Wireless carrier Cricket has announced it will be offering two iPhone models pre-paid with no contract starting on June 22. The iPhone 4 or the iPhone 4S will be available subsidized for $400 and $500 respectively. This pricing is $150 cheaper than buying a no-commitment iPhone 4S from Apple.
Besides no contract, Cricket offers the advantage of an unlimited talk, text and data plan for only $55 per month. This undercuts all of the major carriers, although Cricket will throttle data speeds when customers exceed 2.3 GB during the billing period.
Cricket customers have access to a nationwide 3G network, and can upgrade devices, change plans or quit service at any time without worry. This is in contrast to major carriers such as AT&T and Verizon, which subsidize iPhone prices more heavily but ask for a two-year contract in return. The Apple and Cricket partnership will reach 60 markets in the US, and mark the first time that the iPhone has been available with a pre-paid usage plan.
According to Cult of Mac, Boost Mobile will be the second pre-paid carrier to offer the iPhone, starting in September. Sources indicate Boost plans to carry both the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. It's not clear whether or not Boost will offer iPhone subscribers their current unlimited talk, text and data plan for $50 per month.