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Helio

Is Helio store closing sign of sale?

We learn very on in school that correlation is not causation. So when Fierce Wireless sees a Helio store shut down, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the company is ready to go kaput. But considering what we’ve heard all week, it’s a strong possibility. The MVNO is said to be phasing out its retail operations, with the long-rumored merger with Virgin Mobile still just a rumor. According to the report by Fierce Wireless, Helio customers could find themselves Virgin customers in due time, whether there’s a merger or not.

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Helio going belly up, headed Virgin’s way?

We know that Virgin Mobile and Helio have been talking merger for a while. Nothing much has come of this since the initial rumors, but now we might see things start to move. Word is that Helio is shutting down many of its stores and kiosks nationwide. According to Engadget, this merger, in which little actual merging will take place, seems inevitable at this point.

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Helio continues widening net losses

It’s looking more and more like Helio will be the next MVNO to bite the dust. I really don’t want to see that happen, but given the unlimited calling revelation hitting the postpaid carriers, their days seem numbered. Their case wasn’t helped late last week, when Sprint, the company of which Helio is an MVNO, announced an all-in unlimited calling, texting, and data plan for $99 — incidentally, the same price Helio offers for a similar service. And now we’re seeing that Helio is continuing to lose money.

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Sprint’s unlimited plan puts heat on Helio

So instead of coming in at a lower price than their competitors for unlimited plans, Sprint decided to just offer a ton more services for the same price. They’re offering unlimited voice, text, Web, email, GPS navigation, and their own brand of mobile music and TV. Well now, doesn’t that sound a bit like the $99 all you can eat plan from Helio, an MVNO of that very Sprint network? Yes it does. Matt Hickey at CrunchGear picks up the issue to decide if Sprint is doing irreparable damage to its own MVNO.

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Earnings season: Helio down again

We’ve said before that earnings season kind of annoys us. The quarterly reports dominate the news, yet most of it means little to us unless we have a stake in the company. However, we’ve come to realize that earnings are a signal of a company’s strength at a given time. Under that definition, Helio is looking rather weak. They’re down again, to the tune of $92.3 million. The gross losses were much larger, as the company was able to cover $51.7 million of it with quarterly revenue. Still, the MVNO has a long way to go to sustainability.

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Helio offering discounts on handsets

Things haven’t been going too well for Helio lately. First they got the news that one of their funders, Earthlink, would “temporarily” cease their investment. That’s not good for an MVNO that sucks up money at a rate comparable to Amp’d. And then came the news of Disney Mobile’s demise which once again caused a media frenzy. As another yet-to-turn-a-profit MVNO, Helio was much mentioned, and not in glorifying tones. But they do have a quality service. Now they’re trying to draw people in with discounted prices.

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Earthlink halts funding of Helio

We’ve talked about it a couple of times before: There is a distinct possibility that Earthlink, struggling itself, could sever ties with Helio, its money-devouring MVNO. Helio is forecasted to lose roughly $350 million this year, which is not good for a dial-up Internet company that is restructuring in order to adapt to a broadband world. They’ve taken the first step towards that severance, announcing that they will cease funding the MVNO for the time being. This does not, though, necessarily signal the end for Helio.

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Uh oh, Helio: 100 jobs cut in “restructuring”

You might not be able to not call them a phone company for much longer. Okay, maybe that’s a glum prediction for the MVNO, but Earthlink’s current problems aren’t being helped much by the money-sucking cell provider. The company is making cuts, and even though they remain stead in their stance that Helio is safe for the time being, they won’t remain at full capacity. About 100 jobs have been cut from the company, which could be the precursor to a larger move.

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Earthlink cutting costs, could mean severance of Helio

Yeah, we dig Helio, even though they don’t have a prepaid deal (credit to reader Melissa E for prompting our call to customer service to verify that). In fact, if they did, we might just drop our current plan and switch right now. They have killer phones and excellent voice and data features, all for a not-so-expensive price, all services considered. However, like Amp’d, they’re a money-sucking machine. Their advantage is that they don’t have a big telecom like Verizon calling in a debt. The bad news is that they’re owned by Earthlink, a company that isn’t doing so hot these days.

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We’ll call it a phone: Helio adds another killer device

Helio, a service provider soon coming to PrepaidReviews.com, has launched a new multimedia phone: the Samsung Fin. It shares many features with the company’s Ocean model, though it is an ultra-thin flip phone, rather than a PDA.

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Making a splash in the iPhone’s wake: Helio

We’ve always had a bit of disdain for Helio’s whole “don’t call it a cell phone” campaign. We understand that they want to stand out from the pack, and yes, they do offer a unique service that exceeds that of most other cell providers. But in the end, it’s still a cell phone — just like the iPhone. In fact, the Helio Ocean has plenty in common with the iPhone, and they’re using that much to their benefit.

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