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 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 (the old one), and got a Tesla because it was the biggest gadget he could find. You can follow him on Twitter at @derekakessler.

132 Comments
  • I would rather talk through tin cans than Sprints network, but hey that's just me.
  • Sprint was like tin cans for me. Voice worked, but moving data was quite slow between the ends.
  • The voice quality stunk always had to ask people to say that again. Different story with gsm networks. How's Verizon sound? Being their CDMA also? Posted via the Android Central App
  • I had Verizon for 2 years. Verizon's call quality in my area was great. Problem was the 4G LTE service. was constantly in 3G even though sales reps advertised us being in a full 4G area. Their 3G service was slow and they price for service was outrageous. I was paying $180 after taxes for two lines of service with unlimited talk, text and 4gb's of data.
  • Yep.. This.. Posted via Android Central App
  • You're an idiot.
  • Says the Grinch Zenwatch rhymes with Winwatch. Coincidence? I think not.
  • I wouldnt use Sprint's coverage map either. Accurate band 41, understated on voice, and really exaggerated on LTE. The map is just to inaccurate and needs to be redone.
  • There's going to be a shitstorm in the comments. I guarantee it. Posted via the Android Central App
  • What, on a post about Sprint and T-Mobile being pitted against each other? This is going to be totally civil, what are you talking about?
  • Yeah this is gonna end very well I am sure Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Meanwhile, I'll continue to enjoy living in a city where all four major carriers have really good service. ...although no one but AT&T has a signal that penetrates into most of my house.
  • Same here. AT&T is the only one that has great coverage for the area's I travel to and around my house.
  • I am lucky sprint is great for me. I get Verizon speeds at half the cost. Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Plus Infinity. From my Sprint SPARK Galaxy Note 4. Galaxy Note 4 Galaxy S III
    LG G2
    If it ain't Tech, it ain't Right.
  • Same here. About 2 years ago, Sprints network speeds here were crap. Now I pull between 10-18 mps down and about 7-10 up. This is just the Sparkless LTE but unlimited makes it worth it. Plenty fast enough for me. Posted via AC App from my S4 mini WITH an LED CrackLight ;-)
  • I have 3 out of 4. Tmo doesn't feel the need to do anything in Harrisburg. Downtown is pretty decent but two miles from the Capitol building it is dialup Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Yeah. I drove from Philly to Pittsburgh and back a few weeks ago, and T-Mo was pretty much bare-bones HSPA once you get out of the western suburbs of Philly until you get to Greensburg. It was good enough for Hangouts voice calls and streaming via BeyondPod the whole way, but T-Mo has *got* to improve this, at the very least in secondary metro areas and along major highways.
  • I clicked this article ONLY for the comments.
  • The fact that on the new great SPARK network you can't do anything while on a phone call like receive mms or get on the Internet unless on wifi no one wants to go to sprint from any carrier... Posted via Android Central App
  • From T-Mobile to Sprint...?? Really??? I could just say LOL!!!! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Haha...precisely! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Exactly. I wouldn't be on T-mobile in the first place. i like to actually be able to use my cellphone,
  • NNNN OOO...WWAAAY!!!!!! NOT Happening with me No Way, PERIOD..... Posted via Android Central App
  • Plus no Moto X? No thanks!
  • I had a 2014 Moto X and it really wasn't anything to write home about. Meh battery, meh camera, it was hard to grip, no dev support. The Nexus 5 is a better option for the price imo. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I had a Moto X 2014 for a week and i was happy with it. no problems on my end
  • SPRINT FTW! Tmobile is ultra over rated! Just ask deutsche telekom
  • Yes they are! Posted via the Android Central App
  • If you get T-Mobile service you sure as hell get better sprint service. Posted via the Android Central App
  • They're pretty evenly matched here in metro Philly. T-Mo's LTE is a little faster here, but they're both well past the point of diminishing returns in terms of network speed.
  • Verizon is King in Philadelphia. The only place I would say I have issues is downtown. I was at Broad and Callowhill the other day and had 3G service only. I get great service in the Far Northeast. I'm the kind of guy that stops a microwave at 1 second to feel like a bomb defuser.
