As people continued to search for the cheapest way to stay connected, they turned their attention to Simple Freedom cell phones. This offered a great alternative to some of the larger and better known carriers, but it ultimately could not compete in such a market.
What Happened to Simple Freedom Cell Phones?
The main reason why people considered Simple Freedom cell phones in the first place was because the wireless carrier offered some of the most affordable rates in the nation. The cell phone selection itself may have left something to be desired, but this is true of most of the cheaper prepaid offerings on the market.
Rather than continue to operate it as a separate and unique identity, Alltel Wireless chose to migrate its Simple Freedom Wireless customers starting in Summer 2006.
This transition period was eventually completed in 2007 when Simple Freedom Wireless was fully merged with the Alltel "U Prepaid" service. The net result was the new Alltel "U Personalized Prepaid" service.
Alltel U Personalized Prepaid
Existing customers with Simple Freedom cell phones were transitioned over to the new Alltel service, making it relatively easy to "re-activate" their Simple Freedom handsets. As before, they had the ability to have no contract plans and choose from a variety of calling plan options.
The prepaid plans from Alltel U Personalized Prepaid are broadly broken down into three main categories: pay per minute, pay per day, and pay per month. All of these can be accessed through the company website or by calling Alltel's Customer Care line.
Transitioning Again to Verizon
As if the Simple Freedom customers weren't already thrown into a tailspin with the transition over to Alltel's prepaid service, they were once again moved to another provider when Alltel was fundamentally acquired by Verizon Wireless.
This will be dependent on certain service areas and individual situations, but most Alltel customers have been moved over to Verizon Wireless and this includes the prepaid customers who originally used Simple Freedom cell phones.
Acquisitions like these appear to indicate that smaller carriers have a more challenging time surviving in the cell phone market, eventually getting acquired by larger, more powerful companies. It was only a matter of time before Simple Freedom effectively closed its independent doors.
Sample Prepaid Cell Phones
To get a sense of what phones would be roughly equivalent to a modern-day Simple Freedom, the best path would be to look at the phones available through Verizon Wireless. The prepaid service from Verizon has effectively taken over the business from Simple Freedom, so customers who would have once signed up with Simple Freedom may now choose to get their prepaid cell phone service from Verizon instead.
Not surprisingly, the prepaid phones available from Verizon are decidedly cheaper in scope. The features are limited, but the price is a fair bit lower than a higher-end smartphone or other premium device. Among the prepaid Verizon phones are the following:
- Samsung Intensity: Best suited for text message enthusiasts, the Intensity has a regular numeric keypad, but it can be slide open to reveal a full QWERTY keyboard too. It can connect to the V CAST Music (with Rhapsody) service too.
- Samsung Smooth: A simple flip-style cell phone, the Smooth features an external display so you can see who is calling without having to open the phone. Other highlights include Bluetooth, VGA camera, speakerphone, and mobile web capabilities.
- LG Accolade: Another simple clamshell phone, the Accolade has a slightly better 1.3-megapixel camera to go along with its Bluetooth, speakerphone, VZ Navigator, and Family Locator.