The so-called “Un-carrier” last year teamed up with BankMobile to launch pilot apps on iOS and Android as well as browser webpages for T-Mobile’s banking service. T-Mobile promises no fees for overdrafts or ATM withdrawals as a primary draw to ditch the big banks.
“We found people are just paying too much for their checking accounts in overdraft fees and banking fees,” Tiffany Minor, marketing director for financial services at T-Mobile said in an interview with GeekWire.
T-Mobile promotes a 1 percent annual percentage yield (APY) on all T-Mobile Money balances. T-Mobile wireless customers who deposit at least $200 per month get 4 percent interest on account balances up to $3,000. T-Mobile says this top-end interest is more than 50X over what traditional banks offer.
T-Mobile claims overdraft fees cost U.S. consumers $34 billion in 2017, and that doesn’t even take into account other fees associated with checking accounts.
Through its partnership with BankMobile, T-Mobile Money offers access to more than 55,000 Allpoint ATMs. Minor said roughly seven out of 10 consumers bank digitally these days, a trend that makes T-Mobile Money possible.
T-Mobile has turned its business around over the years by painting itself as a rebel within the wireless industry taking on established giants Verizon and AT&T. T-Mobile Money is an example of exporting this playbook to other industries as is its recent move into cable TV.