Traditionally, prepaid carriers and MVNOs have had fairly lackluster
phone options, particularly when it comes to smartphones. Basically,
it's difficult to find a legitimately high-end smartphone on a prepaid
carrier. The reason is pretty simple: high-end phones are expensive, and
since prepaid phones are sold off contract, it's difficult to convince
people to pay $500+ for a phone. Particularly when they aren't even
interested in paying their phone bill on a contract. But this week, a
breakthrough happened. Virgin Mobile launched what's likely the most
serious and sophisticated smartphone on a prepaid carrier, ever.
The Triumph is a 4.1" phone with a WVGA panel, aGPS, Wi-Fi, a Qualcomm
MSM8655 CPU, HDMI output, 5MP camera (with 720p output), and a preloaded
Virgin Mobile 2.0 app for music streaming. There's also a 1400mAh
battery, 512M of RAM, 2GB of ROM, an SD card slot, and Android 2.2 as
the OS. It runs on Sprint's CDMA network, and will be released and
priced later this summer. Hopefully it'll be rather affordable; we
definitely hope this is a trend that continues on.