San Diego - The first of two new national retailers that will sell Cricket-branded prepaid wireless service is Best Buy Mobile, which will begin selling Cricket PayGo services in 434 locations on Sept. 27, Cricket parent Leap Wireless announced.
Last week, Leap announced plans to expand distribution to bring its roster of national retailers to four from two. The carrier hasn't disclosed the name of the fourth national retailer.
Earlier this year, the carrier tapped its first two national retailers, Walmart and Dollar General, which offer the carrier's PayGo plans. Previously, the company sold its prepaid services and phones only through company-owned stores, Cricket-branded stores owned by third parties, and indirect retailers, mainly independent wireless specialists.
Best Buy Mobile and the other national retailer coming online soon will offer existing PayGo plans, which let consumers prepay for unlimited wireless services at $1, $2 or $3 per day. The two retailers will also exclusively offer two new monthly unlimited-use PAYGo plans priced at $40 and $45 per month.
Leap's CDMA 1x EV-DO network operates in 34 states.
At Best Buy Mobile, three Cricket phones will be available. They are the $149 Samsung Messager II with a slider QWERTY keyboard, the $89.99 Samsung MyShot II, and newly launched $49.99 Cricket Captr flip phone. Best Buy Mobile will also offer an assortment of compatible accessories and Cricket PayGo top-up cards.
The $40 plan includes unlimited talk and U.S. long distance from within Leap's footprint, domestic and international text and picture messaging, and free roaming in Cricket's premium extended calling area, which consists of 4,600 cities and towns serviced through roaming partners. The Premium calling area effectively extends the reach of Leap's network. The $45 plan adds unlimited mobile Web and directory assistance. Prices for both plans include voicemail, call waiting, caller ID and three-way calling over Cricket's 3G EV-DO network.