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T-Mobile Drops Support for Federal Lifeline Program

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Fierce Wireless reported that T-Mobile plans to discontinue its support for the Federal Lifeline phone program by the end of 2014. T-Mobile has been a designated Lifeline service provider since 2012 but currently only services 400 customers. In a lengthy statement, T-Mobile asserted that they were not the only provider for the Lifeline program in those areas, and that customers would not be effected by this shift.

Through the federal lifeline program, low-income Americans can quality to receive a free or discounted prepaid phone through various supported carriers, ensuring that they are able to contact family members, emergency services and jobs. Lifeline is part of the Universal Service Fund. Consumers may only receive one phone per household and until 2012, the program only covered landlines.

This seems to be something of a trend as Cricket announced earlier this year that they also intend to end their Lifeline support program by the end of 2015.