This Virgin Mobile FAQ Is Honest, But Not Very Helpful

Reader Aiden was considering buying a Virgin Mobile phone, but he had some questions about their Studio V program. (It allows you to make wallpapers and ringtones and sell them for $0.10 in airtime credit to other Virgin Mobile users.) The FAQ he found was honest, but not very helpful.

I am looking into a new Virgin Mobile prepaid phone after my old one broke awhile ago. While browsing their site, I noticed an ad for one of their services, “Studio V,” claiming that if you design a phone background and people download it you can make money. Naturally, I looked into it.

After not finding anything major referring to it, I referred to their help pages. I located its file, and, well let’s just say someone fell asleep at the wheel. I got enough information, but I certainly got a kick out of some of their FAQ responses on the page…Virgin Mobile has no idea how to use their own product!


Virgin Mobile Help


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  1. I bought a Y phone recently and it wasn’t even wallpaper-compatible. I returned it and got my $X back.

    Talk about phoning it in.

  2. Brain.wav says:

    Only X, Y, and Z phones? Dang, I knew I shouldn’t have skimped and bought a W.

  3. WiglyWorm must cease and decist says:

    Obviously, the web-designers template got posted instead of the real thing. Hillarious though. Always nice to start the morning off with a laugh.

  4. razremytuxbuddy says:

    Isn’t Virgin Mobile a Sprint company?

  5. Eldritch says:

    Wow. What ever happened to good old “page under construction” placeholders?

  6. ajc308 says:

    Maybe “V” is a placeholder too and they haven’t even come up with what they are going to name their Studio software.

    Studio V cost $X and works on Phone Y. Fits the pattern wouldn’t ya say?

    (laying on the sarcasm thick)

  7. BoomerFive says:

    @WiglyWorm, Exactly right.

  8. weakdome says:

    Love it.
    Way better than Lorem Ipsum.

  9. tedyc03 says:

    Ok. As a web developer, I’m thinking someone should get fired. Now. Seriously.

    This is what happens when you let idiots use version control software.

  10. leastcmplicated says:

    its funny because the rest of the questions are answered on that faq… u’d think they’d just put something like “coming soon”

  11. amyschiff says:

    with the growing use of content management systems for maintaining websites, the “page under construction” placeholders are less useful. Web designers will set up a page template so that the client can then go in and easily modify the content.

    The placeholder can’t be used because the designer can’t assume the client will know how to link up to the real page when they are finished writing their content–let alone format it properly. The lesson is that a site should be really intensively reviewed before launch…

  12. stanfrombrooklyn says:

    Do not – DO NOT – buy a Virgin Mobile fun. They make it IMPOSSIBLE to cancel your account. I bought one for a temporary employee. After 3 months, we no longer needed it. I will give anyone a $1 million fake reward if you can go to and find anywhere where they tell you how to cancel service. Even if you search in their search box “cancel service” or something similar, you get no help. Finally we had to call their 1-800 #. They give you 5 options. The first 4 are related to purchasing a Virgin phone. The 5th is “Other”. We were on hold for over an hour. Finally, someone came on from India and did everything possible to have us continue. I finaly told her that I would reverse charges on our credit card if she didn’t cancel the phone.It was a nightmare.

  13. heavylee-again says:

    @stanfrombrooklyn: Did you try logging in to the phone service’s online account to cancel there?

  14. brianala says:

    @stanfrombrooklyn: You can have a monthly plan, or you can change to pay as you go. Log into the online account and change it from the plan to the pay as you go option, and then just stop using it.

  15. Tallanvor says:

    Never use any Virgin products. Virgin is crap. Cable, DSL, Mobile, their “Zavvi” stores. Everything.

  16. sleepydumbdude says:

    Why would you need to cancel it anyways. Just go to the site and turn off any autotop up options and turn it off and throw it in a drawer somewhere until the minutes run out. If you are never going to use it anymore just break in half and throw it in the trash.

  17. wheresmysamuraii says:

    I had a virgin mobile phone for a long time, a few years, and found myself in need of a non pay per minute phone (had to start using my cell for work and got rid of my land line). To cancel a pay per minute phone, all you have to do is stop putting money on it. If you have it set up to add money to the account every time it gets low, go to the website and change it. If you have one of their plans for so many minutes a month for so many dollars, I wish you luck, as I have no idea how those work.

  18. sketchy says:

    @sleepydumbdude: Or throw it in a phone recycling box at Staples or a computer store, or whatnot.

  19. mariospants says:

    @stanfrombrooklyn: “They make it IMPOSSIBLE to cancel your account… I will give anyone a $1 million fake reward if you can go to and find anywhere where they tell you how to cancel service.”

