San Diego - Prepaid carrier Cricket Communications has begun offering phones and service through Kmart for the first time.
The introduction into more than 2,100 Kmart locations nationwide continues a major retail expansion begun last year. The carrier also sells through Target, Best Buy and Walmart.
The Kmart deal does not include Cricket's prepaid iPhone, which is available only in Cricket's company-owned stores and select dealers, excluding national retail outlets, in 60 markets where the carrier operates its network.
Four handsets will be available with at launch, including the Samsung Vitality smartphone at a suggested $199 and the $129 ZTE Score smartphone, both offering Muve Music unlimited music downloads.
Kmart customers can also choose from two feature phones, the Huawei Pillar at $69 and the Samsung Chrono at $39. The Pillar features a QWERTY keyboard. The Chrono is a flip phone.
With the $55/month Muve Music Smartphone rate plan, users get unlimited song downloads, ringtones, and ringback tones as well as nationwide calling; unlimited text, picture, video messaging and 3G mobile data; mobile video; data backup; and 411 assistance.
Both feature phones will be available on a Cricket PayGo service plan at $25 per month. The plan includes unlimited text, picture and video messaging and unlimited mobile web along with 300 voice minutes per month.