Tags: @Home, @Home Service, Hotspot @Home, UMA, Wireline replacement
Update (Feb. 2010): T-Mobile confirms this (currently unofficial) rumor: @Home Service will be discontinued as soon as the current set of inventory (@Home routers) is sold, so if you like this service, go get the hardware now. T-Mobile will support existing subscribers. This removes the best wireline replacement service currently on the market in the U.S., as T-Mobile turns instead to focus on wireless-only services. Bad news for anyone that still likes to use a wireline phone (example: I use an excellnt Polycom conference phone for hours at a time in my home office).
Rumors are circulating that T-Mobile is about to discontinue their @Home service (although I have been unable to confirm this officially). Although these rumors refer to a statement made on January 7th by a T-Mobile rep, there is no official mention of it on the T-Mobile web site. Strange. Even the purported T-Mobile statement is vague, and gives no clear reason for the change.
If true, then my interpretation is that T-Mobile is focusing less on the interim step (supporting wireline use with a VoIP product delivering small profit) and is focusing more on the destination, mobile-only use (and wireline replacement). This is consistent with the original rumor that referenced COO dislike for its lack of profitability, reported by Boy Genius in December.
This would remove an attractive alternative for some consumers that are cutting the cord, but prefer to still maintain wireline (and cordless) devices in their home. For those that are interested in eliminating their telephone and Long Distance bills, please check out the menu of options that I just reviewed.
Here are links to the rumors (and I would welcome definitive news of this, if it exists):
- RUMORS – RUMORS- RUMORS – RUMORS- RUMORS – RUMORS- RUMORS – RUMORS -
T-Mobile shuts down @Home landline replacement service
January 8, 2010 — 7:49am ET | By Sean Buckley
“T-Mobile was so confident that its @Home landline replacement service would be such a draw for consumers that when it introduced the service in July 2008 it had a commercial showing a woman cutting down phone lines with a chain saw. Cautioning consumers not to literally cut down lines, the @Home service tried to sell the idea that you could cut the phone company’s cord and get dirt cheap calling through your broadband line. But with so many new broadband VoIP options on the market, the @Home service never took off the way T-Mobile envisioned it and now it’s going to stop selling the service. T-Mobile will, however, support existing @Home customers.
The idea was simple enough. For $10 a month, a user could make unlimited local and long-distance calls by plugging a T-Mobile provided box into their respective cable or DSL broadband line. Although T-Mobile did not disclose why it’s cancelling the service, it’s likely that T-Mobile realized just as did Verizon when it canceled its Hub service last fall that its customers would just use their wireless phone instead of a new landline replacement service
- MORE RUMORS – MORE RUMORS- MORE RUMORS- MORE RUMORS- MORE RUMORS -
T-Mobile USA said Thursday it will no longer sell its @Home landline replacement service, although it will continue to support the customers already using it. The Deutsche Telekom-owned wireless service provider introduced T-Mobile@Home in July 2008; for $10 per month, the product – a box plugged into a broadband connection and landline phone – allowed subscribers to make unlimited local and long-distance calls. T-Mobile didn’t say why it’s yanking @Home, but rival Verizon Wireless last fall axed its similar offering, Hub, because customers relied on wireless services rather than the landline replacement option. It’s fair to speculate that T-Mobile’s users are following much the same patterns. T-Mobile emphasized the @Home decision does not impact the company’s Unlimited HotSpot Wi-Fi service.
- ORIGINAL RUMOR- ORIGINAL RUMOR- ORIGINAL RUMOR- ORIGINAL RUMOR-
by Kelly Hodgkins on January 7th, 2010
About a month ago, one of our tipsters hit us up to let us know that T-Mobile was probably in the process of shutting down their @Home service. The @Home service allowed T-Mobile customers to make home phone calls via a T-Mobile router connected to the internet. The @Home service was an available add-on to most wireless service plans offered by T-Mobile for a modest $10/month. Bad news for future @Home customers, though, because another circulating rumor confirms what we reported a month ago — T-Mobile has supposedly halted future investment in the @Home service. Current customers can continue to use the service and T-Mobile will continue to support it for the time being. Once the current inventory of @Home routers has been sold, T-Mobile will no longer offer this service to new customers, though. Any T-Mobile customers interested in jumping on board, should do so tout de suite.