Roam If You Want To: T-Mobile Provides Free International Roaming

Unlimited data and texting in more than 120 countries gives global travelers new reasons to switch to T-Mobile, which may help this company's stock value rise.

Mar 26, 2014 at 3:00PM

T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS) wants your business, and the company is giving rivals' customers more reasons than ever before to switch carriers. According to CNNMoney, T-Mobile recently began providing free international roaming for frequent travelers as part of its Simple Choice plan.

For those who travel outside of the U.S. and are signed up for this plan, they can enjoy unlimited data and texting in more than 120 countries. In addition, under this plan, calls cost only $0.20 per minute, providing a cheaper alternative to similar plans offered by AT&T (NYSE:T) and Verizon (NYSE:VZ).

When in roam...
Free international roaming is a key differentiator that could help T-Mobile separate itself from rivals. Currently, T-Mobile is the only carrier that provides unlimited data and texting to customers around the globe. If T-Mobile continues to improve its service, the company could profit. 

While T-Mobile provides complementary data and texting outside of the U.S., it only offers these services at 2G speeds. As a result, the speeds at which these services operate can be slow, especially when compared to 3G and 4G networks. 

Nevertheless, the fact that T-Mobile offers free international roaming gives it a competitive edge. To keep up with T-Mobile, AT&T customers can sign up for a GoPhone plan, which enables them to pay for talk, text, and data services in up to 225 countries. Verizon, meanwhile, provides international data and texting in more than 150 countries, yet charges customers for both services.

Competition between T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon is fierce, and each company is ready to take drastic measures to attract new customers to its services. While T-Mobile now offers free international roaming, the move could lead AT&T and Verizon to lower their service prices or offer additional incentives to customers in hopes of boosting sales.

Don't call it a comeback
T-Mobile looked dead in the water in the fourth quarter of 2012, posting -9.6% service revenue growth for the time frame. However, T-Mobile has made a strong push over the past year, improving by 8.5 percentage points in this category year-over-year.

An aggressive marketing strategy has helped T-Mobile increase sales, and T-Mobile has no plans to slow down in the near future. In fact, the company has offered to pay new customers' service cancellation fees if they drop their old carriers, has eliminated early termination fees and overage charges, and no longer requires a traditional two-year contract. So far, the moves have paid off big, and are likely to create more competition among cell phone carriers. 

Meanwhile, T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon may bring out the best in each going forward. T-Mobile has shown that it is willing to take chances to improve sales, and AT&T and Verizon could soon follow suit as the cell phone carrier battles heat up over the next few months.

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Daniel Kobialka has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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