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knew for awhile now (actually 1 year overdue!) that Virgin was going to
re-launch with something
off-the-wall, and that there would be some kind of iPhone related
offer. However, I never imagined Virgin would be going
with iPhones! You have to get your iPhone from an Apple store
directly from the Virgin Mobile website. If you activate
July 31st, you'll also get your first year of unlimited talk, text, and
data for $1 (for the year). Note that you're still
for taxes and other telecom fees, which are billed on a monthly basis.
Thereafter, you'll pay $50/month for the same plan if you
for autopay; otherwise it's $5 more.
I addition, you'll also get into their new "Inner
Circle" program, which is a partnership with the broader Virgin brand.
This includes discounts and special offers on certain Virgin
Atlantic flights, a free extra night at Virgin Hotels, and discounts on
Virgin Wines. It's a nice idea, however, these may be more
perceived value versus actual value, as most customers are unlikely to
truly benefit from these offers. Regardless, I can see where
Mobile is going with this. Their site was completely stripped
all of their previous plans and offers. They truly simplified
their business, and are trying hard to leverage the Virgin and Apple
brands. Note, however, that the Inner Circle benefits are
available to those who enroll by Sept 30th, pointing even more to
marketing blitz than real long term value.
Going exclusive was likely
the only way to get them into Apple stores, and no doubt they have a
multi-year agreement. I don't know how long that deal
is, however, it will take them several years to truly understand
this new business model is working. If not, I expect they'll
probably dump the Virgin brand altogether! Personally, I'm
shocked at the announcement. Going upstream with iPhones used
have a lot of merit, and iPhone users do tend to be more sticky.
However, that knowledge held true when customers were locked
with contracts, and iPhones weren't available across all carriers.
In addition, in recent years I have seen a lot of dedicated
fans actually moving to Android phones out of frustrations with phones
issues, and general lack of innovation, as well as decreased value
to similar and even more powerful Android phones.
think that given Apple's struggles as of late, it needs this as much as
Virgin does, which is kind of telling. A decade ago Apple
even want prepaid carriers activating iPhones! This will
certainly be VERY interesting to see unfold. I think they'll
an initial surge with the limited time $1 offer, however, I predict
that the multi-year outlook will be bleak. Every other
offers iPhones and Android smartphones with similar price plans (when
the initial promotion expires), so really what's their long term value
on a mission to enter as a valid competitor in the prepaid wireless
market, Verizon has increased its data allowances again. The
plan is up to 3GB from 2GB, the $50 plan is up to 7GB from 5GB, and the
10GB plan has decreased from $70 to $60. The $80 unlimited
plan is also still available. Mobile Hotspot and data
are also included. I can't remember the last time a carrier
many changes in such a short period of time, though I did predict that
at some point they would get serious about prepaid and make a number of
changes to catch up.
has updated its My Verizon app to give prepaid users some love.
The app will allow prepaid customers to make payments,
usage, add additional data, change plans, as well as setup automatic
payments. Providing prepaid users with a good customer
to manage their account, and to pay Verizon for services...hmm... Not
exactly revolutionary, but does add another notch to Verizon's efforts
to finally take the prepaid segment seriously, rather than continue to
treat it like a 3rd class citizen!
further its commitment to prepaid, Verizon is offering this fantastic
deal. At $70, the Moto E4 really is packed with features.
Even at its original price of $129 it's a good deal; at $70
practically a steal! You get a smartphone in the very high
mid-tier, with a 1.4GHz quad-core processor, 5" HD display, 2GB of RAM,
16GB of internal storage, 8MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, and
expandable microSD card slot. It also comes with the latest
version of Android, is nano-coated for water resistance, and has a
fingerprint scanner. If you're considering Verizon prepaid,
is an offer that's definitely worth considering!
Sprint is still playing around with prepaid under its own brand.
Fortunately, this is actually a decent offer, although it's
limited to only a handful of low end smartphones that can be activated.
Under their "Sprint Forward" prepaid plans, you'll find one
$40 for unlimited talk and text, and 4GB of data, and a $60 unlimited
data plan. Note that these prices are AFTER a $5 monthly
for signing up for autopay. It would appear as though Sprint
still can't figure out how to productively implement a prepaid
strategy. At least customers have plenty of high value
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