  • @wezi - When I was there T-Mobile was just fine. Actually even Root Metrics says T-Mobile and Verizon are tied in Philadelphia. http://www.rootmetrics.com/us/rsr/philadelphia-pa
  • I think T-Mobile is fine in the Philly area. I'm not bashing them. I plan on staying with Verizon until they force me off of the unlimited plan that I'm on, then I'll switch to T-Mobile. I'm the kind of guy that stops a microwave at 1 second to feel like a bomb defuser.
  • Another Verizon unlimited grandfathered data user. No harm or disrespect, but your words don't mean much here. Galaxy Note 4 Galaxy S III
    LG G2
    If it ain't Tech, it ain't Right.
  • Why? I'm the kind of guy that stops a microwave at 1 second to feel like a bomb defuser.
  • Not that I agree with it, since I am, like you, one of the lucky members of the Verizon Unlimited Data Club. However, I can understand his reasoning. You and I see Verizon as a carrier with a superior network that allows us to freely use and benefit from using 4G Data unthrottled. I am happy with their pricing for the value I receive every month. However, those not lucky enough to have unlimited data can see Verizon as draconian, with policies that are not as consumer friendly as those of other carriers. They may also see Verizon as too expensive when they charge for each individual gigabyte. I'll admit that I have been happy with Verizon for the 5 years I've had them. I've never had any major billing or service issues. However, I also would be more inclined to cut them some slack, since I know what a valuable commodity I have with unlimited data on one of the top networks in the country. I have an older plan and probably pay less for my plan than many of those that have unlimited data on Sprint or TMO, so I know I'll continue to stay with Big Red, even if they may do something to upset me in the future. To use another example, I've had Sprint for about 3 weeks and recognize their network is not nearly as good as Big Red's. However, Sprint allowed me to finance a top-tier phone interest free (Nexus 6) and gave me an Unlimited Talk/Text 2 GB with Mobile Hotspot plan for less than the cost of some prepaid carriers--$30 per month. I like Sprint and feel that I am getting a pretty good deal for the money I pay. However, my high praise of Sprint may not be representative of most people, since part of my praise is because they gave me a deal that isn't available to most people. Just like` `when Verizon allows me to use unlimited, unthrottled, data each month.
  • I still had t-mobile when I went down to philly in October and t-mobile was ok except for a few spots . I was in east philly the whole time
  • Yeah, Verizon seemed to suffer from bad congestion in Philly when I had them. Granted, that was back in 2011-12. Of the services I've used in Philly (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mo), AT&T's was by far the best in terms of signal. T-Mo's a better value for me now, though.
  • Center City is usually an issue, I'm rarely down there so I don't have those issues. I'm the kind of guy that stops a microwave at 1 second to feel like a bomb defuser.
  • In Holts on Walnut St. inside the smoking lounge TMO drops off, on the street no problems. Same goes for being inside Perlman Center at UPenn, no service from TMO, or edge at the most. No problems with my AT&T phone.
  • Kinda like Sanchez and Foles.
  • Yeah same thing here in Chicago. Both Sprint and T-Mo are about the same. Good until you get downtown or go into a large building then both crap out.
  • I've actually had great luck with T-Mo in downtown Chicago. The hotel where I stay when I'm in town is in Gold Coast, and I work at Lurie Children's, and I usually see at least 30Mbps down.
  • In the Midwest Sprint's Coverage is 10x Better than T-mo which drops everywhere, worse than ATT, and VZW is the gold standard for coverage here. If I had to Leave VZW it would be Sprint here in the Midwest.
  • This statement is not even close to true. I had Sprint for 13 years... in hindsight I'm not sure why because their data service where I live is garbage. Sprint had nothing but unusably slow 3G service in our area up until last year and even then there were only like three, "4G" towers... and I have to say "4G" that because two were LTE and one was still WiMax. I couldn't use my phones for anything anywhere unless I was on WiFi. because even when I did have good signal strength the latency on their network was insane. Now With T-mo I actually have fast usable LTE service pretty much everywhere in this area. It's not even close to comparable.
  • i would do it if they were gsm cdma is so 1980
  • Yea. CDMA is killing Verizon. LTE has more in common with CDMA than GSM.
  • Yeah, like the SIM card it uses....oh...wait...
  • And what was GSM born out of? Oh yeah, cdma Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • So? 3g GSM is CDMA. Actually it is wcdma but let's not pick nits. Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • All carriers have GSM built into them. Verizon uses a mixture of CDMA technology for their calling and GSM for the 4G LTE service. Tmobile is strictly GSM. Same with AT&T. Even Sprint uses GSM. Sprint uses the CDMA network for the purpose of cellular calling and 3G services and the sim card in the back of the phone follow GSM and 4G LTE data.
