Sprint's guaranteeing a $200 minimum smartphone trade-in credit for T-Mobile switchers

Sprint's taking the fight straight to T-Mobile and is offering customers of the Un-carrier a guaranteed minimum trade-in credit of $200 for their current working T-Mobile smartphone. That's in addition to the current contract buy-out offer (though T-Mobile ditched traditional contracts nearly two years ago) or up to $350 in credit to pay for their new Sprint phone.

The offer's good through April 9, and as with the $350 switcher credit, can be combined per line. Though it's worth noting that any high-end smartphone in good condition, even one from the last two years, will likely fetch more than $200 in trade-in. Though if you've got a bargain basement smartphone on your T-Mobile line and have been thinking about a switch to Sprint (check Sprint's coverage map to see if they're good for you), this might be a deal worth considering. Considering their last quarter, Sprint would certainly like you to think about it.

Source: Sprint

Derek Kessler

Derek Kessler is Special Projects Manager for Mobile Nations. He's been writing about tech since 2009, has far more phones than is considered humane, still carries a torch for Palm, and got a Tesla because it was the biggest gadget he could find. You can follow him on Twitter at @derekakessler.

  • What that means??
  • Last ditch effort to avoid bankruptcy.
  • LOL, Sprint needs to offer 10 shares of stock for every line activated hahaha
  • Sprint is sweetening their offfering
  • Kudos! I'm sold to then already and am not regretting it one bit. ;D
  • What's sad is that their coverage hasn't changed in Cincinnati. And still no LTE, while Dayton has coverage. Is Cincinnati's market too crowded? Even after Cincinnati Bell's bands have been bought by Verizon?
  • Don't feel too bad, my brother lives in columbus and doesn't have much LTE...they can offer all they want, I won't be back with Sprint anytime soon.
  • I live in Downey, CA. There has been a surge in better service everywhere I go now,
  • HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA... Yeah, nice try. I enjoy my T-Mobile service and will continue to enjoy it. You couldn't lure me to Sprint with the promise of $1 million to trade in one of my phones.
  • Ok that last part is a bit ridiculous, a million dollars?! I would lol
  • 1 million lol
  • Heck, I'd give up having a smartphone at all for a million bucks
  • LOL... I know, I exaggerated just a tad bit! ;)
  • Funny, i thought the same thing LOL... For a mil i would even wear a sprint shirt... Hahaha
  • My wife has T-Mobile and I get much better coverage with Sprint. We went on a road trip from Denver to Phoenix and her phone didn't even know it was a phone for almost the whole trip. Everyone bashing Sprint, just stop. 
  • But why?  Its this site's favorite hobby?  Nevermind that many of us have great 4G coverage...Sprint must suck, because some internet jockey on a forum says so...
  • Sprint's 4G coverage barely bests T-Mobile's 3G speeds in independent tests. T-Mobile's speeds generally beat all comers in the U.S. market. I'd argue if you want the best coverage, neither Sprint nor T-Mobile is the way to go. T-Mobile offers the best speed, Verizon the best coverage, and AT&T a good halfway point between the two (better speed than Verizon, better coverage than T-Mobile). What's Sprint's niche? What's their compelling proposition? I just don't see it.
  • Depends on where you live but in most places Sprint is awful. I live in the Philadelphia region, hardly the sticks, and had so many dead spots. Not on some country road but residential areas. Also, very slow and they never ever passed along Windows Phone updates. So no. Not again.
  • Ummm...yes they did.  My Ativ S Neo got updated to 8.1 as soon as Sprint released it.
  • A good friend of mine has Sprint. We live in Queens, NYC and he's always complaining to me about having very little to no service in his own house! Pretty horrible.
  • Just like your boyfriend doesn't have T-Mobile service in his own kitchen?
  • How can you have so many dead spots if you can roam off VZW?... Just enable your roaming! sprints roaming agreements are probably the best of any.
  • Last I knew they took the manual roam mode away. The phone sticks with Sprint till its last signal bar, then searches and finally latches on to Verizon. There all sorts of strange limits on roaming data and roaming voice. Not worth the trouble.
  • That makes sense. T-Mobile seems to fail as soon as you leave a major population center.
  • and right down here in Australia I've been reading comments on alot of guy whining at T-Mobile not doing enough for Windows Phone user and right now many of you are praising T-Mobile. What's going on ?
  • Sprint sux
  • Sweet crazy deal.
