Economics of the T-Mobile BOGO iPhone Deal

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The deal is a bit more complicated than I realized and I definitely think the term BOGO is a misnomer. I thought I’d share the breakdown of the deal for anyone else considering it.

To take advantage of the deal, you need to buy two phones from T-Mobile, bring in an outside number to port in and have a phone to trade in.

Pre-Deal Set Up:

I already had an iPhone 8 Plus 256 GB which I certainly didn’t want to trade in because you can trade in old models like the iPhone 6 and it wouldn’t be worth it to trade the 8 Plus in. I wanted the iPhone X.

I also had to fly out to Sydney the same day that I wanted to take advantage of the offer so I found a Samsung S6 on Craigslist for $160. The cost of Ubering back and forth was $15.00. That’s a total of $175. There were cheaper phones that you can buy for around $80 but given the limited amount of time, I had to take what was available.

The other thing that I needed was a number outside of T-Mobile to port over. Since I was already a T-Mobile customer, I bought a prepaid number from AT&T to port in for $35. Total cost so far is $210.

Deal Set Up:

Since I wanted the iPhone X 256GB, I decided to buy two of them with the intention of selling one later on. For the purposes of the analysis, I’m going to assume that I’ll be able to sell it for the same price (I’ll be selling it abroad where I’ll be able to get slightly more). The cost is $1,149.00 x 2 = $2,298.00 Upfront (ignoring payment plans for now) and you get a $700 Mastercard 2 months later in the post.

In order to be eligible for the deal, you also have to order TWO T-Mobile One lines. I already had a T-Mobile One line which I was paying $80 a month for. But I don’t really have a use for the additional T-Mobile line. You have to keep the additional line for 1 year (according to the rep).

Because of the bundling discount for having 2 lines on the one account, the monthly payment ends up being $130.00 per month for the 2 lines (one line with ONE Plus and the other without which is charged at $10.00 per month per line). That’s an extra $50 per month on top of what I would have been paying which works out being $600 for the year. Of course, I do get the use of an additional line which would be worth it if I actually brought someone else onto the plan. I may just give it to a family member or friend to use. Depending on whether you can actually take advantage of that second line, the $600 can be either a credit or debit on the financial breakdown.

The other benefit that you get with the 2 lines is a free Netflix subscription. Since I am an active Netflix subscriber, that works out to $9.99 a month on the new plan. That’s an annual saving of $119.88.

The final thing to mention is that you can unlock the phone after 4 months and assuming that the phone has been paid off.

Deal Analysis:

Now that we’ve got all the costs figured out, let’s do the analysis.

Costs:

2 x iPhone X 256 GB: $2,298.00
1 x Trade In Phone: $175
1 x Trade In Number: $35
1 x Additional Line: $600

$2,508.00 without Line and $3,108.00 with.

Benefit:

1 x Sale of iPhone X 256 GB: $1,149.00
1 x Netflix Plan: $119.88

 

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