A couple of weeks ago BestMVNO reported that Boost Mobile would be launching an expanded data network to give subscribers access to T-Mobile's network. Today the rollout of that network has begun in select markets. A full nationwide launch is scheduled for sometime in May.
Wave7 Research recently noted in a report sent out to its subscribers that Boost Mobile has been heavily focused on the transition to T-Mobile with Boost employees and dealers undergoing intensive training on the transition. However, in a minority of markets, Boost Mobile will continue to remain focused on the Sprint network. The reason is Sprint has a much better network in those markets. One region noted in the Wave7 Research report where Sprint has a better network in select zip codes is West Virginia.
Boost Mobile's Expanded Data Network: Availability And Details Explained
Boost Mobile has set up a webpage highlighting some of the specifics about the new network. The network has been launched in just four test markets; Colorado in select locations, Kansas area, Pittsburgh area, and Texas in select locations. New and existing customers in those markets will be able to gain access to the network by purchasing one of the following phones:
LG Stylo 5x
Moto G7 Play
Samsung Galaxy A10e
Samsung Galaxy A20
Bring your own device is not allowed at this time.
Beginning on May 2nd, more devices will be granted access to the network including the iPhone 6, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XR, iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max. A new T-Mobile Network (TN) SIM will be required to gain access to the network.
Boost Mobile's webpage highlighting the new network is still lacking in detail.
Some Devices Will Require A Firmware Update For Access On The Expanded Network
BestMVNO has received a copy of some of the training materials being sent out to dealers about the new network from a third-party source associated with the "Prepaid Kingpin." According to the materials, dealer employees must complete their training by May 6th. The materials also state that some devices may require a firmware update to be able to use the new network. Devices that will require a firmware update include the Moto E6, Samsung Galaxy A10e, Moto G7 Play, and possibly the Samsung Galaxy A20. When iPhones are allowed access, they'll also require a firmware update as will eligible BYOD phones when they are allowed to be activated.
Gaining Access To The Expanded Data Network Won't Be As Simple As Swapping SIMS, Yet
Unfortunately, at this time, customers will not easily be able to "pop and swap" a TN SIM into their devices to gain access to the enhanced data network. Dealers must activate the device on the network for subscribers in store. Pop and swap functionality is scheduled for release at a later time. Once a customer's account is active on the new network, they will not be allowed to go back to the old Sprint network.
Those on a legacy Boost Mobile plan wishing to gain access to the new network will likely need a new plan. All other customers will get to keep their rate plans. The following plans are allowed onto the expanded data network:
$35 3GB plan, or 6GB if purchased at Walmart
$50 Unlimited GIGs plan featuring 12GB of mobile hotspot
$60 Unlimited PLUS Gigs plan featuring 30GB of mobile hotspot
All plans include unlimited talk, text, and high-speed data unless stated otherwise. Taxes and fees are included in the prices shown. Promotional and other family plans allowed on the network include: 3 unlimited lines for $100, 4 unlimited lines for $100, 4 unlimited lines for $120, and the $30 plan with 2GB of data.
The 4 unlimited lines for $100 offer is one that is currently being featured by Boost Mobile. It gives those that switch over to the brand unlimited talk, text, and high-speed data plus 1GB of mobile hotspot for each line.
All these changes are taking place as the DISH Network prepares to take over the Boost Mobile brand from T-Mobile. The transition is expected to take place any time now. Some, such as Boost Mobile's founder Peter Adderton believe that the handoff could take place as early as Friday