SMS in Hangouts

Customers continue to have the option of requesting refunds for false charges

Update: The Vermont Attorney General indicates that both AT&T and Sprint have also signed on to block all premium SMS charges aside from donations, although the carriers have not released official statements on the matter.

Original story: T-Mobile published a support FAQ today indicating that the carrier will take a stronger stance against bogus premium SMS charges as soon as possible. Following a realization that large-scale actions by the entire wireless industry were not completely effective, T-Mobile has decided to cease all billing for premium SMS other than charitable and political donations.

Premium SMS, while having its legitimate purposes, is seemingly primarily used as a tool for scamming wireless customers into paying outrageous SMS rates to unwanted companies. Realizing that few cases of premium SMS — outside of charitable and political donations — were actually being used for legitimate reasons, T-Mobile has already halted business dealings with one of the largest premium SMS service providers.

Going forward, the carrier plans to stop all non-charitable and political premium SMS, and reiterates that customers will continue to have the option of requesting refunds for fraudulent premium SMS charges

Source: T-Mobile; Vermont Attorney General; Via: Engadget

There are 30 comments

Ry says:

Keep it up T-Mo!

Xader says:

Hmmm...Verizon is conspicuous in its absence

KTMKTM says:

I'm not surprised. They already gouge their customers' wallets so why not let others join in on the fun.

NoNexus says:

They are too busy snorting gold infused coke off of a supermodels ....

Ameshican says:

Hey! Give Verizon a break. They don't have time for petty things like it's customers getting scammed. It's not easy getting Verizon logos on home buttons you know.

hpham72 says:

Good on T-Mobile. I actually had them block all premium SMS, which caused me to stop getting texts from the likes of banks, Amazon and shipping companies as well, because I don't always look at my bill and I couldn't believe they were allowing these companies to charge my bill so easily. Maybe I can have them unblock that now?

flychinook says:

They should have the ability to only block Premium SMS, which will still allow free short-code sms to go through.

hmmm says:

I've never had a premium SMS. Though I have never texted any 4 digit code to any company out of fear this would happen. Nice to see them doing this.

Saneless says:

Sounds like a good plan, especially if they'll just keep open things like Red Cross etc. The rest of them can go screw.

ajpri says:

Is this like that "text tune to 12345 for ringtones? I hate those.

Posted via Android Central App on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 (Android 4.2.2)

Yep, those are the ones. It's worse than just accidentally texting those numbers. Sometimes, people signing up for phone service have gotten a number that was formerly used by someone who had signed up for one of these services, and the service simply continues to bill that number and its new owner through the carrier. And some services seem to just randomly start billing a number out of the blue, claiming the subscriber had signed up to get the messages when they had done no such thing.

Good move. All carriers should stop handling third-party billing for these things. While there may be legitimate premium SMS services, they seem few and far between. If they still want to operate, they can do signups via their own Web sites and bill customers via a credit card. Carrier billing is far too easy to abuse.

hpham72 says:


rudyy50 says:


Posted from my HTC One GPe via Android Central App

In the UK t mobile signal and connection is shit but this is why I stick with them

Posted via Android Central App

JereColin says:

They're not so hot in parts of the US either, but I like them as a company, too.

In many parts of the U.S.

Posted via Android Central App

ScottJ says:

The unimportant parts.

NoNexus says:

Yeah like most everywhere that isn't New York

Posted via Android Central App

Amir47 says:

yeah outside of the main cities

alexlam24 says:

Good guy T-Mobile

Posted via Android Central App

NoNexus says:

No one can debate that this is anything but good.

My only question is, what is the time limit? By the time you get a text on that network 3 months could have gone by.

Only kidding about the second paragraph

Posted via Android Central App

tech_head says:

If they want you to enroll in Premium SMS, give you a QR code and let you go to their website to set up billing.

I never use those services and have them blocked on all phones on my account.

flychinook says:


I take several calls a week for customers that get slammed with charges by these slimeball companies. I've been saying for a very long time that Premium SMS should be opt-out by default.

cgardnervt says:

Vermont made android central! :-P and +1!

Posted via Android Central App

zambalis says:

Looks like t mobile is becoming quite the peoples choice for wireless providers. Every where I read has them standing up for the people.

Posted via Android Central App

deibed says:

aaaw..T-Mobile's after my heart

kullkid92x says:

Breath of fresh air, as I had to deal with this nonsense just last week. Some damn company tried getting slick with my poor father who has a basic phone! saying he "clicked" on a game and therefor accepted all charges...

He doesn't even know how to use a PC -_- lol

Of course then poor Tmobile got the verbal abuse cause my dad saw it days later in the monthly paper bill, I can see how they and other carriers are sick of the customer complaints.

CrazeOKC says:

We got hit with one of these awhile back, didn't catch it for 6 mos because we have auto bill pay on everything and I rarely double check them (my fault) but still never signed up or texted any of those numbers. VZW removed all 6 mos off of our bill.