Dish teases launch of postpaid Boost Infinite

Taking the industry's over-used term “unlimited” to the extreme, Dish Network teased the upcoming launch of its postpaid brand, Boost Infinite, during the company’s analyst day in Las Vegas on Tuesday.

“I’m not here to slam unlimited plans,” said Dish EVP of Retail Wireless Stephen Stokols. “Unlimited is here to stay,” and the days of having to watch your data consumption are long gone. Americans like the flexibility they get with unlimited plans.

Yet the U.S. market is ripe for change and it has been for a while, he said. It’s the third most expensive country in the world, and consumers pay for a lot of data that they’ll never use with “unlimited” plans everywhere.

Dish in 2020 closed the $1.4 billion acquisition of Boost Mobile that was a condition of the government’s approval of the T-Mobile/Sprint merger. Separately, it also acquired Ting and Republic Wireless customers.  


He said what got a lot of press since Dish’s acquisition of Boost is the very public dispute it had with T-Mobile over what Dish considered a premature shutdown of the Sprint CDMA network. A lot of Boost customers relied on that CDMA network, and Dish thought it had at least about 18-24 months more to orchestrate the transition of customers off of that.

Now, “we’re pretty much through the hard part of that,” he said. There are some stragglers, but a lot of effort went into that and it’s in the rearview mirror for the most part.  

Upgrading to faster platform

What was less publicized was the migration of customers off the 10-year-old, antiquated slow platform, which ran Boost for years. They’re moving it onto Dish’s digital platform now, but the real impact there was the inability to move at a competitive pace. For example, to introduce a new rate plan on the old system, it would take months. With the new one, it takes days or even hours. That migration is important as it moves into the second half of this year, he said.

Boost Infinite Dish

The shift to eSIM devices also means that if a consumer wants to move from one operator to another, they can do it from the handset in their hand. That scares a lot of incumbents but as a challenger in the market, it gives Dish a lot of upside, according to Stokols.

The company plans to move from competitive pricing to aggressive pricing to disruptive pricing, he said. “I can’t give you the actual price points, but let me just say there’s a difference in those different tiers,” he said.

They’re not looking to solely disrupt on price, however. “We’re looking to create a unique, differentiated product experience,” in a way that leverages Web 3.0 dynamics.

Without giving away the whole playbook, he said to imagine turning unused data into a real digital currency. “Imagine if you could leverage decentralized financing,” to get the latest iconic devices. “Imagine if there was a wireless carrier that actually paid you back.”

The Verge noted that “leveraging decentralized financing” sounds a lot like “paying for something with cryptocurrency,” but a lot of specifics remain unknown.

Stokols said a new kind of postpaid will be launched later this fall, with unique differentiation for the customer experience, called Boost Infinite.

Boost launched some 20 years ago around the theme of doing things differently. It was operated for about 10 years under Sprint ownership, and it remains one of the most recognized brands. “We’re going to take Boost from the prepaid market to the mass market,” Stokols said.

It’s worth noting that he said they aren’t going to try to create a new brand from scratch, but it will be a “new kind of postpaid," he said.