  • GSM is actually older than what Verizon and Sprint use for their 'slow' data. and propagation of 800mhz EVDO on Sprint is ridiculous.
  • Wyld....actually gsm can handle network traffic that CDMA cant....before gsm was TDMA. .......CODE DIVISIONAL MULTI ACCESS -CDMA didn't allow as many consecutive users as TIME DIVISIONAL MULTI ACCESS -TDMA allowed more consecutive users and was more reliable. The TDMA was replaced with gsm so that a person visiting the usa or a us citizen visiting a foreign country could use thier same phone . More universal. Posted via the Android Central App
  • TDMA was rolled into GSM, it didn't replace it. GSM BECAME better, it wasn't better for several years. Seriously, it's a pointless discussion though as Verizon and Sprint made the switch in 1996, you're talking technology that's over 2 decades old. LTE is the new standard and every carrier is using it.
  • Na, I'm good... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Be extremely careful of Sprint deals. Started having service issues after 14 day return period. Cancelled account, went back to prior service. Got stuck will cost of 2 new phones, cancellation fee, plus early termination fee from old carrier. It was a very expensive trip into and out of Sprint service. Buyer beware!
  • this is something that happens on all carriers, not just Sprint. don't blame Sprint for your inability to read terms and conditions.
  • So Terms and Conditions tell you about future service issues, right when you're stuck with them? Sweet! Carriers are so polite nowadays. Posted via the Android Central App
  • you're describing a problem not exclusive to Sprint. Verizon is oversold in many areas and is facing the exact same issues of network congestion. AT&T is oversold where I live and Sprint does just fine, it comes with the lack of foresight involved in signing a 2 year contract. Sprint still offers contracts, but is also offering contract-free. Next time, don't sign a contract.
  • So the trick is to change carriers when your normal contract is finished and bringing your own phone or fully paying for an out of contract phone... then you shouldn't get hit with any fees at all... not even cancellation fees.
  • shocking : people who sign contracts hate the terms and conditions of contracts. every carrier now offers contract-free. no one should even consider signing a contract at this point, there is no benefit to locking yourself in for several years.
  • Three months ago, I switched from Sprint to TMO, after 9 years with Sprint. My main reason for switching: poor service. With Sprint, I was constantly dropping calls and losing network connection. I was paying a lot of money, but not getting satisfactory service. Since the switch, I've been extremely happy with TMO. And NO CONTRACT! My JUMP program offers me anytime upgrades, Lookout Premium Security, and insurance; all for $10/month. And, when I switched to TMO, I was able to trade in my Note 3 (for a Note 4) . Since I had already fulfilled my Sprint contract, there was no payoff for switching...but there would have been, up to $350, if I was still on Sprint contract. I say, make sure you have the service you want before switching. What good is a deal, if it doesn't give you good service?
  • You actually like Lookout? I've rooted phones to get that defication off.
  • That's nice for you. I sell T-mobile as well as VZW and AT&T. I can't keep a T-mobile phone sold for the life me. i have stopped offering T-Mobile for new accounts. Only upgrades. Horrible signals with dropped calls all the time.
  • Ha ha Sprint's gettin desperate, too little too late Posted via Android Central App
  • Are TMo's "Uncarrier" moves desperation? Sorry. Deutsche Telekom already answered that. Yes.
  • No
  • Extremely desperate. T-Mobile is practically giving away their service to get customers. Posted via the Android Central App
  • @moon - likewise for Sprint!
  • You're right. Posted via the Android Central App
  • no, see it's totally different, because T-Mobile's CEO swears and totally gets me. it's like were best friends. -_-
  • They're absolutely desperate moves, but they also seem to be working. They have a LONG way to go, but they're at least in a position now where it no longer looks like their only way to remain viable is to be bought out or to merge with another carrier, and that's more than I could say for them a year and a half ago. Hopefully they can keep this up for long enough that they can secure big-time funding again. That's going to be necessary before they can do any significant network upgrades in non-urban markets, which they *must* do.
  • Sprint is still ahead of t-slo in many, many categories Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Nonexus....and then you woke up and realized that you were dreaming Posted via the Android Central App
  • Ok... Lol Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Lol Posted via the Android Central App
  • why do T-Mobile fanboys refuse to admit Spark exists?
