In a shocker to prepaid phone plan fans, Virgin Mobile has announced the iPhone will be coming to it’s network on June 29th. For a high upfront cost of $649 for the iPhone 4S and $549 for the iPhone 4, users will get the lowest monthly costs for the iPhone on any network. While that price may be sticker shock compared to the subsidized prices provided by other carriers, which charge $99 for the iPhone 4 and $199 for the 4S, the user saves much more over the course of two years.
The smart consumer will go with Virgin Mobile’s plan. For $30 a month you get unlimited texting, data, and 300 minutes of calling a month. This is quite the amazing deal, and they also have $40 and $50 plans for more calling, giving you 1,200 minutes and unlimited minutes, respectively.
So how much will you save over two years? You will save about $1,300 compared to other carriers.
CNN Money did the math and found that Virgin’s charges will be $1,370 over two years while Cricket Wireless’ prepaid plan comes out to $1,720 and the big boys like AT&T and Verizon average out to $2,775 over that same time frame.
This is a power play by Apple as well to cement their lead in the market. By reaching those who don’t want to be tied down by contracts or don’t have the credit to sign up for the two-year contracts offered by the major carriers. The number of people using contract-free plans is growing, while those on contract plans has plateaued, which may be a signal to the market that consumers are getting smarter about their phone plans.
You are the smart consumer because you understand the value of contract-free plans. This is a groundbreaking announcement. Get ready for the change.