Cricket Wireless has just become the first carrier to sell the iPhone in the U.S. as part of a pre-paid plan. Starting June 22, for $55 buyers of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S will have access to unlimited talk, texting, and data. The cost of the Cricket iPhone models are pegged at $150 less than the unlocked iPhone models sold by Apple, making it a sweeter deal for U.S. buyers reluctant to commit to one cellular network. While the Cricket pre-paid plan for the iPhone is a first for the U.S., pre-paid phones are much more common in international markets, which account for 60% of Apple’s sales. Leap Wireless, which owns and sells phones though Cricket, has been selling phones of all kinds on pre-paid plans for about 10 years now, using a flat-rate, pre-paid, unlimited access model. Cricket also sells contractless access to broadband.
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