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[Updated With Video] T-Mobile’s Ad Star Drops Dress for Get Tough-Biker Leather; Wireless Competition is Back

Phillip Dampier April 16, 2012 Broadband Speed, Competition, Consumer News, T-Mobile, Video, Wireless Broadband 1 Comment

She's back and wants to "set the record straight."

T-Mobile’s familiar ad star is dropping her polka dot dresses  for some get-tough biker leather in a new series of commercials for the wireless carrier.

Canadian actress-model Carly Foulkes has appeared in “approachable”-wear designed by Debra LeClair since 2010, mostly chiding competitors like AT&T for tricky fees and “gotchas” that T-Mobile doesn’t charge. Typically amused by the antics of other wireless carriers, she promised relief for customers switching to T-Mobile’s value-oriented wireless plans.

Nearly a year after the failed merger-buyout by AT&T was first announced, T-Mobile this week unveils a “brand refresh” that promises wireless customers it is back in the fight for their business.  Traditionally, T-Mobile has positioned itself as a low-cost, value-oriented provider.  Often, the company’s service plans and pricing have forced other wireless carriers to follow suit.  AT&T’s buyout of T-Mobile would have eliminated that aggressive pricing.

T-Mobile will spend millions on the new ad campaign.

In the first ad in the series, Foulkes metaphorically tears up T-Mobile’s image over the past year, perceived as supine as the company waited to be absorbed into AT&T’s empire.  Ripping through her closet, Foulkes emerges in black leather and hops on board a motorcycle, demanding that visitors test-drive T-Mobile’s 4G network speeds against AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon.

Before her biker phase

T-Mobile’s year-long courting by AT&T cost the company plenty.

At last 802,000 contract customers fled T-Mobile for the competition, many for Sprint and Verizon, some only to avoid dealing with AT&T.

Others left because T-Mobile is the last major carrier still not offering Apple’s popular iPhone.  

The company promises to invest at least $200 million in advertising its comeback and is keeping Foulkes front and center.  In fact, outside of Verizon’s “Can You Hear Me Now” campaign which ran for a decade, ending last April, no spokescharacter has proved as recognizable as Foulkes.

The motorcycle theme will focus viewers on T-Mobile’s 4G network speeds.  Customers perceived that T-Mobile stopped upgrading and expanding its network while it pursued a merger with AT&T.

T-Mobile continues to claim it operates the nation’s largest 4G network, operating with HSPA+ technology.

T-Mobile’s “4G” network does deliver speed improvements over 3G, but some have dubbed HSPA+ “3.5G,” because resulting speeds usually cannot compete with 4G LTE technology.

T-Mobile plans to spend $1.4 billion to build its own LTE network to launch in 2013.

http://www.phillipdampier.com/video/T-Mobile Relaunch Ad.flv

T-Mobile’s “brand refresh” starts with this ad, “No More Mr. Nice Girl.”  (1 minute)

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  • Scott: Perfectly example of why I still don't subscribe to cable or satellite. The only channel I *might* watch out of that entire lineup is Comedy Central....
  • James Cieloha: CableOne, Service Electric, GCI, Buckeye and other NCTC members are being forced by Viacom to add the Epix movie channels in order to carry the cable ...
  • Dave Hancock: I don't know where AP lives, but in MOST areas of the country MOST people do not have any choice for High Speed Internet (15mbps or above) - it is the...
  • tacitus: That doesn't sound right. Are you in some sort of contract? Where in the country is this?...
  • AP: Good luck cutting cable if you live in an area that has one cable, internet, and phone company like I do. If you want internet or phone with the cable...
  • Dave Hancock: Soon the rest of the cable companies will follow Verizon's lead and start limiting the input bandwidth to their systems (ex: Netflix) to discourage su...
  • Milan in Austin: Cable TV is an obsolete product! I suggest everyone seriously consider dropping cable television. I cut the cord in August of 2013, and don't miss ca...
  • gsuburban: I have to agree that Verizon is not interested in providing its customers with a "clear pipe" due to the politics of peer-to-peer data sharing or what...
  • Scott: Not good, that takes away all your leverage in the situation. If you're holding the money you can work through the BBB or try and negotiate with the ...
  • Hudson Mohawk Press: We knew it couldn't last forever. Starting this month Time Warner Cable of NYC is charging Earthlink Internet customers a $5.99 modem lease fee. The w...
  • Eric: Frontier still sucks..Their service still sucks..they are still a ripofff...
  • punki: Thanks Scott, unfortunately mine is already paid......

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