FreedomPop, the United States based mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) basically known for offering free voice call and data services, is now offering zero rated data from instant mobile messaging platform WhatsApp. This means that mobile users in the US can now send text messages, videos, and other content without ever worrying about facing data fees.
Currently, FreedomPop is an MVNO leasing network capacity from major US wireless carrier Sprint, and boasts a free wireless plan that already comes with 500 megabytes of data, 200 minutes of voice calls, and 500 text messages a month. Earlier this year, FreedomPop had actually debuted zero rated data from WhatsApp in Spain, even though FreedomPop and WhatsApp are not under an official partnership.
According to Stephen Stokols, the chief executive officer of FreedomPop, the decision to bring zero rated data from WhatsApp to the US mobile market was made in order to allow customers of the MVNO to gain access to mobile data without having to worry about paying for voice calls and text messaging services. Stokols further pointed out that in America, one is forced to purchase unlimited voice calls and text messaging, but FreedomPop offers a data only solution geared for those existing users or who are looking to use WhatsApp.
It is no secret that WhatsApp is steadily gaining traction in the US, and FreedomPop’s move is both a means for accelerating WhatsApp usage in the country, as well as a preemptive strike against WhatsApp itself, who has been rumored to have plans of debuting its own MVNO in America. WhatsApp had actually launched an MVNO a couple of years ago in Germany, but after the firm was acquired by Facebook for a sum of $19 billion, that MVNO launch never really took off.
Messaging providers entering into the wireless business is nothing new. As explained by Stokols, it would be a logical next step for providers looking to expand their business, and besides, messaging has grown in importance as a facet of wireless communications. Previously it was just mostly voice calls and text, but now messaging (in its current form now, incorporating text, chat, videos, and other features) is becoming more widely used. For a messaging provider, transitioning into the wireless business would just be like expanding your shop’s wares to include other stuff.
FreedomPop adopts a freemium approach to selling its wireless services, then allows its users to upgrade into bigger packages or other value added services depending on their mobile needs. To explore more deals from the MVNO, you can start comparing plans and phones from FreedomPop at Wirefly now.
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