Boost Mobile is to begin prepaid iPhone sales during the third quarter of 2013, according to information leaked on Twitter. Boost would become the third prepaid provider to offer Apple’s popular device, following its introduction to Cricket and Virgin Mobile in 2012.
Over the last few weeks, T-Mobile has stolen a lot of the prepaid carriers’ thunder with its new “Uncarrier” plans. But Cricket Wireless is eager to make sure no one forgets about it.
Starting today, Cricket Wireless is cutting the price of its iPhone plans to help it compete against the likes of T-Mobile and AT&T. The new family bundle plan offered by Cricket includes two smartphone plans for $40 each a month. If you just want an iPhone on your own plan, individual plans now start at $50 a month.
Hey, T-Mobile is finally an iPhone carrier now! Not only that, they’re a pretty competitive one, offering you an iPhone 5 for just $100 down and $20 a month over 24 months in what the nation’s fourth-largest carrier is calling a “no bullshit” plan. If you buy an iPhone 5 at T-Mobile, you can leave at any time as long as you pay off your device; otherwise, your service is provided month by month.
Sounds pretty great, but how competitive is T-Mobile’s new iPhone plan compared to the competition really? We compared the cheapest T-Mobile iPhone 5 plan you can get against the 24 month cost of getting one from AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, Cricket, Virgin Mobile and Straight Talk. The result? T-Mobile is one of the cheaper plans around… but it’s not the cheapest.
Who’s fault is it that enough people aren’t buying iPhones on Cricket?
Leap Wireless owns Cricket, a small prepaid carrier in the U.S. that recently started selling the iPhone. In fact, Leap was the first pay-as-you-go carrier in the U.S. to start selling the iPhone at full price. Now other prepaid carriers like Virgin Mobile have also picked up Apple’s handset.
In recent months, Leap hasn’t been very thrilled about how many iPhones it’s selling.
Cricket has become the iPhone 5’s first prepaid carrier after announcing today that it will be stocking Apple’s latest smartphone in “select Cricket markets” from September 28. That’s a week after the device launches on AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, but it’ll be worth the wait if you’re determined to avoid a lengthy contract.
The iPhone just got a lot cheaper thanks to Virgin Mobile.
Following the iPhone’s prepaid debut on Cricket Wireless just a week ago, Apple’s hugely popular smartphone is now available on Virgin Mobile. Like Cricket, Virgin is offering the handset on a prepaid basis, with prices starting at as little as $31 per month on the company’s Beyond Talk plan — which includes unlimited data, and unlimited texts.
Take advantage of the company’s offer and you could save yourself around $800 a year.
Virgin will soon carry the iPhone 4 and 4S, but when will it get the iPhone 5?
Up until a year and a half ago, U.S. customers had almost choice of carrier or rate plans when buying an iPhone. That’s something that has changed dramatically. The iPhone’s launch on Verizon and Sprint followed by several regional carriers across the country and the recent introduction of the iPhone as an option on prepaid networks Cricket and Virgin Mobile.
The new prepaid iPhone options may seem pricey because Cricket offers a very limited subsidies to attract iPhone 4 and 4S buyers and Virgin offers no discount or subsidy at all. As we noted earlier, however, paying the cost of the iPhone up front can actually save you money overall if you go with either Cricket or Virgin.
Beyond the upfront costs, however, there’s a big question to consider: will either prepaid carrier be included in the launch of the iPhone 5? While there isn’t a solid answer at this point, it seems likely that they won’t.
Earlier this week, we did the math and declared prepaid carrier Cricket Mobile to be the best iPhone deal around, but today’s announcement that Sprint’s Virgin Mobile will also be offering the iPhone 4S starting on June 24th changes the math substantially, and Cricket’s no longer looking like such a good deal.
Virgin Mobile’s iPhone deal requires you to purchase a completely unsubsidized iPhone from them up front at $649, $150 more expensive than Cricket. But that initial money spent up front can really pay off over time, depending on which plan you sign up for.
How much? You can save over $1000 over the course of two-years on Virgin Mobile compared to AT&T, Verizon or Sprint.