It’s not often we run a crazy headline around here, but seriously, this deserves a bit of attention. If you are one of those non-crazy Smartphone users, that isn’t out for the latest hardware, rooting the bejeezus out of your phone or are just one of those social networkers that Face-tweets all day, this is one to check out…
First off, you need to swing in to your local Radio Shack, Wal-Mart or other Virgin Mobile retailer and snag one of those fancy LG Optimus V’s or Samsung Intercept Android phones. There is also the BlackBerry that this will work on, but who wants to spend an extra $10 a month when you are penny pinching. Second, sign up for the $25 a month plan. Third, download Skype and sign up for their $2.99 a month Unlimited US plan. Now, you are all set.
So, using your $200 handset, you can access Virgin Mobile’s unlimited data/300 minute plan. You can then use this magical combination of software on your device to do amazing things.
Skype – The $2.99 a month plan allows you to call any landline or cell phone in the US or Canada. You have unlimited incoming minutes and 10,000 outgoing. If you can keep your phone charged up long enough to use more than that, you need another phone too. With the ability to have Skype assign you a web number, you can link this to Google Voice and not use any minutes to call anyone – plus you can use Google’s lower cost international calling.
With the new version of Skype for Android you can call over the wireless devices 3G connection or Wi-Fi for those area’s where coverage isn’t as good. This means, when you combine the $2.99 unlimited plan from Skype with the $25 unlimited 3G data from Virgin, you end up with a completely unlimited $27.99 a month mobile plan.
The current 2 year contract price on a similar package is $2300 on Sprint and $2750 on Verizon. The final cost of your Virgin Mobile Prepay cost for 2 years comes in at a measly $871.76.
If you factor this out over the cost of a family plan, 4 lines on Sprint would set you back $6527 and $7965 on Verizon. The Virgin Mobile deal has you clock in at a whopping $3487.
While we love the latest and greatest hardware, when the economy is as bad as it is, it’s hard not to grab nickels and dimes where you can. And the $3000 your putting back in your families pockets will certainly cover a large number of those nickels for you.
The Disclaimer: While this all sounds well and good, remember the following information…
1) Make sure you have excellent coverage in your area – and we recommend a strong Wi-Fi connection for home use.
2) Skype is a great service, but it can feature lags in slower data areas. You (pause) might (pause) need (pause) to watch that.
3) Pre-paid cell plans offer no guarantee of pricing staying stable. If Virgin or the network that Virgin uses, decides that that plan will no longer be made available, you would be stuck with using Google Voice for text and Wi-Fi for all calling. Not bad if you are in an office all day and at home the rest of the time, but it’s lousy when you are on the road and need to make a call.
4) Always check the coverage before you purchase a device. Even in our area, with a strong 4G tower Sprint service is still ‘questionable’ in our area.