Last week, there were reports that Apple might enter the prepaid market with the addition of Cricket Communications, America’s seventh largest wireless company. Cricket Communications has officially become the America’s first prepaid carrier to offer no-contract iPhones from 22 June 2012.
Cricket iPhones will be available with a $150 discount compared to Apple’s asking prices for unlocked devices. They will have unlimited everything month-to-month plans. A new rumor says that iPhone is about to go prepaid on Boost Mobile, too.
Citing a trusted source, Mark Hearn wrote for Techno Buffalo that the Irvine, California-headquartered carrier will start offering prepaid iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S “in early September”. That is the time when a next-generation iPhone (popularly known as iPhone 5) is expected to arrive.
It remains uncertain if the Sprint-powered MVNO will offer its popular $50 Month Unlimited plan with Shrinkage, which includes unlimited talk, text and web, which also rewards customers who pay their bill on time by reducing their monthly bill by $5 down to as low as $35 per month.
Boost Mobile’s parent company is Sprint Nextel. Thus, iPhones offered here will be Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) iPhones. Virgin Mobile is another Sprint’s prepaid property. Thus, you can expect the iPhone to land on that network as well.
With Cricket now confirmed and Boost Mobile rumored, Apple is clearly interested in entering the prepaid market. Going prepaid means you do not have to commit your soul to a two-year deal. Instead, users get to choose among month-to-month plans that are typically cheaper, even if offering less too in terms of voice minutes and data allowance.
Another major advantage of this deal is that one can stop paying for these plans at any moment, useful if you are cash-strapped or traveling abroad. The hardware also comes unlocked for use on other networks. This might be of interest to jailbreakers.
On the downside, if you use it, you will pay full or near-full unsubsidized price to get the device.
It will be interesting seeing how the iPhone competes in the prepaid market, which in the US is dominated by the Android handsets as they cover all price points, shapes and sizes.
Source: iDownload Blog