  • If that is the case then why is it that Sprint still has the slowest and worst Network? T-Mobile is installing towers daily, their Network gets better every day, their speeds are fast as hell. Yep that Sprint Network just does nothing but tell stories.
  • RootMetrics shows Sprint network improving in many cities by substantial margins. Your argument about Sprint not investing in its network is untrue.
  • Root metrics has sprint scoring the lowest in every category in every city they do a test in, so nope, your the tool Posted via the Android Central App
  • You seems to have a slight bias, show a recent link Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • http://www.cio.com/article/2846189/wireless-carriers/verizon-is-tops-us-...
  • droidfan2014, First, I said the network improved by substantial margins. That does not translate into being #1 in all categories, which TMo is not. It shows improvement, which means the result of Sprint investing in its network. Now, that doesn't mean it's #1 in some or many categories. It's easy to discover. Just go to RootMetrics, go to Sprint's best overall scoring cities, click the city and read the report. It's not rocket science. Let me help you get started. Here are the carrier results... (click the Sprint tab about mid-page)
    http://www.rootmetrics.com/us/blog/special-reports/where-does-your-carri... http://www.fiercewireless.com/tech/offer/gc_rootmetrics?sourceform=Organ...
    http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20141205005038/en/Sprint-Jointly-A...
  • Now why would i do that lol.
  • Sprint is for suckers. Posted via Android Central App
  • So is the Cubs. Posted via the Android Central App
  • So are I'm the kind of guy that stops a microwave at 1 second to feel like a bomb defuser.
  • Actually, "so is" is technically correct... it's a collective noun. Suckers have so few victories, so let him have this one.
  • Says the Cub fan. Posted via the Android Central App
  • A Cubs fan talking about victories. Now I've seen everything.
  • Such brilliant wit. I'm in awe. Never heard that one before.
  • Move from T-Mobile to Sprint is about location
    Yes I did it.
    Why, T-Mobile is unreliable in my area, I get a lot of missed calls
    While Sprint is slow, I get voice and data (slow) where I go.
  • Had sprint for 12 years left the for at&t left them for tmobile... Best move I made Posted via the Android Central App
  • Would rather use smoke signals than use sprint Posted via the Android Central App
  • lmao!
  • Only if they bring back Nextel...
  • Nextel was the shittiest, unupgradeable network ever invented. TDMA??? You kidding me??? The frequency it was on is GREAT, right on par at 850 as the 700 spectrum out there, but they haven't bothered starting to refarm it in every market yet because their vendors for network installs are non-existant.
  • Was only taking the piss, mate.
  • http://i.imgur.com/fB19z.gif
  • For the past few years I have been with Sprint reluctantly and had slow speeds and poor coverage. Now that I get LTE everywhere and decent speeds I have a phone (Nexus 6) that sends duplicate texts to people and probably misses phone calls due to bugs. I just can't win. I stick with them because my employer has a contract with them for an in house antenna so my phone gets service in the basement where I spend my days.
  • T mobile has free in home antenna things. I got one for free. Also WiFi calling is great. I'm on metro pcs now due to lower cost same service. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I was a 15+ year Sprint customer and left them after OVER A YEAR of endless missed and never ending duplicate text messages and network configuration problems. They simply could not fix their network. One year on T-Mobile now, have never had a SINGLE missed, delayed, out of order, or duplicate text message. Not one.
  • I think T-mobile gives you a lot for your money.. When you look at their plans, they have so many features added in the plan for one low price. I love that about T-Mobile! Luckily I get great coverage in my area so I'm a happy camper! Posted via HTC One M8 and Android Central App
  • It really depends on your location. Yes I have sprint and I live in atlanta and I don't even know the last time either of my devices has displayed a 3g signal. I get lte everywhere on all bands and speeds are always above average and voice quality is superb.
  • Do you have band 26 in your area? Posted via the Android Central App
  • I've never had sprint but virgin mobile and their 3g sucked .3mb/s now on T-Mobile with an lg g3 d850 (at&t) and I get 12mb/s on hspa+ Posted via the Android Central App
  • Well, they gotta do something, Softbank isn't doing anything but telling them to cut jobs to make ends meet. I haven't been employed by Sprint in almost a year now and am much happier with a company that is putting their money where their mouth is. I feel sorry for the leftover techs still there getting abused by management and worried that the next round of layoffs will be the complete in house tech team.
