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T-Mobile grows LTE footprint, eases smartphone access

T-Mobile General Manager Jorge Martel (wearing baseball cap) discusses the carrier's new strategies during a news conference at the Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan.

T-Mobile General Manager Jorge Martel (wearing baseball cap) discusses the carrier’s new strategies during a news conference at the Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan.

Wireless carrier T-Mobile continues to expand its 4G LTE coverage in Puerto Rico with the inclusion of more than 25 towns and 90 percent of the population into its network, General Manager Jorge Martel said Wednesday.

Over the past two years, the carrier has invested more than $250 million to grow its LTE footprint into new areas that now include Fajardo, Cidra, Santa Isabel, Ponce, San German, Isabela, Hatillo, Manatí, Toa Alta, Hato Rey, Isla Verde, Caimito, Condado, Inter Metro, Inter Bayamón and Plaza Carolina, among others, he said.

T-Mobile has created 150 jobs in the past two months, Martel noted.

During a news conference at the Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, where T-Mobile is sponsoring the Caribbean Baseball Classic, Martel also unveiled a “triple-play” of strategies to rewards customer loyalty, expand the penetration of smart devices, and cater to a segment of the population with credit barriers.

Starting this week, T-Mobile unveiled its “Smartphone Equality” strategy that guarantees customers the power to acquire the best smartphones available, regardless of their credit rating and that rewards customer loyalty. “Smartphone Equality” proposes that T-Mobile customers who have paid their wireless bill on time for 12 consecutive months qualify for the best smartphones and tablets at the best available price, including zero down payment, no interest and no credit check.

Meanwhile, the carrier also began offering the Score! discount program for pre-paid customers or those who bring their own equipment, through which for $5 a month, they can buy the device they want. After six months, the customer automatically qualifies for a free entry-level smartphone. After a year, they can tap into smartphone and tablet offers available.

Finally, T-Mobile also unveiled its Simply Pre-Paid service, which expands benefits for pre-paid customers through which they can receive unlimited data, long distance calling to the U.S. mainland, texting and 4G LTE data in Puerto Rico and stateside, starting at $40 a month.

“We remain focused on listening to our customers, addressing the harmful effects caused by other wireless companies, and these new moves respond to what they have asked us,” Martel said. “They also respond to the economic reality we are living.”

“As we did in 2014 — a historic year for T-Mobile — in 2015 we will continue with more strength and energy,” Martel added.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 30 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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