    I won’t criticize your lack of skill, but next time do this: call their sales line and ask to speak to an agent (no waiting on hold there) or go to Sprint/Virgin store (no waiting on hold there either). Tell them you’re moving to Canada and they’ll thank you for being a customer, mention they have an aunt who lives in Sudbury and kill your account on the spot.

  20. jeff303 says:

    This looks like an entry for []

  21. Christopher says:

    No, they’re an MVNO that uses the Sprint network.

  22. MrEvil says:

    @razremytuxbuddy: No Virgin Mobile is part of Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin group. In the United States they use Sprint for infastructure. Sprint owns the spectrum and the towers, but Virgin sells and markets the phones and provides customer service.

  23. MrEvil says:

    @CBragg: aughhh, you posted your comment while I was researching mine…curses!

  24. cnosal says:

    Thanks for pointing this out. We are in the process of updating our FAQs. Studio V is available to Virgin Mobile USA customers with all handsets except the older Flasher.

    Corinne Nosal
    Corporate Communications
    Virgin Mobile USA

  25. razremytuxbuddy says:

    Thanks for clarifying, CBragg & MrEvil. I used to have service from another prepaid company that used the Sprint network. It was called Liberty Wireless. It was the best, most hassle-free wireless service I’ve ever had, and I wish I could have stayed with them. It made me a believer in prepaid services, but from what I’m reading here, not all prepaid services are equal. I’d recommend trying Liberty Wireless if you need the Sprint network but can’t handle Sprint. But beware–if you are ever in an area off the Sprint network, roaming with Liberty Wireless was either a very expensive hassle, or just not available.


    As a contrast to all the Virgin Mobile naysayers, I’ve had a VM account for the past 5 years & have had 4 of their phones during that time. (I’ve had multiple phones because I upgraded, not because of any problems.) The phone service has always been excellent, and their FAQs for other topics have been helpful. I’d recommend them over AT&T GoPhone any day.

  27. astruc says:

    I’ve been using a Cyclops for Virgin for a year or so. I love it. Their phone support is lacking but the phone and minutes are cheap enough and there’s no contract. I will never sign another cel phone contract.

  28. YokoDadlet says:

    My husband figured out how to use it, and bought a ring tone and background image for his phone. The connection was disconnected in the middle of the transfer of the ring tone, and the file for the image was corrupted when he received it. I looked all over the website for a way to resend something we already paid for, but once it’s sent, it’s sent.

    We contacted customer service, and they said if it doesn’t work, we get an automatic refund. We only got a refund on one. We were only shorted $2.50, so I’m not wasting any more time on it.

    I guess with Virgin Mobile, you just have to cross your fingers and hope the transfer goes through the first time, or you’re out of luck!

  29. ellastar says:

    @mariospants: Sprint doesn’t have anything to do with Virgin Mobile except for the fact that Virgin uses Sprint’s towers. Going into a Sprint store will accomplish nothing, and as far as I know, Virgin Mobile only has retailers selling their phones, no actual stores. Your suggestion about calling up their customer service is most likely the only way to do it.

  30. louveciennes says:

    @stanfrombrooklyn: You don’t have to cancel service on temporary phones. They will go out of service themselves if you don’t add any minutes to it for 6 weeks.

  31. louveciennes says:

    @astruc: Nor I. I’ve had Virgin Mobile prepaid with a Kyocera Flipback for about a year, and I’ve got no complaints. Steve Jobs can kiss my rear end, I won’t touch his precious iPhone until he allows no-contract ownership.

  32. TechnoDestructo says:


    After the quarterly billing errors with AT&T, my thus-far-trouble-free service with Virgin Mobile has been quite welcome.

    That cancellation comment has me concerned, though.

  33. rlee says:

    VM user for over a year now. No complaints about service, but as a BabyBoomer I feel the urge to reach into the phone and smother their “Simone” automated response system for trying to be so hip and cool and froody it’s positively painful.

  34. kellyd says:

    I love everything about VM. The pay as you go. The phone–mine’s the Slice, and it’s awesome-thin. The service is great. I LOVE Simone, the answer-bot. Favorite thing about them: I called them to order a replacement charger after my dog chewed through the cord on mine. The friendly guy helped me place my order, then informed me that my phone was under warranty and I was entitled to a replacement accessory during the warranty period, so it would be free. AND they mailed it Express. (He was not in India either.) Awesome company!

  35. mrearly2 says:

    Dunno, but I think Virgin uses the Sprint network (y’know, the cell antennae, etc.)