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Virgin Mobile: To Continue Offering Android Devices Until Fall 2018

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When Virgin Mobile relaunched in June, it unveiled a new partnership it had forged with Apple to be an iPhone-exclusive carrier.

Ever since then, the Sprint prepaid brand has been publishing articles to promote this decision. It introduced a new plan called Inner Circle, which would offer unlimited data for $50 per month. A few months later, the carrier offered a year of unlimited service for only $1 and made this available to customers who would activate their own iPhone device and port an existing number to the plan.

The decision to offer such a deal gave the prepaid market something to look forward to, especially since it appeared to be an unbeatable offer. And considering the prepaid market is very competitive, for Virgin to offer the $1 for one year of unlimited service under the Inner Circle promotion was a bold strategy on the part of the prepaid brand.

But it looks like there could be a problem coming from Virgin's iPhone-only commitment. Of course, it was to be expected that Virgin's decision to offer the promotion exclusively for iPhone users would be met with dissatisfied Android users.

A new report from Wave7 Research proves that Virgin could be pulling the reins on its iPhone-only promotion. Despite heavily promoting Inner Circle online, Wave7 noticed that the prepaid brand has not made use of any TV or radio marketing for the plan. The firm has noted this is "sharply negative on the Inner Circle launch."

Taking a look at Virgin's website, you'd find that Android devices are still pretty much available on the prepaid brand. And even though Virgin already announced that they were an iPhone-exclusive carrier, they still managed to add the new Moto E4 to their device lineup.

The same is true with physical stores in Walmart, Best Buy, and Target, as these continue to sell only Android devices with monthly plan options of $35 for 5GB, $45 for 10GB, and $60 for unlimited. Even representatives from these stores deny they have received training on Inner Circle.

When you look at their website, you'll find only one iPhone model priced at under $200-- the iPhone SE for $160. And it looks like they will be offering the iPhone 8 Plus for $800. With the demand for more affordable devices, it could be possible that the service provider will be catering to the demand of its customers more; which ultimately means more Android devices.

A spokesperson for Virgin Wireless confirmed that they have received concern from their Android customers as they asked about their ability to upgrade their phones in the future. The brand has promised that it is working with Boost Mobile to start offering competitive plans as an option for the Android customers of Virgin who wish to buy a new phone. As soon as new options have been made, Virgin promises it will give an update to its Android customers.

The spokesperson stated that Virgin will stop selling Android devices by fall of 2018.

When Virgin announced its transition to an iPhone-only brand, it did not intend to stop selling Android devices overnight. The brand promised that it will still continue serving its existing Android customers, at least not until next year.


Source: Fierce Wireless

19 comments:

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  1. I don't understand how they are still existing in 2017.

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  2. I think it's obvious enough to say that Virgin Mobile will no longer exist after the M&A, as it's corporate suicide to exclude a platform that has 90+% marketshare worldwide. Sprint & Co are basically treading water for the inevitable downsize. It doesn't need two discount brands, and Virgin looks to be the odd man out.

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    1. Your post assumes the merger will be approved. Since Pai is associated with Verizon, can one then conclude that Verizon is in favor of the T-Mobile Sprint unification?

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    2. Verizon will not oppose a T-Mobile/Sprint merger. They are looking forward to the disappearance of one competitor, with another competitor saddled with a huge debt load and preoccupied with integrating two networks, two financial and two customer service systems.

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    3. I agree with you on one part, but Verizon won't notice the loss of Sprint: it's so poor quality to not to count as a competitor.

      But maybe if the combined T-Mobile/Sprint is forced to give up some spectrum holdings, Verizon can have a crack at these?

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    4. "Since Pai is associated with Verizon"

      Ajit Pai is not associated with Verizon. You have him confused with Guru Pai, senior vice president and chief product officer at Verizon.

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    5. Ajit Pai was an Associate General Counsel at Verizon from 2001 to 2003.

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    6. Hmmm...I wonder if Guru and Ajit are related. This isn't a very common Indian last name--Pai--and from a relatively small ethnolinguistic community.

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  3. Replies
    1. You should, if you're a customer on one of the US networks.

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  4. "Since Pai is associated with Verizon,.."
    FALSE statement. He used to work there, but is no longer associated.

    FCC is not the only gov agency to review any proposed merger and object. DoJ (and probably DoD) will get a chance to comment based on past practices re. wireless consolidation.

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    1. Methinks you protest too much. Telling.... Verizon must be giddy about having only two competitors, and a boatload of divested spectrum.

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    2. So you expect the FCC--under a FORMER (there, happy?) industry lawyer--will do its part in doing the right thing?

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    3. I do indeed.

      And Verizon only has two competitors NOW.

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    4. "So you expect the FCC--under a FORMER (there, happy?) industry lawyer--will do its part in doing the right thing?"
      Of course. After all, FCC is an independent agency and the Chairman is confirmed by the Senate.
      When Tom Wheeler, a former industry executive with far more industry ties than Pai was asked why he visited the White House 9 times during the time FCC was developing the Net Neutrality rules, he answered: "The proposed rule was not discussed."
      I believe him. I'm pretty sure they just discussed basketball, organic gardening, school lunch menus or how to unlock an old Blackberry. Maybe some 'general policy issues,' but what's wrong with that? I mean, when the President calls, you gotta go.....

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  5. Since Sprint can't decide what to do with Virgin they should sell it to Apple and let Apple run a real all IPhone MVNO

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  6. There is a Government Watch Dog agency that monitors and has word in any corporate merger by way of the ear of the U.S. President. Plus, Carl Ichan has already spoken out against this and he's usually for mergers!!!

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    1. "I way of the ear of the U.S. President."

      I hope Trump's ears are plugged. Matters like this are best left to the people, not government.

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  7. Virgin won't be around by fall of next year.

    Boost might survive because of their dealer network, but Virgin's just wasting resources.

    Mega T won't actually need two of their own brands competing for shelf space.

    That's why Virgin's trying to dump all its iPhones prior to the merger, so that at least it won't come to the chopping block as a toxic asset.

    But as it stands, they're currently about to eat a loss on all the magic beans Apple sold them.

    They were supposed to grow into a beanstalk that led to the golden goose, but instead they just turned out to be really expensive trash that do very little and aren't that popular.

    Honestly, Virgin never should've let itself be suckered into buying iPhones in the first place.

    They were never a good investment, and that reality is slowly starting to sink in across the entire industry.

    Anyway, I think Virgin's iPhone induced economic despair is a teachable moment for the entire industry, and hopefully it's the first step to Apple being shown the door for its various shenanigans (like the MMS ransom).

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