Mobile Essentials offers unlimited data with no frills

Doris Richards
August 6, 2018

T-Mobile Essentials does without the usual add-ons of worldwide data access, unlimited mobile hotspot, and other features, in the name of keeping the price down every month.

In brief: T-Mobile's new unlimited plan could be an attractive offer for some but be wary of the details - taxes and fees aren't rolled in and you'll be the first to be throttled during times of network congestion.

If not, and you don't ever go to Canada or Mexico, then I'm not sure why you wouldn't downgrade to this new Essentials plan. The plan will be available Friday and costs $60 for a single line, $30 for the second line and $15 per line for lines 3-6, plus taxes and fees with autopay. Essentials includes unlimited talk, text, and 2G data when roaming, but only in Canada and Mexico.

In return, you get what used to be the core premise of every phone plan: calls, messaging, and data. The plan essentially is the least expensive of T-Mobile's three unlimited options, and the launch of the offering comes amid similar tiered-pricing strategies from the rest of the nation's wireless operators. Internet traffic from any device on the Essentials plan is always given low priority. Essentials doesn't include things like a free Netflix plan or the ability to use data internationally.

One other tidbit in today's announcement is that T-Mobile is increasing the high-speed mobile hotspot allotment included with T-Mobile One Plus. For $10 more, users get 1080p video and 10 GB of hotspot data before dropping to 3G.

If you want unlimited calling, and 512 MB of up to 4G LTE data, in those countries, you can buy a $5/day 24 Hour Global Pass. If you don't have auto payments enabled, you'd need to pay $5 extra per line per month. For a family of 4, that would be $120/mo or $30 per line.

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