Sprint Aims To Poach AT&T, Verizon Users with Half-Price Plans

Wireless carrier Sprint is launching an aggressive pricing strategy aimed at pulling wireless customers away from Verizon and AT&T. Under a program that kicks off Friday, Sprint is offering to cut in half the monthly rates paid by customers currently with those competing carriers.

And it appears Sprint's offer is not just a come-on gimmick. Those half-off rates are "not just a promotion. This will be the customer's ongoing price," according to Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure.

Currently the third-largest mobile carrier in the U.S., Sprint's market share has dwindled to 7.2 percent of all wireless customers (both pre-paid and post-paid). It has also ranked at the bottom in terms of customer satisfaction, coming in behind Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T in the last two years of ratings by Consumer Reports.

Pre-Paid Visa Card Offer

Under Sprint's "Cut Your Bill in Half Event," announced today, Verizon and AT&T customers who upload copies of their current wireless bills will be able to get comparable Sprint plans for half the price. Customers who make the switch will receive unlimited talk and text, as well as data plans that most closely match the ones they currently have with those competing carriers.

Sprint is also offering prepaid Visa cards to Verizon and AT&T customers who are charged an early termination fee or installment bill balance upon switching carriers. Qualifying customers are eligible for up to $350 per line.

The half-price offer comes with several caveats. Customers who make the switch can lease or buy new phones from Sprint, but those who don't turn in competitors' phones within 30 days will be assessed a non-return fee of $200 per line. Uploaded competitors' bills must also be in English only, although Sprint will accept Spanish-language bills at its retail outlets.

Staff Cuts and Rebranding

Sprint also noted that the half-price offer...

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