Virgin mobile

Yesterday, that is Thursday; we brought you the story of how Virgin Mobile was drawing closer to venturing into the prepaid market for the iPhone. The story mentioned that Virgin Mobile 10 retail outlets were to commence operations today in Chicago. The Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE:S) partial-owned telecommunication heavyweight, has stuck to its word, and sale of the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 4S began today.

At the moment, the retail outlets only offer the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 4. The latter, which is cheaper, goes for $550 and has a storage capacity of 8GB. Customers in need of more space, will have to dig deeper into their pocket for the iPhone 4S which has a storage capacity of 16GB. The iPhone 4S has a price tag of $650.

Prepaid customers will have the chance to enjoy the Beyond Talk unlimited data and messaging plans, which will start at an affordable $35 per month. To maintain a hook on customers, Virgin will also extend a 5% discount on customers who opt for automatic monthly payments.

These highly anticipated iPhones which are now available to customers put a lid on the problem of long-term contracts and costly monthly fees. Nonetheless, the upfront price is somewhat hefty.

It is a definite risk for Virgin Mobile as the prepaid market has not yet gathered notable momentum. All the same, the outlook is bullish.

The iPhones will be set under the umbrella of the Sprint Nationwide network. Sprint is part of the list of Apple’s swelling portfolio of carrier networks and companies. All along though, it has been noted that Apple has restrained from touching T-Mobile. This has slowly but surely raised a few eyebrows.