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AT&T continues Cricket retail expansion in prepaid battle with Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint

Cricket Wireless services are now set to be offered at 3,400 GameStop locations, which will include ‘dedicated Cricket’ salesperson

AT&T Mobility’s Cricket Wireless prepaid brand is set to expand its presence at retailer GameStop in a move the carrier said will make the outlet its largest single distributor. The deal calls for products and services to be available at 3,400 GameStop locations across the country. Those locations will also employ a “dedicated Cricket Consultant” trained on all things related to the service.
“By expanding the number of stores and having dedicated Cricket consultants in certain GameStop locations, we’re continuing to add to the great Cricket experience customers already receive today in GameStop,” said Dave Fine, VP of sales at Cricket. “It’s this type of focus on the customer that makes our retail relationship with GameStop a perfect fit.”
Playing into GameStop’s other focus as an outlet for video games, some retail locations also accept trade-ins on pre-owned video games to use as payment for Cricket devices or services.
The expanded distribution follows the initial deal between the two entities signed in 2014, which called for Cricket products and services to be offered through 2,800 GameStop locations. The initial agreement came on the heels of AT&T Mobility relaunching the brand following its acquisition of Leap Wireless. Cricket has since become a growth driver for AT&T, with the carrier’s prepaid business posting 500,000 net additions during the first quarter.
AT&T Mobility in April announced a distribution deal for the prepaid brand at nearly 2,000 Aaron’s retail outlets, pushing its total presence to more than 12,000 retail locations nationwide.
The prepaid space has remained hotly contested by domestic carriers, with nearly all having updated pricing or distribution models in recent months.
Verizon Wireless last month updated its pricing models to make permanent a previously promotional offer of increased data on some rate plans. AT&T Mobility recently bolstered its GoPhone efforts, while T-Mobile US in April unveiled a new multiline promotion for its MetroPCS brand targeting customers porting their lines in from a rival carrier. Even Sprint, which like Verizon Wireless posted prepaid net losses for its latest quarter, has been juggling its Boost Mobile prepaid offerings and said it plans to revamp its Virgin Mobile USA platform at some point this year.
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