X

iPhone allegedly bound for Boost Mobile in September

Boost Mobile could be the next prepaid carrier to land the once-exclusive iPhone.

Jessica Dolcourt Senior Director, Commerce & Content Operations
Jessica Dolcourt is a passionate content strategist and veteran leader of CNET coverage. As Senior Director of Commerce & Content Operations, she leads a number of teams, including Commerce, How-To and Performance Optimization. Her CNET career began in 2006, testing desktop and mobile software for Download.com and CNET, including the first iPhone and Android apps and operating systems. She continued to review, report on and write a wide range of commentary and analysis on all things phones, with an emphasis on iPhone and Samsung. Jessica was one of the first people in the world to test, review and report on foldable phones and 5G wireless speeds. Jessica began leading CNET's How-To section for tips and FAQs in 2019, guiding coverage of topics ranging from personal finance to phones and home. She holds an MA with Distinction from the University of Warwick (UK).
Expertise Content strategy | Team leadership | Audience engagement | Tips and FAQs | iPhone | Samsung | Android | iOS
Jessica Dolcourt
2 min read
Cricket customers will get the once exclusive iPhone. Will Boost's? Apple

Cricket may have been the first prepaid carrier to snag the iPhone in late June, but if Sprint has its way, it won't be the last.

Apple's iPhone 4 and 4S will head to Sprint prepaid carrier Boost Mobile in early September, according to a "trusted" TechnoBuffalo source.

If Cricket's prices are any indication -- $499.99 for the 16GB iPhone 4S and $399.99 for the 8GB iPhone 4 -- Boost's iPhones wouldn't come cheap. However, prices could dip slightly the closer that Boost Mobile, or any other carrier, gets to Apple's release of its next-generation iPhone 5, which is expected in October.

CNET has reached out to Apple for comment. Sprint responded that they don't comment on rumors about their product portfolio.

Democratizing the iPhone
Today's flurry of prepaid iPhone news takes the iPhone, once the province of the tech elite on a single carrier, to new proletariat levels that began when Apple began offering the iPhone 4S on three carriers, not just its former monolith of AT&T.

The move to prepaid is a point scored for customers who eschew the contract to finally consider the iPhone in addition to dominant Android smartphones and the token BlackBerry.

Spreading out among the lesser-known carriers is also a way for Apple to further penetrate the smartphone market with multiple versions of its single phone brand. With each yearly iPhone iteration, previous models will cost less, and become more affordable prepaid options for those who don't identify needing the most cutting edge features.

Apple

CNET's Roger Cheng takes Apple's leap into prepaid as a sign that the iPhone has lost its cool factor. After all, Apple has always maintained its snob appeal by outwardly demanding high levels of customer experience, including network stability and speed (insert AT&T crack here.) Prepaid carriers are not known for speedy data networks.

In the end, Apple's tactic for democratizing the iPhone does three things. It takes direct aim at Google's aggressive headway with its myriad Android phones, and expresses Apple's confidence in the iPhone 5 as an utterly compelling premium device. Finally, the move makes scads of prepaid customers happy to know that the icon of smartphone advancement is within their reach after all.

Article updated at 6:05 p.m. PT with Sprint's comment.

Watch this: Apple iPhone 4S