Ahead of the holiday season, T-Mobile USA is offering a combination of cheaper data plans and inexpensive Android devices to attract first-time smartphone buyers. The offers include four phones under $100 with one as low as $10 and data plans as cheap as $10 a month.
The new low-cost data plans and smartphones being offered by T-Mobile and other carriers this winter will help accelerate the trend of Americans walking around with internet-connected devices. Nielsen said today that in the third quarter, 28 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers now have smartphones, which are cellphones “resembling those of computers.” In the second quarter, the smartphone penetration rate was 25 percent.
T-Mobile isn’t the only one offering tiered data plans that provide entry-level pricing that is more comfortable for first-time smartphone owners. There’s three plans including a 200 MB of data for $10 a month with a two-year contract; 200 MB for $15 a month for users without a contract; unlimited access for $30 a month. In addition, subscribers who have the unlimited plan can pay an additional $15 a month for “tethering and WiFi,” which users to connect WiFi devices, like laptops, tablets and netbooks, to your phone.
The Android smartphone line-up under $100 includes the T-Mobile Comet for $9.99; the LG (SEO: 066570) Optimus T for $30; the Motorola (NYSE: MOT) Charm for $50; and the Motorola Defy for $100. All of the phones require a two-year service agreement. T-Mobile will also be offering a number of high-end smartphones, including HTC HD7, BlackBerry Bold 9780 , T-Mobile G2, T-Mobile myTouch 4G, and Samsung’s tablet the Galaxy Tab.