For those people who are looking for the latest smartphone to use without being tied to a plan, Virgin Mobile USA recently announced that they will begin selling the iPhone 5 on June 28th. The device, which will be offered through their Beyond Talk service plans, give users the ability to pay when they want on a month-to-month basis.
Plans for the Virgin Mobile USA option will begin at just $35/month. That plan would offer 300 minutes and unlimited data. For unlimited minutes, plans are $55/month, with a $5 discount if a person decides to sign up for automatic payments in the future.
Right now, the biggest drawback for people who use the phone is that they will have to pay more for the device upfront. Virgin Mobile USA will be offering a slight $100 discount on off the standard Apple unsubsidized pricing, but the cheapest 16 GB iPhone 5 will be priced at $549.99.
The delay in launching the iPhone 5 on Virgin Mobile USA could also hurt sales. Most people who have been wanting the device have decided to take their business elsewhere due to the delays. While the company is offering a great deal, many iPhone 5 users are already locked into a deal with another company so they will be unable to take advantage of the offer.
It will be interesting to see just how many people end up adopting this option going forward. Prepaid and no contract cell phone usage has always had a certain stigma, especially in the United States. The pricing overall will be a major selling point, but many consumers will have doubts about the coverage that is being offered to them. Running on the Sprint network, many people have been dissatisfied with the way things work on that network. This might be more of a wait and see option for people who are on the fence with the iPhone in general.