Virgin Mobile, on Monday unveiled a variety of prepaid BlackBerry Internet Services (BIS) plans for SA, with the introduction of seven- and 14-day options to supplement the usual 30-day BIS service plan.
BIS, proven to be a popular low-cost solution in emerging markets in particular, provides users with access to the Internet and up to 10 supported corporate and personal e-mail accounts, including e-mail accounts such as 8tamail, Yahoo Mail and Gmail, as well as instant messaging service BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) and social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. It also provides access to the range of mobile applications on BlackBerry App World.
Virgin Mobile has introduced two new options for its prepaid subscribers, namely a R19 option for seven days and a R29 option for 14 days, in addition to the standard R59 for 30 days.
Virgin Mobile’s prepaid offering previously included R10 free airtime for every R30 paid airtime used, double airtime free upon the first recharge, Virgin-to-Virgin call rates in SA of 99c per minute and true per-second peak and off-peak call rates to other networks.
To access Virgin Mobile’s new prepaid BIS plans, customers will need to purchase a Virgin Mobile prepaid SIM card, insert it into a BlackBerry smartphone, recharge with Virgin Mobile airtime and then enter the appropriate USSD string for the required BIS plan.
Virgin Mobile CEO Steve Bailey says it is encouraging to see that smartphones and associated services like BIS are starting to penetrate the prepaid market. “We expect the simplicity and convenience of our smaller denomination BIS offerings will appeal to prepaid subscribers who do not require this service throughout the month.”