Metro was established in 1994 as General Wireless, Inc., by Roger D. Linquist and Malcolm Lorang. PCS referred to the industry term, Personal Communications Service. Its service was first launched in 2002.
As of February 2005, MetroPCS had about 1.5 million subscribers in the country. At the time, the company operated through 21 licenses in Greater Miami, Tampa, Sarasota, San Francisco, Atlanta and Sacramento. The company expanded to the Dallas and Detroit areas later that year.
On April 19, 2007, MetroPCS made its stock market debut. Its 50 million shares initial public offering (IPO) closed at $27.40 and creating a market cap of $8 billion.
In October 2012, the company, known then as MetroPCS, reached an agreement to merge with T-Mobile USA. A reverse merger for MetroPCS, the deal closed on May 1, 2013. The combined company, now known as T-Mobile US, began trading on the New York Stock Exchange. On June 21, 2015, the legacy MetroPCS CDMA network was decommissioned, and customers were migrated to the company's LTE network.
At the time of the merger, T-Mobile had about 32 million subscribers, to which MetroPCS added around 9 million.
In 2012, there was a series of armed robberies in Metro stores which was attributed to low security measures. In the same year, T-Mobile and Metro became some of the earliest companies to offer unlimited data plans.
On September 24, 2018, T-Mobile announced that it would re-launch the brand as Metro by T-Mobile, introducing new unlimited plans offering bundled features such as Amazon Prime subscriptions and Google One storage, and announcing that the brand aims to be the first prepaid mobile carrier to offer 5G in 2019. T-Mobile stated that these changes would help to reduce the negative stigmas associated with MetroPCS's prepaid services, by aligning them with other well-known brands as value-added services, and placing a larger emphasis on its use of T-Mobile's network. The renamed carrier launched in early October 2018. At the time of the name change, T-Mobile's subscriber number had increased to around 75 million and Metro's had doubled to around 18 million users and had increased their nationwide market reach from around 12 to 100 markets.