appears that they will be stuck with Android in the coming months”

    showing a little bias, or bad writing?  Surely it’s only “unfortunate” for T-Mobile customers who want a phone on contract (as pointed out in the article, there are already over 1 million unlocked iPhone users on the T-Mobile network, and there are a lot of happy Android users who have no desire for the iOS lockdown experience

  • Anonymous

    Ive used jail broken iPhones on T-Mobile for years with no complaints.
    real-privacy.net.tc

  • Anonymous

    Now that we’re not getting the iPhone a lot of people may jump ship (from what I’ve read on forums) and I hope TM doesn’t raise its rates if they lose a lot of customers. But realize this. It would be cheaper to get an unlocked iPhone than to switch to ATT or Verizon just to to get the iPhone especially if you are grandfathered in a low rate internet plan (like I am). Compare rates before you switch carriers in blind fury.

    • Littlesis1774

      If they lose a lot of customers then T-mobile will pulling hair out to figure why

  • Yetter

    Maybe five years ago this was a big deal but there are plenty of smartphones out there that compare to the iPhone so just pick one of those up

  • Sonyarayner

    I don’t understand! All these carriers are gonna have the iphone but T-Mobile that just stinks! I think I’m going to change carries if T-Mobile don’t get the iPhone and android isn’t all that great! Just saying. I have been with T-Mobile for 6 years and I want the iPhone sorry

    • Psych311

      Android users are more happy then iPhone users.  I have used both and they are the same.  If you don’t like Android then you will hate iOS.  It is a matter of fact