Back in January early this year, it was reported that Sprint had plans to get rid of its two year contracts. But it appears that the fourth biggest wireless carrier in the United States has changed its mind. Indeed, the mobile service network provider has decided to bring back its contract plan that comes with subsidized smartphone, while at the same time, promising to provide even more options to its subscribers this time around.
The previous week, industry watchers had first noticed that two year smartphone plans had resurfaced in Sprint’s online store. Fierce Wireless has since verified it, and Sprint has gone on and issued a statement saying that after getting feedback from its subscribers, the wireless carrier has decided to reinstate the plans and offering additional options for customers in grabbing their new handsets.
By resurrecting its two year smartphone plans, Sprint is now only remaining wireless carrier from the Big Four networks in the US to offer contract plans to new subscribers. T-Mobile got the ball rolling when it eliminated its contracts about three years ago in 2013. Verizon Wireless then followed suit last year, ditching its subsidized smartphone offers; AT&T got in on the program when it started getting rid of its contract plans last month.
When Sprint announced its plans to stop offering two year smartphone plans back in January early this year, many had expected the wireless carrier to put its attention instead to its 24 month installment plan as well as its leasing options for new handsets. But it seems that Sprint chose instead to heed the requests of its customers.
Intriguingly, statistics provided by the industry appears to suggest that today’s mobile users now actually are more open to the idea of killing off standard two year service plans and instead pay off their devices month by month. Indeed, as explained by Fran Shammo, the chief financial officer of Verizon Wireless, during the wireless carriers recent fourth quarter conference call with industry analysts, the percentage of sign ups for installment plans have risen to 67 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015, compared with around 58 percent in the third quarter of 2015, and around 25 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014. Shammo added that during the fourth quarter of 2015, 25 million mobile devices were activated via installment plans, representing about 29 percent of the Big Red’s total postpaid customer base. Is Sprint making the right decision? We may all find out in the months to come.
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