While Sprint can’t compete with Verizon and AT&T on network coverage or exclusive devices, it’s always had the advantage of being dirt cheap. Sprint’s offerings have always been significantly less expensive than the competition, but with a new deal that offers unlimited data, calling, and texting for $15 per line, things just went up a notch.
Of course, there’s one big asterisk attached to this deal, and it’s that you have to be porting in each line from another carrier to qualify. Sorry, existing Sprint customers or human beings who just parachuted into the country and need their very first phone number — this one’s not for you.
Other than needing a port-in, there’s no real terms and conditions attached to this deal that I can find. The data plan is Sprint’s standard “unlimited” offering, which means you can stream video at up to 480p, music up to 500kbps, and you might be deprioritized at peak times — all the same conditions that other carriers apply to their standard unlimited plans. You need a new line and a port-in to qualify, but there’s no condition that you have to be with a particular carrier for a particular amount of time. If you have an old Google Voice number lying around, that’ll probably do. You can also bring your own device or buy one from Sprint, although you’ll have to buy the device for full price, rather than taking advantage of any other offers.
The deal starts Friday, June 7th, and won’t run forever. It’s only available online through this link (which should be live by tomorrow).
Although Sprint’s network isn’t the best in the nation, it’s also no longer particularly terrible. Sprint has spent considerable cash building out its small cell network, and it also offers innovative solutions like the Magic Box if your coverage isn’t fantastic at home. When you consider the gulf in price between Sprint’s deal and the competition — Sprint’s unlimited plan costs $60 for a family of four, whereas T-Mobile is $160 for the same — it’s really hard to justify paying the extra.