One thing that's been missing from many prepaid plans is the ability to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). It looks like that barrier is finally falling. Last week Straight Talk and Net10 announced BYOD programs that will let you use any AT&T or T-Mobile or unloocked GSM phone on their unlimited plans.
The only restriction is that only Sprint branded phones can be activated. Phones from Boost Mobile, Virgin Mobile and other carriers like Verizon, can not be activated. Phones to be activated must also have a "clean ESN", meaning that they haven't been blacklisted by Sprint for non-payment or because they were reported lost or stolen.
I participated in a private Beta of the activation service and had ACRS activate a Sprint Motorola Photon Android phone for me. Once ACRS has completed the activation all I had to do was turn on my phone and it activated itself over the air with no manual programming.
This service will be only be offered by ACRS Wireless on their Web site at ptel.ws, it won't be available though PlatinumTel itself. It will take two to three weeks to process an activation request and there will be a $39.99 activation fee which includes a $10 (200 minutes on PAYGO) PlatinumTel service credit, which can be applied toward any of the PlatinumTel plans listed below. ACRS has not set a date for the start of the service other than to say it will be soon.
PlatinumTel offers pay as you go and monthly plans. Pay as you go rates are especially good; 5¢/minute voice, 2¢/text message (including international) and 10¢ data. International rates are also low, with calls to over 40 countries including Canada, Mexico, India and China only one cent/minute more than domestic calls.
|TnT 500||$20/30 days||500||500||10¢/each||20 MB|
|TnT 1000||$30/30 days||1000||1000||10¢/each||30 MB|
|Unlimited||$45/30 days||unlimited||unlimited||5¢/each||150 MB|
|Android 250 MB||$50/30 days||unlimited||unlimited||5¢/each||250 MB|
|Android 1 GB||$60/30 days||unlimited||unlimited||unlimited||1 GB|
PlatinumTel offers online call records and supports number portability. Coverage (map) is on the Sprint native network and is exactly the same as Boost or Virgin Mobile coverage. 3G (EVDO) data is available but not WiMax 4G.
Source: ACRS Forums