AT&T subsidiary Cricket Wireless and it's contract-free smartphones have found a new home in 2,800 locations, thanks to a new partnership with GameStop.
With Cricket's deal with RadioShack recently coming to a close, the wireless carrier's new contract with GameStop could bolster two companies in need of a shot in the arm.
When AT&T acquired Cricket Wireless' parent company, Leap Wireless International, it vowed to aggressively push prepaid phone service. Despite RadioShack ending its deal to brand and sell Cricket Wireless handsets, Jennifer Van Buskirk, president of Cricket Wireless, says the deal with GameStop will cement the wireless carrier as a mainstay in the United States' mobile market.
"Cricket Wireless' collaboration with GameStop accelerates our retail footprint across the U.S., solidifying our position as a national player," said Van Buskirk. "We are proud to join forces with GameStop and serve even more customers across the country with our affordable, no-annual-contract wireless service on a fast, reliable and nationwide 4G LTE network covering more than 300 million Americans."
For GameStop, the deal could be a boon for it's struggling core service of reselling electronics and video games. GameStop, embattled by digital sales from the likes of Amazon, has reworked it's trade-in program and expanded it to accept even more preowned tech.
As GameStop welcomes the first wireless carrier through its doors and invites consumers to sections dedicated to Cricket Wireless, the game retailer's customers will have the ability to put the value left in their old handsets into Cricket's latest offerings -- it would be a win for both Cricket and GameStop.
"GameStop is committed to providing our customers the greatest value and service to meet all their video game, technology and now wireless needs," said Tony Bartel, president of GameStop. "By offering Cricket Wireless service in our stores, we provide yet another great offering for our customers to get their favorite technology simply and affordably."
Cricket Wireless intends to begin stocking the 2,800 U.S. GameStop stores with its products at some point in October, completing the process before the month closes. Cricket Wireless and GameStop have been encouraged after testing out the relationship at a handful of GameStop stores.
GameStop and Cricket Wireless are releasing a virtual reality game to promote their partnership. Consumers who are interested in the game can check it out at CTIA's Super Mobility Week, which runs from Sept. 9-11 in Las Vegas. There's little indication as to the game's premise, beyond helping consumers "experience the simplicity, value and power behind Cricket Wireless services." CTIA is an international wireless communications industry trade group.