Game Changer: Best Buy sells the Virgin Intercept for $189, unlimited data/text with 300 minutes is only $25/month. That is less than many feature phone plans.
Sprint (S) subsidiary Virgin offers the best value smartphone plan in the country. For $25/month (after taxes!) you get unlimited data and SMSes (no asterisks necessary) and 300 minutes of talk time. The catch is that they are pre-pay pay phones so Virgin doesn’t subsidize the cost of the phone purchase. That brought their flagship (and only Android) smartphone to $250, a price that most pre-payers might balk at.
Today however, Best Buy (BBY) drops that startup cost to $190.
This is the kind of deal that will have featurephone users moving over to Google’s (GOOG) mobile OS. If you extrapolate that cost over the typical 24 month period you are only paying $8/month or $33 with unlimited data. That’s less than many feature phone plans…for a solid smartphone.
Even if paid over six months, that is less than $32/month for the phone and $57 total/month with the plan. A steal.
The Intercept isn’t a high end smartphone with the major weakness being the 240×400 pixel screen (specs below). However it does have GPS, and all of the other features of the Android 2.1 OS. I’m already signing up the parents.
Notable’s specs on the Intercept:
- 3.2″ Touchscreen 1.54″ x 2.57″,WQVGA, 240 x 400 pixels, QWERTY keyboard slider
- 3G 3.2 MP Camera
- 800MHz Processor
- 2.1 OS Android™ Éclair
- CDMA 1900 MHz, EVDO REV
- Dimensions: 2.19″ x 4.43″ x 0.59″•
- Full WebKit Browser
- Battery: 3.7 Volt Lithium Ion, 1500 mAh, Talk Time: 6.4 Hours• Standby Time: 254 Hours