Wal-Mart to sell Verizon prepaid wireless

Mar 10, 2006

Verizon Wireless further entrenched itself in the battle for prepaid wireless phone customers Thursday, announcing that their INpulse pay-as-you-go service is now available at all U.S. Wal-Mart stores.

Though INpulse is prepaid, it is designed to function like a standard contract offering, allowing customers unlimited mobile-to-mobile calling for $0.99 per day.

Customers can now pay in advance for the INpulse service at any of Wal-Mart's 2,300 locations, as well as Best Buy and Circuit City stores, who have similar deals with Verizon.

"Now that INpulse is available in thousands of Wal-Mart locations," John Colaiuti, vice president of national distribution at Verizon Wireless, said in a news release, "customers will get the added convenience of one-stop shopping as well as the reliability and quality they expect from the company with the nation's most reliable wireless network."

Colaiuti said Wal-Mart's name value was one reason Verizon struck up this deal.

"Wal-Mart is a clear leader in the retail industry, and we are pleased to extend our distribution and the reach of our products to Wal-Mart's dedicated customer base," he said.

Laura Phillips, Wal-Mart's vice president of entertainment/wireless, said the deal with Verizon fits Wal-Mart's goal of offering customers quality options at good prices.

"With the availability of Verizon Wireless's INpulse solution, our customers now also have access to a wireless prepay option for an incredible value," Phillips said in a news release.

Wal-Mart already sells prepaid options from Cingular Wireless, the nation's largest mobile-phone company, as well as T-Mobile and Sprint Nextel.

Julie Ask, senior wireless analyst for Jupiter Research, said that wireless service providers use prepaid service options as a way to reach out and offer more options to consumers.

"New customer acquisition is very hard," Ask said. "The market is already at between 60 and 70 percent penetration."

Ask said that customers using prepaid options tend to be those who are either under 18 years of age or financially unable to sign up for a regular calling plan, as well as those who need a phone for short amounts of time or irregularly.

"A lot of the customers are folks who are too young or can't make the monthly commitment," she said.

Ask said that prepaid wireless providers always hope that their customers will like the service enough to want to sign up to a standard deal.

"They'd rather have more people signing on to two-year deals," she said. "Prepaid is a way of introducing offers to a younger audience."

Ask said that the deal with Wal-Mart is a sign that Verizon Wireless is committed to offering solid prepaid services.

"We'll see more marketing options through distribution points," she said. "The more options they give customers, the more folks we will see signed up, and that's a good thing for Verizon."

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Analysing animal anatomy using augmented reality

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Apple threatened by growth of prepaid smartphone plans

Oct 09, 2013

In a shift that could become a big threat to Apple Inc., U.S. consumers are increasingly signing up for a type of wireless service plan popular around the world that's traditionally not been in favor here - prepaid accounts.

T-Mobile gains key customers for first time in years

Aug 08, 2013

The iPhone and new pricing plans helped T-Mobile gain customers under contract plans for the first time in at least two and a half years, a major boost for a wireless carrier often dismissed as an afterthought in a market ...

AT&T to buy carrier Leap Wireless (Update)

Jul 12, 2013

AT&T announced plans Friday to buy mobile carrier Leap Wireless in a deal worth at least $4 billion, giving the telecom giant more spectrum and the Cricket prepaid phone franchise.

Recommended for you

Drivebot aims to touch driver bases for safety, savings

3 hours ago

Five Thailand-based engineers have developed a dongle device that serves as a fitness tracker for cars and have turned to Indiegogo to raise funds for bringing it forward. The attraction is that it is a simple ...

HP announces Sprout—a truly innovative workstation

5 hours ago

Hewlett-Packard Co has announced the development of a new kind of computer workstation—one that combines the power of a desktop computer with 3D scanning and projection—and adds a second display surface ...

Q&A: 'Interstellar' filmmaker Nolan on his robots

5 hours ago

In his secrecy-shrouded sci-fi extravaganza "Interstellar," filmmaker Christopher Nolan isn't just taking audiences to outer space. He's also sending a couple of robots along for the ride—and they're just ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.