Americans: Rent a Nokia N96 for $36/month

Rentobile is genius. I’ve been thinking of starting something like this for a while in the UK.

But for Americans, stuffed by the (somewhat) rubbish mobile carriers in the States not carrying Nokia or any other decent European devices, this is a boon.

Rentobile carries a large range of different devices — some locked to the big networks, others entirely unlocked.

If you’re a member (rates vary, but if you buy a year’s membership, it works out at $5 per month) you can get hold of most of the top of the range devices for around $35-40. I’m talking N96, E71, Sony Ericsson Xperia and so on.

If you choose not to be a member, then you pay about $20 more for the monthly handset rental rate. And the minimum rental period is a month.

I reckon this service will — if it hasn’t already — garner a huge, huge following from the Americans starved of access to European devices.

I’m right, aren’t I? I could name 10 US citizens right now who’d sign-up for this in a jiffy. You don’t want to go spunking $500 for an unlocked handset from a supplier only to find out it’s not.that.good do you? So rent it for a month … then try another one.

I haven’t tried this myself although I’m tempted to arrange something for when I’m in Las Vegas.

Anyone else tried it?

See also the service write-up write up on Springwise. (Thanks Charlie)

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