Long-time Sprint MVNO PlatinumTel has officially rolled out its long planned GSM service, as it transitions from CDMA service to GSM as an official T-Mobile MVNO and reseller. To celebrate the rollout, the company has also launched a new online promotion whereby the first month of service and a new SIM card can be had with the coupon code SIMWOOT40, which brings the total to $20.
PlatinumTel has also rebranded as a result of the new service launch and will now be known as PTel, with CDMA services being available until March of next year and the MVNO recommending the purchase of a new SIM card and phone in order to continue service under the new service plans, which include 2 monthly plans with different data levels per month and an increasingly rare PAYG option starting at 5 cents per minute. PlatinumTel is no longer activating its own Sprint-sourced devices or previously-activated devices as of yesterday as a result of the transition.
With PlatinumTel transitioning to GSM from its origins as a Sprint MVNO the irony isn’t lost on long-time users of the service, as Sprint is increasing its wholesale services coverage in order to attract new MVNOs on its network, even going as far as offering Sprint’s current device lineup and BYOD service for previously activated devices along with LTE and WiMax service.
For PlatinumTel to transition away from Sprint may mean that the offer from T-Mobile was better for the company than remaining with Sprint, as well as the possibility of giving it an easier way to allow customers to bring their own devices, as PlatinumTel previously required those customers activating service to own Sprint phones that were previously activated with clear serial numbers, two key elements that are becoming more difficult to manage with CDMA phones thanks to the rise of Craigslist, ebay and the new carrier-backed device blacklist.