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Virgin Mobile USA Relaunches As An iPhone-Only Carrier

Article Comments  3  

Jun 21, 2017, 12:45 PM   by Eric M. Zeman   @phonescooper
updated Jun 21, 2017, 7:41 PM

Virgin Mobile USA, which is owned and operated by Sprint, transformed itself today into new provider much more closely aligned with the Virgin brand. Significantly, Virgin Mobile USA is now an iPhone-only carrier, meaning Apple's iPhones are the only phones Virgin will sell moving forward. Further, shoppers will be able to buy and activate an iPhone on Virgin Mobile USA at Apple Stores. Pricing for Virgin Mobile iPhones starts at $279 for the 32 GB iPhone SE and ranges up to $969 for the 256 GB iPhone 7 Plus. According to the company's web site, Virgin Mobile does not offer financing for iPhones and customers will have to pay full price. The company now offers only a single service plan. For $50 per month, Virgin Mobile USA provides unlimited talk, text, and data in the U.S. International roaming add-ons start at $5 per month. There are limitations on Virgin's plan: video playback is capped at 480p, music is streamed at 500Kbps, and gaming is streamed at 1.5Mbps. Virgin says mobile data speeds will be suppressed when the network is congested. For a limited time, Virgin Mobile is offering up to 12 months of service for just $1. The $1 yearly service offer is only available to customers buying a new iPhone and activating it on Virgin's network. Customers will have to sign up by July 31, 2017 to score the $1 deal. At the end of the 12-month service plan for $1, customers will automatically be moved to the $50 plan. Last, the $1 yearly plan and iPhone purchase buy customers access to the Virgin Inner Circle. The Inner Circle is a promotional program that provides benefits with other Virgin-branded properties. For example, Inner Circle members who buy one plane ticket on Virgin Atlantic will be given a second ticket for free. Inner Circle members who book two nights at a Virgin-owned hotel will be able to cash in on a third night for free. Virgin says these offers will be made available to Inner Circle members every few weeks. Customers interested in this package can pre-order one of Virgin Mobile USA's iPhones starting today. The phones and Inner Circle will become available starting June 27. Last, Virgin said it will offer "pre-loved" iPhones starting in the fall, allowing customers to take advantage of more affordable prices.

more info at Virgin Mobile USA »
more info at Inner Circle »

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Comments

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gloopey1

Jun 21, 2017, 1:20 PM
edited

Marketing Strategy

Virgin's move was probably an effort to distinguish itself as a higher-end prepaid service. Along with competition from other MVNOs, Virgin has its cousin Boost to contend with for market share. Striking this deal with Apple gives it visibility in all their stores as well.
Yes Virgin is also promoting it's Airline, hotels and soon it's cruise ships.
PhoneMaster

Jun 22, 2017, 1:17 AM

Seems like a boneheaded move by Sprint

Sprint already severely restricts which devices can go on their networks by whitelisting devices, having various activation rules involving their pre vs. postpaid brands and the overall difference of Sprint's network from their competitors' which makes their devices somewhat unique. They should be aiming to relax these rules as much as possible, not restrict them, moreover so in prepaid brands in order to gain as many customers as they can. It's amazing how many bad decisions after bad decisions this company keeps making, regardless of who's at the helm.
 
 
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