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With the recent announcement that Walmart will now be entering the cell phone service business, many consumers are considering switching to the new low-cost unlimited service provided by Walmart.
Walmart has long been a leader in the sale of unlocked cell phones for other providers, including Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint; this move will make Walmart cell phones even more attractive to many consumers.
The Walmart service will be known as Straight Talk; two service plans have been announced to date.
The first is set to offer consumers 1,000 nationwide calling minutes, 1,000 text messages, and 30 MB of data transfer at a monthly rate of $30; the second offers unlimited nationwide calling, unlimited texting, and unlimited data transfer for $45 monthly.
This represents significant savings over other cellular service providers in the U.S.
Walmart Straight Talk cellular service will be provided through a joint venture between Walmart and TracFone Wireless, which has an established nationwide network.
Walmart cell phones designed to complement the new service include the LG 220 flip phone for entry-level users; the Samsung 451, which features a QWERTY keyboard and enhanced features for high-end functions, and the LG Slider 290, a mid-range phone that includes GPS and Bluetooth capability.
For demanding cellular users, the Straight Talk Finesse touch-screen cell phone offers a wide range of elite functions including high-speed data transfer at an equally elite price tag; the phone retails for over $300.
Walmart also stocks a wide range of other cell phones and services, including prepaid plans from Verizon, Alltel, Virgin Mobile, and a wide range of other providers.
Cell phones available from Walmart include models from most major manufacturers, including BlackBerry, Motorola, Nokia, Palm, Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony Ericsson.
Many of these are available at a steep discount or free of charge when consumers sign up for a cellular service contract with a cell phone service provider.
For unlocked cell phones without a contract, Walmart typically offers lower prices than competing specialty and electronics stores, making it an outstanding choice for most consumers in the market for a new cellular phone or service.