Oct 01 AT 3:09 PM Taylor Wimberly 12 Comments

Sprint to offer Sanyo Zio Android phone for free on contract

The Sanyo Zio is coming to Sprint stores soon and it will be the cheapest Android phone the carrier has ever offered. When Cricket Wireless launched this phone back in August it retailed for $249, which happens to be the exact subsidy that Sprint offers on their current Android phones. This means that if you are willing to sign a 2-year contract with Sprint, you can take home the Sanyo Zio for absolutely free.

Crickets’s version of the Zio shipped with Android 1.6, but we hear that Sprint has upgraded the device to Android 2.1. Kudos to Sprint for refusing to sell any new Android 1.6 phones (unless you count that Nextel Motorola i1)!

The Zio features a 3.5 inch display and 600 MHz Qualcomm MSM7227 processor (same as what you would find in the HTC Aria, Legend, and most mid-range Android phones), so this is actually a pretty decent offering when you compare it to other “free” phones like the upcoming Motorola Ciena.

Minus the Android 1.6 OS, I’ve actually heard pretty good things about the Cricket Zio and I’m interested to get my hands on Sprint’s version. We have a briefing with Kyocera Sanyo next week at CTIA, so check back soon for a hands-on report of this device.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

    Most Tweeted This Week

  • http://Website Yossarian

    I bet Boost will get this next.

    • http://Website @neidlinger

      IIRC Boost Mobile is iDen, not CDMA

      • http://Website nismopwr16

        boost uses both iden and cdma.

      • http://Website Yossarian

        9 out of the 19 Boost Mobile phones run off CDMA.

  • http://Website tyler

    I hope this boosts Android usage. It’s nice to see it coming put out with 2.1

  • http://Website John

    Hopefully they’ve fixed the touch screen, if its even fixable. Thats one of the biggest problems i’ve noticed when playing with it. The problem with the touchscreen when something is near the sides. Like trying to hit letters on the keyboard that’s close to the edge, or trying to Longpress on a icon on the home screen to move it somewhere else or to delete it.

  • http://Website jayy336

    Are the quality of these sanyo phones good??

  • http://droidandroidgames.com/ AndroidGames

    Sanyo is actually makes products of good quality, but is often neglected because it was famous for their stereo systems and radio, and you know, it was acquired by Panasonic in 2009, and Panasonic is not a mobile superstar.
    Anyway, looking forward to see your hands-on, cheap Androids of good quality are rare if not absent right now.

  • http://Website phoneduder

    2 things.

    1. this phone is made by Kyocera and marketed by Sanyo.

    2. Sprint doesnt have an “android subsidy” typically with phones that are $249.99 they end up being $49.99 after MIR. This article has no credibility since it was not confirmed for pricing.

    This is how it breaks down

    $249.99 – $150.00 Equals $99.99 – $50 MIR = $49.99

    Simply put.

    However if it does end up being free then SWEET i will buy one just for the awesomeness of having a cool phone for free.

  • http://Website AndroMan7

    It seems that Sprint will be receiving the devices with 1.6 ver. of Andriod, but hopefuly it will be updated to 2.1+ by the time it could get to consumers….

    Almost at activation….:)

  • JNash8132

    I just got mine, didnt pay a red cent, not even for shipping radioshack.com

  • http://Sprint Tammy

    How good is the sprint Ziio phone