THE BLOG
09/08/2010 08:24 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

T-Mobile Helps Families with "Kids Are Free" Plan

As our families continue grow and the demand on our time increases exponentially -- staying in touch becomes more essential. Between baseball games, doctor appointments and cooking dinner - staying in touch especially in an emergency has become a fundamental part of our daily lives.  According to Pew Internet & American Life Project -- 82% of American adults own a cell phone and 75% of American teens own a cell phone.

The mobile phone has become the favored communication hub for the majority of American teens.

-Pew

As cell phone ownership increases amongst teens - families are trying to cut costs and not add another monthly bill. With so many choices in cell phones and network operators - how does a family decide on what is the best plan and phone for their busy lifestyle but still stay within budget? T-Mobile understands those concerns and attempts to make those choices as simple as possible. Today, Magenta has gone a step further and announced a new promotion - T-Mobile"s Kids Are Free.

Here is the full press release from T-Mobile:

T-Mobile's Kids Are Free Promotion Will Keep Families Connected More Affordably

T-Mobile Makes It Easier Than Ever to Stay Connected With Free Add-a-Line Service on New Family Plans

BELLEVUE, Wash. -- Sept. 8, 2010 -- Continuing its efforts to give families the freedom to stay connected on their terms, T-Mobile USA, Inc. today announced a new promotional offer called Kids Are Free to make family communication easy and more budget friendly. With Kids Are Free, new and existing T-Mobile customers who sign up for a qualifying family plan through Nov. 2, 2010, receive free add-a-line service on up to three lines of their plan until 2012.1

Families are busier than ever. Between soccer practice, school, time with friends and work, families are always on the go, and mobile phones provide a vital line of communication for them. According to a study published in April 2010 by the Pew Research Center, 75 percent of children ages 12 to 17 now have a cell phone.2 That said, it can be a struggle for parents to balance the family budget in order to keep the whole family in touch while on the go.

"Not only is T-Mobile offering the most flexible and affordable family plans among national carriers today, we are also making it more affordable than ever for families to add their kids or other family members by eliminating the associated monthly service fee until 2012," said Ashley White, marketing director of value offers at T-Mobile USA. "The up-front cost of purchasing new phones and dealing with monthly service fees for an entire family can add up quickly, so this promotion is designed to make it easier for families."

The Kids are Free promotion is the latest effort from T-Mobile to ensure families are united with compelling and affordable mobile services. Additional family-friendly offers this fall include the following:
  • Special deals on the latest devices. Starting today customers who purchase a Samsung Vibrant receive a second Samsung Vibrant for free after a $50 mail-in rebate with a two-year service agreement. Also, T-Mobile's new line of messaging phones are all under $75 after a mail-in rebate with a two-year service agreement. Adding unlimited texting for the whole family is just $20 per month.
  • T-Mobile's Even More® and no annual contract Even More Plus® family plans offer customers affordable options for their family's wireless communication.  T-Mobile's Even More family plans start at $59.99 per month and T-Mobile's Even More Plus family plans start at just $49.99 per month.
  • T-Mobile's Family Allowances service lets parents set up-front monthly allowances for their family's phone usage -- minutes, messages, and downloads.
More information about T-Mobile's Kids Are Free offer is available at http://www.t-mobile.com.

1 Offer expires Nov. 2, 2010; applies to voice and messaging on up to three lines added to qualifying two-line family plans. Taxes, fees (including $1.41 regulatory programs fee, $35 activation fee, and up to $200 early termination fee for two-year contracts) and other services additional. After Dec. 31, 2011, regular pricing applies.

2 Pew Research Center: Teens and Mobile Phones, United States; by Amanda Lenhart, Rich Ling, Scott Campbell, Kristen Purcell; April 2010.

During my phone interview with T-Mobile - the team brought to my attention T-Mobile's Family Allowances. This is a service that the company is very proud of and I can understand why. Family Allowances permits parents to introduce their children to cell phone responsibility. The service is $4.99 per month and gives parents oversight of their child's cell phone usage. With T-Mobile's Family Allowances parents can easily:
  • Set limits on the times of day when the phone may be used.
  • Avoid surprise bills by managing their child's allowance of minutes, messages and downloads via a phone or a simple Web-based interface.
  • Set limits on who can/can't call or send text messages to the phone.
  • Stay connected with their kids worry free with "always allowed numbers."
I believe that this is simply a great service. This is especially true for those families who are looking to introduce their children to cell phones.