First, Sprint announced the immediate availability of Android 2.3, Gingerbread for the smartphone. The update is available from the over-the-air update system, and will be rolled out to all Replenish units in waves. This marks the first mid-range phone update to Gingerbread for Sprint, since the failed-and-aborted update of the LG Optimus S. The older Optimus S has yet to get a fixed update to Gingerbread.
The second wave of news regarding the Replenish, is its availability on Sprint prepaid. Boost Mobile will begin carrying the device on its monthly plans with Shrinkage. The phone is Boost Mobile’s lowest-end Android phone to-date, starting at $99.99. Like other Android devices on Boost Mobile, the phone will not work on pay-as-you-go prepaid service, requiring at least Boost Mobile’s Daily Unlimited plan.
The Samsung Replenish is designed to be an environmentally-friendly smartphone, using high levels of recycled materials and less packaging. Sprint has stated that the cost of the device has been reduced by this move, enough for the carrier to drop the $10 advanced device requirement from the phone. However, many speculate that the Replenish was offered without the Advanced Device Fee to appease angry customers who had no modern smartphone options to chose from, without paying an additional $120/year. Sprint has not released any data that supports their claim that the Replenish costs less to manage than other, similarly-spec’ed devices which run on their network.