Unlike the other three national carriers, bringing your own phone (BYOP) to a Sprint prepaid brand has always been difficult and in many cases impossible. Virgin Mobile flat out blocks activation of all non-Virgin Mobile phones. Even Sprint and Boost phones can not be used on Virgin Mobile,allthough Boost, Sprint and Virgin all run of the same Sprint network . Boost has a slightly more lenient policy, since 2012 Boost has allowed a small, arbitrary and frequently changing list of Sprint phones to be activated on Boost.
Last month Boost opened the BYOD door a crack wider. A reader sent me copies of a message that Boost sent to its dealers (images top and bottom, click image to view full-size). Since November 18, Boost dealers have been able to activate certain non-Sprint phones on Boost. According to the message the following phones are eligible:
Verizon (including MVNOs) iPhone 5, 5s, SE, 7 and 7 Plus
Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile (including MVNOS) iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s and 6s Plus
Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile (including MVNOS) Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge (reflashing with Sprint software required)
Starting sometime this month, Sprint will also begin allowing the Motorola G4 and G4 Plus.
To be used on Boost, a non Sprint phone must be unlocked. A Boost SIMs is required. The SIMs are normally priced at $10 each, but now through January 2 they are free to customers activating non-Sprint phones at Boost dealers.
There's a new page on the Boost customer facing website describing the npn-Sprint BYOP program. On that page Boost says that only Boost dealers can activate non-Sprint phones, activation is not currently available online or through Boost Customer care.
Sprint MVNO's got the ability to activate non-Sprint phones over a year ago. In addition to the phones listed above, MVNOs can also activate the Nexus 5, 6, 5x and 6p, which still are not allowed on Boost. I have no idea why Sprint, which is struggling to survive, took so long to allow potential customers to us their Sprint network compatible phones on Boost and still blocks BYOP on Virgin.