Confirming recent rumors, Virgin Mobile USA, a Sprint Nextel subsidiary, today announced that it will be offering Apple’s iPhone on a prepaid basis beginning June 29. The iPhone 4 and 4S will be available with a month-to-month unlimited data option costing $30 a month, with data throttling once you get past your monthly allowance of 2.5 gigabytes.
With this development, Apple’s device will soon be officially available on a total of sixteen carriers in the United States, three of them being prepaid telecoms: Boost Mobile (another Sprint property), Cricket Communications and Virgin Mobile…
According to the official press release, the iPhone will be available without a contract and with no fees for activation or roaming (you can register your interest here).
Marking Virgin’s tenth anniversary, the company shaved $5 off the cost of its $35 a month Beyond Talk unlimited data and messaging plans for iPhone, meaning you’ll be paying only $30 a month provided you registered for automatic monthly payments with a credit card, debit card or PayPal account.
A mobile hotspot plan is also available for an additional $15 a month. Additional plans are also available, priced at $40/$50 a month for 1,200/unlimited voice minutes, both eligible for a $5 discount as well. All three plans include unlimited data throttled after 2.5 GB and text messages.
And since customers are not obliged to commit to a two-year contract and can cancel their month-to-month plan at any moment, the device is sold unsubsidized at $549/$649 for the 8GB iPhone 4/16GB iPhone 4S.
Cricket Communications, a Leap Wireless company, will also offer no-commit prepaid iPhones on June 22 at subsidized prices of $399/$499 for the 8GB iPhone 4/16GB iPhone 4S, which is full $150 cheaper compared than Apple’s asking prices for unlocked iPhones.
However, Cricket’s offering requires an obligatory $55 month-to-month plan that includes unlimited voice, text messages and data.
An unconfirmed report recently claimed that Boost Mobile, another Sprint-powered MVNO, will offer prepaid iPhones around September.
Prepaid iPhones are increasingly becoming a viable option, especially if you’re a jailbreaker looking to purchase an unlocked device that can be taken to other carrier.
Note that Virgin Mobile is a Sprint property, which runs a CDMA network, meaning these are CDMA iPhones that won’t work on GSM networks like AT&T or T-Mobile USA.
Do you think your next iPhone will be of a prepaid variety?