US wireless carrier Sprint has announced launching a new programme, the International Value Roaming plan, to provide its subscribers the advantage of unlimited text and data across 15 countries in Latin America, Europe and Asia.
The 15 countries in which Sprint users would henceforth be able to send text messages or surf the internet without any additional charge, are - Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Japan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Russia, South Korea, Spain, and the UK.
Announcing its new International Value Roaming plan, Sprint said that the plan offered subscribers the ability to use unlimited messaging as also 2G data while travelling outside the US. However, for making calls on international roaming, subscribers would need to pay 20 cents per minute.
Sprint has packaged the new International Value Roaming plan along with its Unlimited Plus Plan, which is exclusive to Sprint customers using Samsung's newest Galaxy S6 and Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge handsets.
However, for customers who had subscribed to a different Sprint domestic plan, the International Value Roaming plan could be activated by visiting a Sprint store or through the company's International Value Roaming page.
Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said the continuous feedback from its customers indicated how important it was to travel without the fear of high roaming charges.
The company therefore launched free data roaming and Wi-Fi. Latin America, Europe and Japan were only the beginning. He added, new countries would be added to ensure customers could use their device virtually wherever they travelled.
However, according to commentators, continuous feedback from customers was at least partly due to the fact that T-Mobile had introduced a very similar plan 18 months ago, and Sprint's fell short of its competitor's.
T-Mobile's offering essentially allow Simple Choice subscribers to freely text and receive data at 2G speeds like Sprint, but users did not risk being disconnected and unable to make contact with their friends and family.
Customers could, if they wanted, pay for 3G speeds, with $15 buying 100MB of data to be used in one day, $25 for 200MB of data for use in one week, and $50 for 500MB to be used in two weeks. The price was the same for both Sprint and T-Mobile.
The difference was that Sprint's offering was only available in 15 countries, while T-Mobile's was available across a 120 countries.