FreedomPop on October 1 became the nation’s second all-IP mobile carrier, offering voice and data service with a twist: the first 200 minutes of voice service, 500 texts and 500 MB of data each month are free.
FreedomPop plans to purchase bulk 3G and 4G data from Sprint and offer its own VoIP service over-the-top. The company joins TextNow as the only all-IP mobile carriers in the nation.
While eventually planning to offer customers a variety of Android phones, FreedomPop is starting out offering refurbished HTC Evo Design phones for $99 apiece. The company will primarily rely on Sprint’s WiMax network, as opposed to LTE, for reasons of reach and cost. “In lots of places Sprint has both networks, WiMAX is stronger, like LA and NYC,” said FreedomPop CEO Stephen Stokols. “We also wanted to launch a $99 phone. That’s hard to do on LTE.”
Outwardly, FreedomPop’s service will be identical to other mobile voice and data service. Customers will be issued phone numbers which they can use to call or text message any other number.
Customers exceeding their 200 minute per month allowance have a choice of purchasing extra units each month or subscribing to the premium $11 unlimited talk and text plan.
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