Wednesday, March 05, 2014

T-Mobile BlackBerry trade-in promotion successful, but not for BB: 94 percent switch to another platform

Today, March 5, the controversial T-Mobile BlackBerry trade-in offer ends. That couldn't come soon enough for the embattled company, as TMONews reports that, thus far, 94 percent of those responding to the promotion opted out of the company's devices.

It was already known that the promotion led to 15 times the normal amount of BlackBerrys being traded in. What wasn't known until now was how many customers opted out of BB and into different platforms.

An internal T-Mobile USA memo gives the dire details for BlackBerry. According to the field sales news update, 94 percent of all the people trading in their BlackBerry phones switched to non-BlackBerry devices. We don’t have a specific figure of how many customers that was, but we do know that the promotion was – according to our sources – “very successful“.

Considering BB's market share vs. Android, and iOS, the results shouldn't surprise anyone. However, the offer -- once revealed -- turned into a contentious exchange between T-Mobile and BlackBerry (and BB fans, too). Originally, the “great offer” for BlackBerry users was that those who traded in an old BB device would get a $200 credit toward an iPhone. Not only did BlackBerry fans blast T-Mobile on social media, BB's new CEO John Chen did so as well, in a blog post.

To "make up" to the disgruntled BB, T-Mobile altered the offer, offering $200 toward the purchase of any current smartphone, along with an extra $50 off if the upgrade was to a BB Z10 or Q10.

What's interesting is that in his post, Chen reminded T-Mobile of the two companies' successful partnership in the past. What he left out, obviously, is the "What have you done for me lately" aspect of things, with BB's market share and future prospects continuing to sink.

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