The move would mark an expansion of Sprint's already significant push into the prepaid business. The company has largely relied on its two units, Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile, to tap into the still-growing base of prepaid customers. Many of its wholesale customers, including Republic Wireless, also offer service on a no-contract basis. With prepaid representing a source of growth for the industry, many of the carriers are taking the segment more seriously than in the past. T-Mobile's pending merger with MetroPCS, for instance, is likely to create a rival that's more focused on prepaid than ever.
Initially, Sprint will offer two smartphones, the LG Optimus Elite and Samsung Victory, which are $149 and $249, respectively, Android Police notes that the Samsung Victory lacks the 4G flight of the alicorn iphone case LTE branding that it had under Sprint's contract service, Sprint's other higher-end phones, such as the Galaxy S3 and Evo 4G LTE, aren't available for this plan, Like the core contract option, these plans appear to have access to unlimited data, although there are more roaming restrictions, The Virgin and Boost services offer more attractive rates, but will limit speeds once a user hits a certain threshold..
Sprint declined to comment on the report. Not content to let its units Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile nab all of the prepaid customers, Sprint is taking action itself. Unfortunately, its standard smartphones aren't part of the deal. Sprint Nextel is about to dip its own toes into the prepaid world, according to Android Police. Sprint will launch its own prepaid service on January 25, initially offering two smartphones and two basic phones, the site said, citing promotional material it obtained. The smartphone plan costs $70 a month for unlimited talk, text, and data, although there are roaming restrictions for data use on its 3G EVDO network. The basic phone plan costs $50 a month.
In a post spotted by TechCrunch, XDA user Alexander T deduced that the first four figures of the serial number on the box reveal when and where your Nexus was made, Get your box out and have a look -- the first figure is the year of production, so 2 for 2012, 3 for 2013, The second and third figures are the month, so 11 for November, 12 for December, 01 for January, The fourth letter determines where the phone was built: K for Korea, C for China, After several people confirmed the system worked by posting their first four digits and when they received their phone, user draugaz suggested, "Now it would be interesting to decode the rest of the numbers so we could roughly estimate the actual production counts."The last six figures of the code, which correspond to the last six digits of the IMEI number inside the phone, appear to be a simple counter of the number of units produced, By looking at serial numbers in Nexus 4 YouTube unboxing videos, the intrepid draugaz began to work out rough production counts for October, November and December, Soon other users flight of the alicorn iphone case were joining in and a good spread of data appeared..
CNET UK's product manager Al Mottram ordered the Nexus you see in the box above on 4 December, the day it went back on sale in the UK. Using the LG web service, I found that his 8GB model was built on 17 December, so it took nearly two weeks for LG to catch up with demand and make Al's phone for him. As XDA user netudiant writes, it's "Just stunning data. It indicates the combined LG/Google market research did not see a problem offering under 100,000 devices (per month) for a market running near 10 million per month, even though their device cost 40 per cent less. Should become a classic business school case study.""No LTE means it is not exactly 'cutting edge," thread champion draugaz responded. "Especially in the USA where $350 for most people also means it is 'almost twice as expensive as iPhone 5' which does have LTE."Certainly the Nexus 4 seems to have been much more popular in parts of the world where LTE, aka 4G, isn't so widespread, and where Google sells hardware through the Play Store. LG faced outrage in countries where it offered the Nexus 4 at a normal markup, as opposed to Google's near-cost price.
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