Thursday, February 28, 2008

Virgin Mobile pumps up the volume :)

Gone is the 18-cent-a-minute plan, as far as I can tell. Gone is Virgin-To-Virgin 10c calling. That tier of service is now 20 cents per minute :/ or $6.99 per month for 10 cents per minute. But they now have some darned-sweet plans if you talk a bit...

Their new "roll forward" plans expire every 30 days if you don't add airtime, or roll over if you do. Starting at a relatively expensive $20 per month, they're actually worth paying extra for if you talk a bit: $20 gets you 200 minutes, $30 gets you 400 and $50 gets you 1000 minutes. Roll-over minutes (AT&T, I don't have any money fo ryou to sue me for) can be up to 5000 in number (versus 12 months' worth on AT&T for what it's worth) and don't expier, so this is actually a pretty hot plan for relatievly heavy talkers. If I didn't browse and text with a smartphone, I could probably fit my usage into $30 per month on this plan...with sub-10-cent rates finally breaking in, things are looking good here. Just keep in mind there are no night and weekend minutes on these plans.

Their monthly plans are also a bit better. Gone is the $15 per month 100 minute plan (not really needed anyway, considering the plans surrounding that price point)...all plans now include night and weekend minutes of some sort. $25 per month buys 200 anytime and 500 night and weekend minutes, $35 gets 300 and 1000, $50 gets 400 and unlimited, $60 gets 600 and unlimited and $100 gets 1000 and unlimited. So basically, if you use an equal amount of weekday and night\weekend minutes per month, or use more than that amount during nights and weekends, the Virgin Mobile monthly plans beat out the anytime minute 30-day cards that are now available. Unlimited mobile-to-mobile (Virgin Mobile only as far as I can tell) is now available on the top two plans ($50 and $100) rather than on only the very highest-end one. They also look to have roll-over minutes...wonder if that's anytime-only or also includes the limited night and weekend allotments...

You also get cheaper messaging; $5 per month for 1000 of any type or $10 for unlimited. Best deal in prepaid...again.

now what I don't get is why Virgin Mobile compares themselves to Boost Mobile (remember, Sprint is merged with Nextel, which owns Boost...and Sprinthalf-owns Virgin Mobile) in a few places on the site. Okay, maybe they're trying to get people of the old iDEN network, but still, odd conduct if you ask me.

My theory on these improvemments: Sprint released a kick-butt unlimited plan today, for $100...that includes EVERYTHING :)

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