Ideal Mobile is a small MVNO that has been operating for roughly 5 years. I had not been aware of them but recently they contacted me to inform me of their business and to tell me a little bit about their history. Initially their service was focused on providing small businesses with mobile connections for their staff. The company planned to launch as a full blown MVNO for the consumer operating on the Sprint network in the 4th quarter of 2013. Judging by their website though, it appears they didn't hit their full launch until later in 2014.
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Many providers of prepaid phone plans in the market use out of box software to get started in the industry. Often times in the case of Sprint, this software and help is provided by them which in ways can make it easier for an MVNO to start up. In the case of Ideal Mobile though, their entire billing platform was built by themselves from scratch and they pieced it together to connect directly with Sprint. This in house billing system allows Ideal Mobile to adapt to a quickly changing market as well as to maintain good customer support by bypassing some of Sprint's systems.
Summary of Plans
In terms of plans offered, Ideal Mobile seems to be on the expensive side compared to other MVNOs. Plans range in price from $40-$60 and include unlimited talk, text and data, as well as international texting, although data gets throttled at varying thresholds depending on which plan is chosen. The $40 plan includes a rather paltry 600 mb of LTE, $50 includes 1 GB and $60 2.5 GB with throttling to 1G or 2G speeds thereafter depending on your area. One of the reasons for their higher pricing compared to some of their competitors is that they appear to offer roaming. Still, hopefully they can negotiate some better pricing agreements with Sprint moving forward, or they may have some difficulty attracting new customers. Speaking of moving forward, I'm told the company has plans to expand their offerings by adding international calling plans to major Central and South American countries to help meet the demands of their Latino customers. Hopefully they don't come with increased expenses based on what they currently offer. A summary of Ideal Mobile's current offerings is in the infographic below.