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T-Mobile expands its Simple Global data roaming to more countries

The carrier's customers can now take advantage of unlimited data and texting and 20-cents per minute phone calls across more countries.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere. CNET

Subscribers who use T-Mobile's Simple Global feature to travel to anywhere in Europe and South America no longer have to worry about roaming charges.

The carrier announced on Thursday that it has expanded its Simple Global feature to 20 new countries to support 145 countries altogether. That means postpaid subscribers of the plan get unlimited data and texting at no extra cost and flat-rate calls to mobile phones and landlines charged at 20 cents per minute when traveling to any of the supported countries.

Simple Global is actually a free feature included with T-Mobile's Simple Choice plans.

This is just the latest move by a carrier to broaden its appeal to consumers as the mobile industry battles for subscribers. T-Mobile has long used its free international data coverage as a key selling point -- something the other US carriers have been unable to fully match.

With the new additions, Simple Global now covers all of Europe and South America, as well as countries in North America and the Caribbean, the Asia-Pacific region and Africa and the Middle East. T-Mobile claims that Simple Global will now cover 90 percent of the trips abroad that Americans take each year. One new destination is the Bahamas, a spot that more than 2 million Americans visit every year, according to the carrier.

A list of all supported countries is available on T-Mobile's website.

In announcing the new countries, T-Mobile took the opportunity to bash its rival US carriers, criticizing Verizon for "jacking up their customers' rates as soon as they step across a border." The company also dinged AT&T and Sprint by posting a chart showing the cost among all four carriers of using your mobile phone for weekend trips in such places as London and Lisbon.

In spite of its usual tirade against the industry, T-Mobile does have a point.

Mobile phone customers who travel abroad for business or pleasure want the ability to make calls, surf the Web and send text messages without having to worry about exorbitant roaming charges. T-Mobile tries to ease the process by cutting out those expensive fees as long as you subscribe to its Simple Global or Mobile without Borders plan, the latter offering unlimited calling, texting and 4G LTE data among the US, Mexico and Canada.