Competition is really heating up in the low cost, off-contract smartphone market these days. Motorola's Moto G, revealed just last week, is the meteor that could potentially change the landscape here in the US when it strikes early next year, offering specs that far exceed anything we've been conditioned to expect for $179. But that's the future. As for now, Americans looking for an affordable but capable off-contract handset can now pick up the HTC Desire (or, more specifically, the HTC Desire 601) from Virgin Mobile for $279.


The Desire's Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 dual-core 1.4 GHz processor isn't quite up to par with the Moto G's, but the 4.5-inch screen, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal memory, and 5MP rear-facing camera are pretty comparable. If you envy the feature set found on the HTC One, the Desire comes sporting HTC Sense with BoomSound, BlinkFeed, Zoe, Video Highlights, and other features you won't find on a phone running a relatively stock build of Android. The difference doesn't apply merely to software, either. While Desire buyers won't get the HTC One's aluminum build, they will still get dual front-facing speakers. That's one feature that even the substantially more capable Nexus 5 could benefit from.


The Desire is available now, just waiting to be paired with one of Virgin Mobile's off-contract plans starting at just $35 a month.

Virgin Mobile USA Partners With HTC to Give Customers New Meaning to Mobile Sound without a Contract

Virgin Mobile USA, a leader in the no-contract wireless industry has added the HTC Desire® to its growing family of 4G LTE devices. Available today for $279.99, this smartphone enables consumers to enjoy superior experience along with Virgin Mobile’s no-contract  Beyond Talk plans starting at $35 a month with unlimited data & messaging .

“HTC Desire is a sleek smartphone designed to deliver an unforgettable experience,” said Mark Lederman, Director of Marketing, Virgin Mobile USA. “This high-tech  LTE device is a great addition to our lineup, and with the value, choice and flexibility of no-contract wireless plans, breaking free from a long-term contract is a simple and money-saving decision.”

Marty McGinley, Vice President of Sales, HTC America said, “We’re proud to introduce a premium quality smartphone at an accessible price that features HTC’s distinctive innovations in audio, imaging and performance.”

HTC Desire enhances the mobile experience with HTC BlinkFeed™, which populates new content and social media updates and makes them available on the home screen. Its stunning 4.5” qHD full lamination display is perfect for reading these updates, watching videos, viewing photos and surfing the web, while the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 400 processor featuring a dual-core, 1.4 GHz processor enhances the overall performance. HTCDesire also offers HTC BoomSound™ – dual front facing stereo speakers powered with built-in amps that with the display create an immersive audiovisual experience,, so you can enjoy and share your music, videos, games, and content with amazing sound.

Key features of HTC Desire:

  • 4G LTE
  • 4.5” qHD Touchscreen Display with Corning ® Gorilla® Glass 2
  • 5.0 MP Rear Facing Camera w/ HD Video Capture
  • Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 400 processor featuring dual-core, 1.4 GHz processor
  • Operating System: Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) with HTC Sense
  • Wi-Fi & NFC capable
  • Stereo Bluetooth 4.0
  • Memory:  1 GB  RAM | 8GB ROM*
  • External Memory:  MicroSDTM  slot for expandable storage up to 64 MB (card not included)
  • Experience-enhancing features from HTC - HTC BoomSound™, HTC BlinkFeed™, HTC Zoe™, Video Highlights, and more!

HTC Desire on Virgin Mobile

Bertel King, Jr.
Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. The only things he likes sweeter than his tea are his gadgets, and while few objects burn more than a metal phone on a summer day, he prefers them that way anyway.

  • Danny Holyoake

    My first Android smartphone was the HTC Desire. This post confused me a little.

    • Lirodon

      This is the Desire 601.

    • Anu6is

      Same here (my first smartphone as well)
      I was slightly confused as to why/how it was being "revived" (until I actually read the post)

    • RoshanKarki

      Mine was and still is :)

    • usaff22

      Mine was the Wildfire, the little brother of the Desire lol

      • Lirodon

        Well, my mom just went from a Wildfire S to a Desire 601 today. Its actually pretty nice looking; its a soft plastic variant of the One Mini for sure. It feels nice and swift

    • Shitiz Garg

      Ditto, I was like, "so...I can buy the OG Desire now? Yay!"

  • Lirodon

    I find it strange that both Virgin USA and Bell in Canada have branded it as just the Desire, yet SaskTel and a few others are correctly calling it the Desire 601

  • Marcell LĂ©vai

    Aaaand you won't get any fkin updates. #ohnonothx

    • joe

      Actually virgin confirmed this will get kit hat next year

  • KoukiFC3S

    Needs more ram. These specs are pretty close to the One Mini no?

  • Niels

    How is the Snapdragon 400 1.4GHz not up to par with the Snapdragon 400 1.2GHz?

    • You’re Welcome

      Its dual core 1.4GHz compared to quad core 1.2GHz.

      • Niels

        I see. Thank you.
        I do wonder how much real-world performance difference there is between the dual core and the quad core version though. Especially for a user that does not play games on his phone (but on his tablet, or doesn't at all).

  • Kcls

    This will never see an update to anything past KitKat, possibly won't see KitKat at all. I guarantee it. I think VM is pretty good with their phone selection but their history of updating phones is abysmal.

  • Brian

    It's too close to cyber monday to be buying phones from VM.

  • Kyle Simmons

    64MB you say, this is the future!

  • Bobbbby

    https://refer.virginmobileusa.com/FHSf0r for a free $25 top-up on new accounts only!! Please register at the link before you activate your phone. Phone can then be purchased anywhere! Whats better than free top-ups???