How much does a Sprint Pre save you? A lot
Sprint has for a few years slowly been gaining a reputation as a discount carrier. While that reputation comes with other stigmas (e.g. why so cheap?), it does come with one significant advantage: saving money. The folks over at PC World decided that they wanted to define just how much it costs to purchase and operate a smartphone on America’s four national carriers. The results are as you would expect, with AT&T and Verizon coming out on top, and Sprint at the bottom by far. The only truly fair way to compare the networks is by looking at their unlimited everything plans, since the features in the lower-priced plans all vary widely in features by carrier. So to go with the top-tier plans, they also pulled out the top tier smartphones pitting the iPhone 3GS 16 GB, BlackBerry Curve 8900, and Nokia E71x on AT&T vs. Verizon’s BlackBerry Storm, BlackBerry Tour 9630, and BlackBerry Curve 8330 vs. the G1 on T-Mobile vs. Sprint’s Palm Pre (which did not include the recent $50 price cut).
The most expensive? The iPhone 3GS on AT&T, with a starting cost of $235.99 (pre tax) and a monthly bill of $149.99. adding up to $3835.75 over two year contract. At the other end of the spectrum is our favorite, the Palm Pre. It has an identical out-the-door price at $235.99 (including $100 mail-in-rebate, excluding tax) but only has a monthly unlimited bill of $99.99. Total cost of owernership? $2635.75. That’s a savings of exactly $1200, as Sprint pointed out over the summer can add up to a lot of coin.