  • No thanks... Had sprint - left them after 10 years of waiting and growing pain for them to improve coverage.... Customer service was good for me but can't make a call or download files on customer service
  • Sprint is pretty boneheaded not gonna lie.
  • When I saw that their best phone is the Lumia 635, I immediately continued what I was currently doing on my HTC One M8
  • Hahahaha... Good Choice.
  • Sprint service is high already and they don't have any Lumia better than the 635 plus the don't have 2 lines unlimited data for $100 and you can't share your phone's internet connection
  • Lets see I have a 20gb share plan on Sprint that was doubled to 40gb shared between 3 devices all able to use hotspot and tethering which is included in the plan and after my discount only costing me $117 a month. Sometimes people need to do there homework. And yes unlimited text and calling.
  • "and after my discount" is the key phrase in your statement. Not everyone works somewhere that offers a corporate discount.
  • It is $140 before discounts, do I need to say anything else? That is 2 phones, 1 tablet.
  • Big deal. My T-Mobile plan with four lines and a discount is $116.26 AFTER taxes. What you're describing isn't exactly an earth-shattering deal.
  • Now I know your are full of it, because T-Mobile doesn't do discounts anymore. Try again.
  • Yeah they do. They have a discount for people who work in education.
  • They do if you already had it. That is unless they just happen to completely cut down my bill for the same amount the discount has been every bill.....which would essentially make it a discount anyway.
  • Actually. They do give 2 lines for $100 haha guys read up your stuff!
  • Too little too late. Happy T-Mobile Customer Here. 2nd, Sprint has no Flagship Windows Phone or Windows Tablet. 3rd, Sprint 4G LTE is non existent/scarce in my Community here in South Florida.
    Fool me once shame on you
    Fool me twice shame on me Never again....
  • The next best flagship will be the Lumia and I'm sure TMO will have it ,as soon as it's released. I think you really have to just like sprint to sign on with them. It's cool they have Lumia phones for their customers.
  • Too bad Sprint sucks the big hairy meatball, as T-mobile offered me less than $80 to trade in my Lumia 925 when I still owe $160 on it. I looked into it when the HTC One with Windows came out.
  • Sprint is kind of awful (speaking from experience since I was with them for more than 10 years) but their pricing is always tempting.   My main thing is that even if now they showed real support for WP I cannot go back to a CDMA carrier. I enjoy the abiity to swtich phones at will too much (I don't know if this has changed since I haven't had a CDMA phone since 2 years ago but having to activate each phone is annoying). So not even Verizon would likely tempt me.
  • This. In Canada we had about half and half HSPA vs. CDMA2000 carriers like in the U.S., but all the CDMA2000 carriers switched to HSPA around 2009/2010. Sprint and Verizon waited one generation too long to make the switch, they waited for LTE but should have switched at the HSPA+ stage.
  • We switched from Verizon to Tmo 5 months ago and I'm not looking back. Sprints coverage in SoCal has been poor for my Father in Law and he just switched to Tmo as well.
  • As a non-US resident I keep asking myself why separating device and contract doesn't seem to be an option. Okay, the phone might be subsidized but you'd be independent from carrier / manufacturer politics. Why are consumers not (or perhaps only rarely) considering that?
  • Actually, a lot of people buy their phones unlocked, used or contract free from websites in the US. Out of the 5 smartphones I own, I only bought one of them on contract. I got my iPhone 4 from Apple's web store, my Nokia Lumia 920 from Negrielectronics (which I don't think exists anymore), my Lumia 925 from Newegg and my HTC One M7 from eBay. My boyfriend also got his iPhone 5S from eBay. The 925, M7 and 5S were all reasonably cheap. Also, all of my phones are unlocked, which is a plus. Well, my boyfriend's iPhone is locked to T-Mobile, but that's the only locked phone of the bunch I just mentioned.
  • I used to buy my phones unlocked. Now, I buy AT&T versions. The reason I bought them unlocked before was that I could pass them off as dumb phones on AT&T withouth them charging me those high DATA fees. But it was a hassle getting everything to work right...MMS, internet etc. I swear it's gotten easier now though. I bought an ATIV SE recently and it seemed like cricKet changed all the settings automatically and sent me a text stating some settings couldn't be changed...MMS I s'pose. On a side note, Negrielectronics is dead? That's news to me. I bought a phone or two from them too. Though I do think their prices were on the high side, but they did have one of the biggest selection of phones. 
