FreedomPop launched in late 2012 and ever since has been on the rise and has already hit over one million customers. The company eventually added 3G and LTE support running across Sprint’s network, with a mix of free and inexpensive rate plans. FreedomPop also noted that it is in discussions with multiple major global carriers for strategic partnership across other markets.
FreedomPop has recently secured strategic financing from Intel Capital, Intel’s global investment organization, to expand its FreedomPop branded smartphone lineup. FreedomPop CEO Stephen Stokols said the phone will run Google’s Android platform and will be manufactured by a well known OEM which he declined to reveal. The device will use Intel’s SoFIA chipset platform. It plans to launch on the network of a second U.S. carrier partner which it plans to reveal in 2016 and the device will supposedly sell for a little under $200.
The device will be powered by Intel’s cost-effective SoFIA Atom x3 processors and be optimized for Wi-Fi use. The chips, which support Android and Windows systems, are meant for entry-level devices and feature 3G or 4G connectivity, depending on the chip. It will have 13 MP front and 5 MP rear cameras as well as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC and GNSS.
FreedomPop phone will be able to seamlessly switch between cellular networks and Wi-Fi hotspots. Engadget reports when connected to mobile data, it will supposedly be free.
The carrier are offering certified pre-owned models with massive discounts but they do include support for LTE services which runs across Sprint’s domestic network.
Their super deals offer one month of free unlimited voice calling, text messaging and 1 gigabyte of cellular data, after which customers will transition to FreedomPop’s standard free offer of 500 megabytes of cellular data, 500 text messages and 500 calling minutes.
FreedomPop announced that it had raised $30M more in new financing, which it says will go to accelerate its growth in the U.S., and expand its free mobile service. The funding was led by Partech Ventures, and also included DCM Capital and Mangrove Capital.
FreedomPop also said it is adding a new strategic investor, which will be announced separately. Stokols says the new funding comes despite multiple M&A offers and speculation over a sale of the service; instead the company claims it declined multiple M&A offers for the company, instead of a possible sale, it is expected to grow new opportunities.