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BYO(S)D – Progress report and wider beta launch announced

With customer meetups, conferences, travel and all, it’s been a couple of weeks since we offered a proper update on our BYO(S)D progress. Let’s set that right.

First off, we’ve been asked several times about the activation fee for BYO(S)D-ing your device to Ting. There isn’t one. Once your BYO(S)D is activated on the Ting network, it will act like (indeed, it is) a regular Ting device sharing pooled minutes, messages and megabytes at the Ting standard $6/mo. per device. Beyond that, there’s no cost associated with BYO(S)D.

Much to report

Since we released our video detailing the complicated and highly technical process for the first ever BYO(S)D, we’ve made some further leaps forward.

We’ve brought over dozens Sprint devices in our alpha testing phases and we’ll begin rolling out our beta next week. With the first phase beta we’ll be counting into the hundreds of devices BYO(S)D’d to Ting. Our next major milestone will be when we’re counting into the thousands.

The alpha testing has helped us focus in on some of the issues, roadblocks and unforeseen problems that bringing an eligible, inactive Sprint device over to the Ting network can present. That’s kinda the point of alpha testing.

Our alpha testers have challenged us with everything from active devices to ancient devices, number ports and much more. These are precisely the kinds of scenarios BYO(S)D will face when it is released more widely.

The ambition

Our goal is to offer everyone that expressed interest in the Ting BYO(S)D beta by filling out the BYO(S)D beta sign up survey the opportunity to port their device(s) as soon as possible. More exact timeframes will become clear as we progress through this early beta.

On this note, we’ll be getting to everyone that signed up for the beta as soon as we possibly can; we’re hard at work. Please watch your inbox and don’t call us, we’ll call you 😉

BYO(S)D will be as easy as entering your inactive Sprint device’s ESN into our BYO(S)D web app and changing your MMS and possibly 4G settings. 4G WiMAX that is; LTE is not supported at present. Not to worry: We’ll walk you through it.

3G Sprint devices will become 3G Ting devices in short order. 4G WiMAX Sprint devices however can take up to 24 hours to provision. Realistically, if you started the process before turning in for the evening, your formerly Sprint WiMAX device should be a Ting WiMAX device by the time you wake up.

Once we’re through this early beta phase, we’ll have the BYO(S)D process perfected for “simple” activations which means inactive devices from among the top five most popular Sprint devices comprising around 80% of the BYO(S)D-able devices by volume. Those devices are:

  1. HTC EVO 4G
  2. Samsung Galaxy SII (Epic Touch 4G)
  3. LG Optimus S
  4. HTC EVO 3D 4G
  5. Motorola Photon 4G (not the Motorola Photon Q)

For devices not on this list, the BYO(S)D web app that we’ll be beta testing would, in all likelihood, still work as planned and our testers will be welcome to use it to bring over a device that’s not explicitly supported. For these devices, we’ll be requesting your feedback during the beta phases so we can build out our support to cover the remaining 20% of devices.

Who’s out of the (early) running?

  • Devices that are already active on Sprint cannot yet make the move.
  • The blacklisted devices we’ve mentioned before (Google Nexus devices, iPhone, BlackBerry, PTT handsets).
  • LTE devices can not be BYO(S)D’d at this time.
  • Devices reported lost or stolen to Sprint cannot be brought over.

We are sending out an updated BYO(S)D beta update survey to help us get the BYO(S)D ball rolling. If you opted not to receive further BYO(S)D updates by email (or really, even if you did), you can also find that survey embedded below.

Final note: Some 600 of the thousands of people that filled our our initial BYO(S)D beta sign up answered “no” to whether or not they wanted to bring an eligible, inactive Sprint device to Ting. Thanks for taking the time to fill out the sign up survey but, in the immortal words of Jerry Seinfeld, what’s the deal with that? 😉

As always, we’ll keep you posted as soon as we have new and important information. Until then, watch your inbox for a BYO(S)D beta invite (no promises at this early beta stage though). We’ll get invites out to everyone as soon as we possibly can. Thanks for your patience.