  • Two of my unlocked phones are actually T-Mobile phones (Nokia Lumia 810 and 925). I had a little trouble configuring the settings for cellular data on my HTC One (an unlocked AT&T phone), but that was only because I goofed up on something; I ended up quickly fixing it later that day. With my iPhone 4, I had the most trouble setting it up because it was my first actual smartphone, but I got the settings from an online search fairly quickly. Data was just a pain back then because all I got was EDGE. Yeah, for awhile a few months back I was trying to go on Negri's website only to find it gone. I got my 920 from them. They were pretty good, so it's a shame they're gone.
  • Americans love their carriers so much so hard ever question their broken system, just look at all the comments here. Plus the majority of American buyers are too cheap to consider buying unlocked and have limited options because of the carrier cartels so just buy what the carrier offers on contract.
  • Not this American I buy unlocked phones now lol.
  • Unlike Europe and other parts of the world where most carriers use the same bands, the carriers in US use different bands for their networks and most often you are stuck with crappy 2G/EDGE data speed when using a phone from a different carrier. I had 1020 and 1520 both AT&T variants on T-mobile's network and most of the time, especially when driving on the freeways these two phones are dead. I recently purchased 1520.3 which has all the T-mobile bands and I just drove from Columbus to Chicago and back without losing any connection within the entire trip.
  • It is an option to separate. However, there are some HUGE perks to buying a phone subsidized...I'm noticing here on WCentral that many of you are not as entirely enlightened on the benefits of cell service in the US.
    1) CDMA are pretty locked to a carrier. Cons: Only useful for that carrier, device has to be swapped online/phone. Pros: Device can be swapped online/phone remotely! And, insurance/repair policy on CDMA phones is super flexible since all have been registered before..
    2) Device subsidizing sometimes overtakes paying for phone. Example: Sprint iPhone 5c (SRP $550) on-contract costs $0, at $70x20months EverythingPlus Unlimted My Way plan (unlmtd talk, text, data) for first line. Nothing else compares to it. Cancelling service early charges you $350-20 per month. Benefits? Well, on TMobiles comparable Simple Choice plan, which is $80+The phone, it is just alot more. Let's say you buy it in payments or all at once, it doesn't matter, the money is paid. Over the next two years, $550+(80x24)= $2470 on T-Mobile, 4th largest carrier.
    Sprint? $70x20= $1400, 3rd largest carrier.
    Subsidizing a device generates a termination fee of about $350. To manufacture the Iphone 5c, it costs about $100, if that? Suggested Retail Price is $550. So an ETF is somewhere in the middle, to help Sprint/VZE/AT&T recover some money if the contract customer cancels early. Thus, a more valuable customer is a contract customer. This whole fad of buying phones at full price is not a blessing, more of a different kind of poison, that hurts harder, but this time you choose it versus just passively tolerating it.
  • True, unless you choose to buy a used phone, for example the Lumia 925. If this is done it would benefit you to be off contract for a lower price, since this phone is attainable for around $100 and below. Also, this principal would apply to any low priced phone.
  • I'll stick with my HTC One M8 for windows on T-mobile thank you very much.
  • Funny thing is that Sprint is larger than TMo on every turn. On LTE they are tiny bit ahead, but here is a secret: Sprint's 3G map is enormous, closer to VZW and AT&T. And one more thing: CDMA Always has better stability, especially in calls. And always has better insurance policies, thanks to all having been registered. Sprint is also cheaper than TMo ($60 for unlimited line). I really do not know how TMo has survived, were it not for Legere's pseudo-costumer friendliness.
  • It's tempting, since it would probably be the most I would get for my unsupported Lumia 810; but it's hard to beat the unlimited talk/text/data for four lines for $110 I'm getting now with T-Mo.
  • Dude, throttling is not unlimited...haha. Simple Choice promo with 2.5 GB/line, calling 3G/4G High-Speed ? ...not the same. 2G is useless.
  • In the town i live in Sprint is the second best choice coverage wise. Tmobile is nonexistent here and i live on the northern edge of a huge Verizon dead zone. As tempting as this offermight be to some At&t is better and worth it even if it is more expensive.
  • too bad sprints data speeds are crap compaired to t-mobile