Sprint to Offer Prepaid iPhone at $50 Cheaper Per Month

Sprint will begin offering a pre-paid version of the iPhone 4S through its Virgin Mobile pre-paid service on June 29, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The publication first reported on a pre-paid version of the Apple device last week and now more details have been revealed.

Virgin Mobile will be offering the 16GB version of the latest iPhone for $649. Customers will also be able to enjoy unlimited data plans on the service without having to agree to a 2-year contract. The carrier's plan will also be one-third of the price of plans from rival postpaid carriers.

This decision will also help Sprint to meet a $15.5 billion four-year purchase commitment that it made with Apple.

Most major carriers offering the iPhone discount the device significantly upfront, but make up the money by locking customers into 2-year contracts with high monthly fees.

Virgin Mobile is not the only company who will be selling a pre-paid iPhone this year.

Another carrier known as Leap Wireless announced its plans last week to sell pre-paid iPhones through its Cricket brand starting June 22.

Cricket plans to offer the 8GB iPhone 4 for $399 and the 16GB iPhone 4S for $499 with the $55-a-month unlimited plan.

An Apple spokesperson recently made a statement regarding carriers such as Leap offering a pre-paid version of the iPhone.

"By making iPhone available on pre-paid plans through Cricket Wireless, we are making the best smartphone more accessible to an even broader market in the U.S.," said Apple representative Natalie Harrison.

Sprint acquired the rights to offer the iPhone last year when the 4S launched. The company has enjoyed much success with the device and this new pre-paid strategy should bring Sprint even more business through Virgin Mobile.