Are Alternative Carriers Like Virgin Mobile Selling the iPhone for “Real”? (you better believe it!)

Radio Shack Virgin Mobile iPhone $30/month plan

How long has this plan been around? This plan sounds so cheap, there has to be a catch. Are these re-manufactured phones? Anyone know anyone with this plan? It is auto pay, no annual contract, 300 minutes, unlimited data and messaging, for the iPhone 4S. I don’t have a cell phone, believe it or not. The phone is $649. $30 plus taxes and fees per month.

Virgin Mobile is the “Real Deal” and I am now using the service myself. Phone and data coverage is as good anywhere that Sprint is – well… good. That is, Virgin uses Sprint’s networks. So, as far as 3G or 4G SPEEDS, these are SPRINT issues. Sprint is rolling out 4G “LTE” networks as fast as they can, but total deployment looks at least two years away.

Virgin Mobile - iPhone Ads
Virgin Mobile – iPhone Ads

Yes, there is a $30, monthly billable (in advance of use) plan for 300 minutes, unlimited text and Data. I got the 1200 minute plan for $45, unlimited text & Data. I lived on Miami Beach in a high rise and for 10 years never had an issue with Sprint, until the iPhone came out and I HAD TO SWITCH TO ATT whose “Miami Beach” coverage at the time sucked. (I hated that). I couldn’t make a phone call from inside the Apple store when I bought the first iPhone because of “no bars” inside the Lincoln road store in South Beach! Could when I walked outside of the store with only “two bars” showing service.

The phone you buy at Radio Shack is the same phone you would get from Sprint, Verizon, ATT, Best Buy, HH Greg (kidding) or Apple (except they are different models for different carriers). Same warranty applies as does Apple care extended warranty if you buy it. They are not refurbished (although I would buy a refurbished one before paying $649 for a 4S that will soon be out dated and orphaned as Apple has started doing with all of it’s products.

That is, leaving out relatively current models from software upgrades available only for “newer” models. [John’s 2008 Mac Pro unable to load Mountain Lion directly from the App store].

Apple wants your money directly, they make less money if third party vendors sell thier products. So whoever “they” are that are telling you NOT to buy from a third party like Best Buy or Radio Shack, is just blowing smoke. Apple warranties all of it’s newly purchased products for one year, unless they are “gray market” purchased in another country, regardless where you bought it from.

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