Verizon Wireless spokesperson Brenda Raney has confirmed with the Wall Street Journal that the carrier will launch its new flat-rate prepaid plan nationwide beginning this Thursday. The plan consists of a $50 monthly rate which includes unlimited voice, text and web access, but would not confirm if it was the currently in market testing Verizon Unleashed offering being sold in select markets and online with handsets from LG and Pantech.
The new offering will also be sold in Best Buy, Target and Wal-Mart locations, putting it in direct competition with MetroPCS, Cricket, Tracfone and AT&T’s GoPhone service. The current Verizon Unleashed offering consists of realigned service plans at new per minute and per day rates, but the emphasis will be placed on the $50 monthly plan as seen below.
One caveat of the new prepaid plan is that it will be sold with and tied to specific handsets and it will not be offered with smartphones, leaving those that want such devices to rely on the monthly prepaid hybrid plans, though this means that parents are also Verizon customers will have an alternative to adding another line and not have to worry about overages. However, Verizon still has yet to match Virgin Mobile or Boost Mobile’s prepaid smartphone offerings, with Virgin Mobile still being the best alternative for those that want a high-end smartphone with data access.