  • Here come the parade of Magenta trolls.
  • What are you?
  • A person.
  • How about go for whatever works for you? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Don't say that here. You have to shit on at least 2 other carriers in these comments. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Bigdin, watch the language Posted via the Android Central App
  • Here in Houston one can usually get ~ 40-60Mbps LTE on T-Mobile. Considering T-Mobile also offers unlimited LTE data anyone here would have to be crazy to switch to Sprint. Posted via the Android Central App
  • It seems like T-Mobile's markets in the South are *super* fast. I was in Atlanta a couple months ago, and my LTE service there was better than anything I've ever seen on my home cable internet through Comcast. Houston, Dallas, and Miami weren't quite that fast, but well over 50Mbps in each. https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-noJ6YPE-FHM/VGEWVilOOYI/AAAAAAAAMfA/E...
  • We have 800 and 2500mhz going up where I live and 60+ mbps is typical on a full signal (and that's without optimization of the sites, were not officially a 'spark market' yet). Voice is great, texting is great, coverage is WAY better than I had on T-Mobile, it's CHEAPER than T-Mobile and I have unlimited data still. Bummer for people who don't have tri-band where they live, I can understand why they wouldn't like Sprint, but they're adding Spark markets every month. At the rate they're going, they're going to stop T-Mobile right in their tracks.
  • Speaking from experience the 2500 leftover Clearwire spectrum can't penetrate a wet paperbag, let alone a 3000 sq foot building on level ground. At least, not without standing at the front of the building with the door open.
  • I get B41 inside my house.
  • Thus there is Tri-Band, If you cant get B41 (2500Mhz), you will get B26 (800Mhz) or even B25 (1900Mhz). I live in a Spark area and easily get B41 at work and at home indoors and averaging 50+Mbps.
  • ...that's what the 800mhz is for.
  • Magicmittens....Tmobile is upgrading thier network faster than any other ever has. By the way, sprint does throttle your data, especially if you watch video, don't be stupid and say " no they dont", read the terms and conditions, they do say that your video speeds will in fact be slowed down or throttled Posted via the Android Central App
  • All carriers have terms and conditions about network throttling. I watch video every day on my sprint phone and never get throttled.
  • Find me the part in Sprint's terms and conditions that state they throttle videos to 3g speeds (you're referring to a statement made by Dan Hesse THREE YEARS AGO about their prepaid brands, on which they DO throttle video to 3g speeds). 4mbps is required for HD, I watch HD Netflix at work all day, which I guess is impossible. Typical Sprint hate, based entirely on anecdotal evidence from 2+ years ago.
  • I have B25 and B26 right now and my market should have Spark by the end of April or May, and that's just fine by me I love Sprint so I'm gonna stay. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Had Sprint for a lot of YEARS.... went to T MOBILE.... Had bad data service with Sprint T is a little better and cheaper price. Posted via Android Central App
  • I switch phones too often to be tethered to Sprint. I have T-Mobile unlimited and I use an unlock AT&T Lg G3 and a OnePlus. When I tire of those I can get another unlocked, ATT, TMobile or even a Verizon phone.
  • Sprint is great in Philadelphia and Delaware County... Near Eagles stadium I average 30 down 13 up Posted via the Android Central App
  • I switched to T-Mobile after 10+ years on Sprint. Same issues as everyone else. Found it to be a trade off. I get a wider coverage area with faster speeds but shit for customer service. For me, Sprints customer service was always great (in local store).
    I do like that I can bring my own phone to T-Mobile. My current fav is an unlocked gsm. No cdma. When Sprint offers a bring your own device option maybe I will give another look now that they seem to be doing a good job in the Chicago area as far as network speeds.
  • Still not worth it. At&t & Verizon are the better carriers. T-Mobile and Sprint may be cheaper, but you get what you pay for. They're shoddy. It'll get the job done, but if I'm paying over 100 dollars for multiple people, I better be getting the best service. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I WONDER IF SPRINT READS THESE COMMENTS??? Posted via Android Central App
  • I would rather blend glass, rocks, sand, rusty metal shrapnel, screws and nails, cayenne pepper, chilis, jalapeños together in a large block of cheese, dehydrate myself to the point of constipation, and then sh1t out the hard, point, burning turds then go back to Sprint... Posted via the Android Central App