T-Mobile announced today that it’s extending Simple Global, its free roaming service, to nearly every country in the world. The feature, which is available to everyone on T-Mobile’s One plan and some customers on older plans, includes 2G-speed data in 210 countries for no extra cost. Although some free data is certainly better than no free data, “2G speeds” are so slow that the majority of applications may simply not work, and you’ll struggle to send and receive picture messages, make VOIP phone calls, or send emails.
The better news is that T-Mobile is now offering a simple LTE data pass when roaming. The pass costs $5 per day (per line), and gets the user up to 512MB of LTE-speed data. That cost isn’t bad at all, and the passes can be bought through T-Mobile’s app.
Some people will probably be aggreivated at the extra step required to go buy a pass just to use normal-speed data abroad, but the safeguard means that you won’t be hit with accidental data roaming charges, which have long been a problem for travellers on postpaid plans. The $5 per day pass also gets users unlimited calls, which is a nice touch.
“More than one in three families planning vacations this year intend to travel internationally, and Verizon and AT&T want you to pay twice as much every day when you travel abroad – it’s ridiculous!” said John Legere, T-Mobile’s CEO, in a press release. “With T-Mobile ONE, you just take your phone with you – turn it on as usual and it works – no worrying over your wireless bill, just enjoy your family time and see the sights!”
The additional Simple Global countries will go into effect July 22nd, while the $5 data passes will be available starting August 1st.