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Prepaid Wireless Tracker, February 2011 - More Prepaid Smartphones!
February 01, 2011

Prepaid Wireless Tracker - February 2011 Issue


Prepaid wireless is a growing and truly exciting industry.  At Prepaid Wireless Guide I try to provide you with in-depth information that isn't readily available anywhere else.  Its content is original, and created from firsthand experience working in the prepaid wireless industry.

This monthly email provides you with a quick glance at what's in the news so that you can easily keep informed.  I believe in brief, to-the-point summaries/commentary so that you can move onto other tasks in your day.  Each snippet includes a link to the original story should you be interested in the full details.

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MetroPCS Finds Itself In Net Neutrality Debate
In an attempt to offer a low cost 4G data plan on its handsets, MetroPCS finds itself under fire for violating impending net neutrality laws.  The spirit of its tiered pricing is that it can control data costs by limiting access to high bandwidth sites.  Customers can buy up to gain more access.  Ultimately, if MetroPCS loses, it will simply mean higher prices and fewer options for customers.

Amdocs/Ovum survey: Major shift in thinking about prepaid charging underway
The spirit of the article is that carriers are starting to think of prepaid wireless as just as important as postpaid, and need flexible platforms to bring new price plans to market in a reasonable time.  The irony is that Amdocs has a prepaid platform offering that is anything but flexible, and certainly not cheap.

MetroPCS Reports Q4 Sales Slump
RCR Wireless
While sales in this period in 2009 were much stronger, the company is still growing despite considerable competition in the prepaid space.  I think calling it a slump is a little dramatic, despite being a catchy headline!

Cricket's New Smartphones from Huawei and LG: Hands-On
PC Magazine
This article reveals a number of well priced, fully featured Android smartphones coming in 2011 from Cricket.  I think we can now officially say that prepaid smartphones are abundantly available, and selection in 2011 will only continue to rival postpaid offerings.  Check the site ( for a constantly updated list of prepaid smartphones as they become available.

Assurance Wireless Expands Phone Service into Washington Metro Area
As you can imagine, the addressable market for free cell phone service has been increasing given the difficult economy, and Virgin was more than happy to expand to Washington metro area.  Don’t be fooled; this is a valuable (i.e. lucrative) segment for those carriers offering the service!

Virgin Mobile's Free Service for CT's Needy
Hartford Business
Assurance Wireless comes to Connecticut!

Leap Wireless Strategy Paying Off
Wall Street Pit
Despite its price plan revamp in mid-2010 where it began including telecom taxes, this article focus mainly on the success Cricket has had with its Android smartphone portfolio.  You can certainly see a trend with this month’s e-zine in terms of smartphones really making significant inroads in the prepaid industry.

MetroPCS Sues LCD Firms
Dallas Business Journal
Claiming that LCD prices have been fixed, resulting in higher prices for carriers like MetroPCS, it files a lawsuit to set things right.  This isn’t the first time we’ve heard of this issue, including Samsung holding back its latest screen technology to use in its own smartphones instead of sharing the love with its competitors.  In the long run, customers should see the availability of lower cost, higher quality phones.

Leap Wireless: COO To Stay On As Consultant For 18 Months
Leap’s COO retires but continues on as a consultant for 18 months, earning $80K per month (no, that’s not a typo!) even if he leaves early.  I don’t know about you, but he’s no Steve Jobs, meaning that the company will be just the same with or without him.  I can’t imagine he’s worth that kind of money, essentially taking shareholder value right out of the stock via this frivolous expense.  Or is it just me?

Virgin Mobile Confirms February 1st Launch of Optimus V
I’ve tested the MetroPCS version of this phone (the LG Optimus M); it’s a great smartphone, particularly in this price range.  If you like Virgin’s plans, you’ll be happy to have this phone as an option!

What's New at

  • Updated Tablet PC Comparison page with all Samsung Galaxy Tab variants (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, US Cellular, Verizon)


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